As opposed to Pompeii, it's possible to visit all of Herculaneum in just a few hours. The archaeological park is ideal stop for those who have limited time but want to experience the thrill of walking in the footsteps of the ancient Romans!
Herculaneum has been preserved like no other site in the world, not even nearby Pompeii. The city was buried beneath 16 meters of ash and mud during the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD, and this layer of detritus saved two-story domus homes with the internal architecture and décor intact, including features in wood and marble, decorations, jewelry, and even organic remains like food, providing a unique view into the daily lives of the ancient population of Herculaneum.
History of Herculaneum
Herculaneum is named after the mythical Greek god, Hercules, who, according the legend told by Dionysius of Halicarnassus, founded the city in 1243 BC. Historic analysis, however, suggests that the city was founded by the Oscans or the Etruscans in the 7th century BC , conquered by the Samnites in the 5th century BC. In 90 BC the city was dominated by Rome and transformed into a town hall. In the final years of the Roman Republic, Herculaneum reached the height of its splendor thanks to its coastal location, clean air, and mild climate, making it a popular resort town for many of Rome's patrician families. The city was vibrant and densely populated when the earthquake struck in 62 AD, causing serious damage; work to rebuild the city was still going on when the tragic eruption of Mount Vesuvius happened in 79 AD.
The cloud of toxic gases from the eruption wiped out the inhabitants, while the entire city was literally sealed under a flow of ash and volcanic rock 16 meters deep that solidified, preserving almost perfectly intact organic remains like fabric, food, vegetation, and wooden structures.
The town was buried beneath the mud until the 18th Century when King Charles decided it was time to excavate the area to see what lay beneath. Remarkably the mud helped preserve the foundations of most of the buildings and so today, unlike Pompeii, it is possible to take tours of this ancient city and get a good idea what it was like way back then.
It's simply fascinating to walk through these streets, the thermal baths, the forum, the gymnasium and many residential houses; it would almost be impossible to believe any of it is real, only for the fact that you are now seeing it with your very eyes. Herculaneum is arguably the best-preserved Roman town you can see on tours in Italy and a uniquely interesting journey for anyone visiting Naples or anywhere nearby.
Herculaneum Tour in brief:
* Alcaexcursions private driver speaking English will meet/pick up at your Hotel/Accommodation and after a brief presentation, you will be accompanied to your luxury and licensed Mercedes vehicle to start this lovely tour.
*Departure from the meeting point at the agreed time.
*We will drive to Herculaneum where we will make our stop (3h) alca will leave you right at the entrance of the ruins.
*Once visited Herculaneum, your private driver will drive you back to your accommodation in the afternoon.
*Total duration 5 hours
Please kindly note that your driver will be at your complete disposal for the entire time, personalizing your sightseeing tour in order to offer you the best possible experience; in our tour descriptions you can read the highlights of each location, but of course you can discuss the itinerary with your driver and the timing between each place which might be subject to change (traffic - weather conditions).
Please contact us for further information. We'll be glad to customize your experience to your needs.
*If you are interested in having a special stop for lunch during your tour, please email us for to book you in advance, or you can discuss with our local drivers, they can equally recommend some good restaurants as eating well in the Naples area is easy
*Informative and fun, you’ll learn about the life of the wealthy in Roman antiquity as you stroll through the intriguing ruins. Don’t forget to dress appropriately for this excursion, as the streets cobbled and the summer temperature can be extreme. Quality walking shoes and a hat or umbrella should suffice.
*Entrance Fees and Times
- Herculaneum - 11 Euros
Open 08.30 AM - 6.00 PM
- Luxury air conditioned
- English speaking driver
- Photo stops
- Stop in Herculaneum
- All taxes, parking tolls, gasoline, driver maintenance
- Wi-Fi on board
- Refreshing wipes
- Meals and drinks
- Entrance fees to Museums, Churches, Monuments
- Guides in sites
- Guide for Half Day: 120 € (2 hours). Guide for Full Day: 250 €.
- A private guided tour can be organized (2 hrs)