You will be picked up at 0630h (06:30am) in a mini-bus from your central hotel in Rome. Accompanied by a guide, you will be taken in a coach on a tour of Naples.
Leave Rome in a southerly direction and take the Highway of the Sun crossing the fertile Roman countryside through the area known as Castelli Romani. Approximately halfway along the highway, you will be able to see the Abbey of Montecassino. The abbey is perched on a mountain and symbolises the endurance and resilience of Christian faith. It has been destroyed and rebuilt on four separate occasions, including the most recent, World War II.
Arrive at Naples and proceed towards the hill of Posillipo, from were you can enjoy spectacular views of the Gulf of Naples and the volcano, Vesuvius. Descend towards the port of Mergellina and follow the coastal road to arrive at the ancient fishing quarter of Santa Lucia. Here you will see the impressive Castel dell’Ovo (meaning Egg’s Castle), rising upon the islet of Megaride. It is the city’s oldest castle. Apparently, the name of the castle is linked to a medieval legend.
Continue on your Naples tour and see the following sites:
• Piazza del Plebiscito: It is the largest square in Naples and is bounded on the east by the Royal Palace and on the west by the Church of San Francesco di Paola.
• Royal Palace: The Royal Palace of Naples is one of the four residences used by the Bourbon Kings. The 17th century palace visible today is a result of numerous renovations. Today, the palace and its adjacent grounds are home to the San Carlo theatre, a museum and the National Library of Naples.
• Basilica of San Francesco di Paola: It was built as an offering from Ferdinando di Bourbon after his return from exile in Palermo during the French occupation. Appreciate the circular shape of the church covered by an impressive dome, with lacunas and rosettes carved from limestone.
• San Carlo Opera House: It is the oldest, still active opera house in Europe and is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The theatre was designed by architects Angelo Carasale and Giovanni Antonio Medrano for the Bourbon king, Charles III of Naples. Appreciate its architecture, gold embellishments and the blue upholstery.
• Gallery of Umberto I: The gallery has the traditional Greek cross form and the glass dome. It was inaugurated in the 19th century. In the gallery, you will come across many shops and bars.
• Maschio Angioino: The fort is over 600 years old and is situated at Piazza Municipio. It was constructed by Charles of Anjou, when he took over Naples. Admire its decorative triumphal arch in white marble.
Leave the city and cross the fertile valley of Mount Vesuvius passing the towns of Ercolano, Torre del Greco and Torre Annunziata before arriving at Pompeii. Pompeii is one of the most important archaeological sites in Europe and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was buried under lava and ash from Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD and lay forgotten for hundreds of years. Excavations began in the 18th century and are still being carried out.
Before your tour you will stop for lunch at a local restaurant in Pompeii.
You will then have a guided tour of Pompeii which will take around 2 hours. An expert guide will bring Pompeii back to life for you and show you many of the best-preserved relics.
On the way back to Rome you will visit a coral and cameo factory, where you have the opportunity to admire and purchase items of this ancient craft, dating back to the Greek times. The journey back to Rome will take you about 3 hours.