Italy
Piazza Schettini

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    • Day 16

      Naples & Pompeii - Day 15 Tour

      August 11, 2019 in Italy ⋅ 🌙 24 °C

      About to head off on our Naples and Pompeii tour, soooo early in the morning 😁😁😁

      Long hooot, humid day while in Australia it's snowing every where just about.

      We drive to Naples and did a drive through of the town, the water was beautiful and aspects of the city are the same, but I feel Roma is a nicer city.

      From there we went onto lunch, traditional Italian pizza which was quite nice and caught up with our other tour mates.

      Pompeii, what can I say, so we'll preserved and looked after and huge.

      Back to Roma for a late dinner, a Magnum ice cream with the lot and off to bed. We are catching the train in the morning to Florence.
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    • Day 53

      The city lives on...Pompeii

      May 23, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

      We’ve decided that Naples isn’t for us, and that climbing Mt Vesuvius on a hot day is unfair on Amelia, we can see it really well and wrk is Pompeii will be really interesting.

      We can park right next to the entrance and decide to take the pushchair for Coen...about 3 minutes in we realise this is not going to work with the huge cobble stone streets - the deepest gaps between each large cobble stone meaning you can get 5 metres in about 30 minutes! Nic runs back to get the back pack and we roam through the old city.

      It’s busy but we imagine a place like this is busy EVERY day. With the tickets we got a really good guide book telling us about each area of th town and what here is to see in each place. The full city tour would take about 8hrs, so we highlight the bits we really want to see and wander through. It really is amazing to see this place, preserved so well, with some really recent discoveries too. To see exactly how people used to live almost 2000 years ago, the buildings they used to live, work and play in, the stunning amphitheatre (famous for its Pink Floyd concert/film), and the casts of the people who died trying to escape is beyond amazing.

      All is going well and Amelia is just about finding enough shade down the long straight cobbled streets, we’ve bought enough snacks to get them back, but as I (Sarah) turn a corner my foot wedges down one of the cobble holes and I twist my ankle pretty badly. Some lovely English men stop to help and offer to half carry me back to the entrance, but I decide (through embarrassment) that I can hobble. When we get to be main square we see some paramedics and decide to ask for some ice to help the pain, they speak no English but more embarrassingly decide to half carry (half drag!) me through the busy main square to their first aid room, where they wrap my ankle in a compression and offer me an injection in my bum (I decline due to the lack of translation available, but accept the single paracetamol they offer instead).

      We get back to the van (a little slower than planned) grabbing a take away pizza on the way, and head off to do a (painful) food shop before deciding to see if we can make our next stop in one go. We plan to visit friends (Kat an Fabio) who are in Italy, so if the children make it through this long journey, we’ll get a few days of not much driving and they can see the other English children for an extra day.

      By the time we arrive, my ankle has fattened up, and the rain has set in, but luckily we are in good hands now and meet are friends at a lovely, most importantly, local pizza restaurant, where we order our first sample of truffles (which Coen LOVES!) and some other delish pasta, washed down with some kind of Italian liquor (to help the ankle of course!), and we meet some of Kat’s family and Amelia enjoys joining in with the children (English children at last, for real 4yr old conversation!)

      Kat and Fabio have also kindly arranged for us to stay in the hotel car park for as long as we stay with them, so we head back and find out their plans for the weekend...
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    • Day 5

      Day 4 - Pompei

      August 14, 2018 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 84 °F

      ‍‍Today our bags were picked up from our room at 7am. I had already headed down to breakfast while John got dressed (we were to meet in the lobby at 7:50 am).  At 7.30, I returned to the room to discover John was getting readyg the flashlight on his phone.  Right after the luggage was picked up, the power to the room was turned off. So I ran downstairs to tell the Front Desk that the power was off and let Florence, our tour director know our situation.  The hotel sent someone up, but he could not resolve the problem. So John finished up in the dark and our group got on the bus.

      Pompei was impressive. To ensure that we could go into some othe more impressive houses that limited group size, our group was divided into two smaller groups.  Our guide was good.  What makes Pompei so impressive is the size of the town.  We spent about 2 hours there.  We ate lunch at a nearby restaurant.  The food was delicious and plentiful (and included wine). I have started taking pictures of the wines I like in hopes I can get them ahen I get home.

      We got to our hotel in Rome around 4:30, but our luggage didn't get to our room for another 30 minutes.  Once we got our luggage, we showered and dressed and met up with the group to walk to the restaurant.  The wine was good, but the service was very slow and many of the meals were not good. We each could choose 3 courses. I chose a pasta (fettuccine with truffles), a beef entree and canoli for dessert.  my dishes were all good.  John was disappointed in his.  He thought the meat was not a very good quality.  one guy at our table, Larry, ordered a pork dish that was all fat.  Then the recommended dessert which was supposed to be a chocolate tort with chocolate sauce and blueberries that almost everyone but me ordered came with no chocolate sauce or berries and was evidently very dry.

      We barely finished our dinner when it was time to head for our little vans to take us on a Rome by Night tour.  14 of us were supposed to go, but a backed out, so only 12 of us went - 8 in one van and 4 in our van. We first went to the Trivoli Fountain. It was still pretty crowded at around 9.30 pm.  Then we drove around the Colossium.  There was no one there.  Our guide, Antonio was very good. He told us a lot of information about Rome as we drove us around.   We also crossed the Tiberius River and saw some of Rome on that side.  Our final stop was St. Peter's Basilica.  The four of us from our van were able to walk around with no one else around and take pictures.  That tour was well worth the extra cost.  When we got back to the hotel at after 11 pm it was time to relax before heading to bed.
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    • Day 60

      Pompeji und Neapel

      June 23, 2018 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 26 °C

      Wir suchen uns einen Campingplatz direkt in Pompeji und schauen uns, so weit es mit 2 Kindern eben geht, die Ruinen an. Sehr beeindruckend wie gut hier alles durch die Asche konserviert wurde. Teilweise sieht man bei den Wandmalereien noch die Originalfarben.
      Am nächsten Tag fahren wir mit dem Zug nach Neapel. Die mit Abstand wuseligste Stadt die wir bisher gesehen haben. Sehr enge Gassen durch die die Leute mit Rollern und Autos fahren. Überall Menschen, Läden und Pizzerien und auf einmal eine riesige Kathedrale mittendrin.
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    • Day 57

      Pompeii: Preserved in its Prime

      October 30, 2017 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

      Early ish start to get to Pompeii. Took a train to the less popular entrance (anfiteatro). Had a scare not getting to validate our tickets but conductor was nice so no problems.

      Met a Slovakian girl who didn't know where to go so walked and chatted with her (15min from train station to ruins). Ran into her 3 other times and had nice chats.

      Went into Pompei itself and walked around. Saw heaps of things and used an app to find out more when we were particularly interested. Amphitheatre was cool - not giant but interesting (Pink Floyd recorded an album/song there once).

      Definitely helped having more information, but a good guide book or app or audio guide would do the same. Unsure whether a tour would've helped. The bits we overheard weren't amazing although some sections were intriguing. One guide explained about how the middle of the street would have basically been sewage so animals would go there but people would walk on the raised sidewalks.

      Pottered around by ourselves and really enjoyed it. Found a bakery which was interesting - you could still see the ovens and mill stones. Also walked through a brothel with some small rooms and rather explicit frescoes on the walls! Although rather unexpectedly the most explicit freco we saw wasn't at the brothel... but at the house of some rich merchants. Odd.

      Grabbed a bite to eat (took ages, should've brought a packed lunch). Wandered some more. Plenty of tourists but still had some bits to ourselves. And quite hot though nice when sun was behind clouds. Would not want to go on a hot and busy day - would be too many people and too much heat we suspect.

      Ended up at the other end (a very large site overall), to finish at the Villa of Mysteries - thankfully had it almost to ourselves. The villa is famous for its beautiful frescoes, which are exceptionally well preserved. Crazy to think that they've lasted this long.

      Exited the site and walked the 40min back to the station. Went past the main, more touristy station and was glad we missed it. Way pricier. And super touristy.

      Had a gelato (2 flavours on a cone and just €1 each - a steal). Yum. Got a magnet, got a coffee, got train tickets (and validated them this time) and back to Salerno. A fun day all in all.
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    • Day 29

      Pompei

      September 24, 2017 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 23 °C

      For a world-famous archaeological site, there was little by way of signage or information about how to actually get into the place if you arrive by bus. Even Google maps seemed strangely silent and eventually misleading on the matter. We did eventually find our way to the main gate, after stopping in a great restaurant for the best valued pizza.

      Pompei itself was gigantic and we had a bit of fun trying to interpret the maps with minimal information provided that didn't match up with most of the signage. The kids enjoyed themselves, and it was quite different to what I expected.
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    • Day 29

      Getting to Pompei

      September 24, 2017 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 19 °C

      Up early for the train from Termini to Tiburtina, transfer to the bus station and on the bus. This was a sentence written without much turmoil. On the day however, everything was pretty easy until we got to the bus station, only to be met with chaos. It was bound to happen since I am sure I had only uttered the day before that the train and bus network in France and Italy had worked like clockwork, down to the minute just about. We arrived at the bus station at least an hour ahead of schedule, where there was absolutely no indication of what to do next. A line of angry people were lined up at the "ticket office" (although perhaps they were not angry, just speaking in dramatic Italian). One guy did dare to queue jump, at which time there was a bit of anger directed at him - that much can be deduced without the need to understand the language.

      It would appear the board which told you which platform you had to go to was broken, and with only one girl working the counter (despite another man standing around behind her doing what looked like "nothing"), she didn't really care to help people. To be fair, she may have just been sick of being yelled at about the broken billboard despite it only being 7.30am.

      So the only way to know which bus you had to get on, was to stand around, wait for one of your bus company's buses to pull in, rush to the bay to see if that was yours, and bravo if it was. So, that is exactly what we did. Bit of a trial run for tomorrow because we are going to be back here to catch the same bus company to Siena.

      The bus journey was great and we drove past Vesuvius and through Naples. That was an eye-opener! Imagine scouting for a post-apocalyptic movie location - do yourself a favour and go to Naples - will save heaps of time! Graffiti, overgrown, run-down, neglected, slums, rubbish everywhere, mafia-controlled, barely habitable...
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    • Day 4

      Pompeii

      October 25, 2016 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 24 °C

      Our last sightseeing stop was a visit to Pompeii, an ancient Roman city buried by volcanic ash with Mt. Vesuvius's eruption in 79 AD. Although we had a very knowledgeable guide, we only got to see about 10 percent of the ruins. We will certainly need to go back someday! We got pictures of a fresco inside a Pompeii home, a cast of a baby who died in the hot winds of Vesuvius, a picture of us in front of Vesuvius, as well as photos of the city's forum, a bath house, and a public restroom.Read more

    • Day 13

      Gegen das trübe Wetter...

      October 1, 2022 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 24 °C

      ... hilft ein Zimmer mit eigener Sauna und Whirlpool!
      Ich gehe dann mal schwitzen! 🥵🌡️

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    Piazza Schettini

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