Naples, Capri and Pompeii
Two weeks ago I went on a trip to Naples, Capri and Pompeii. Fitting three big names like that into one weekend was always going to be hard, and I’m glad I wasn’t on the organising end of it! Luckily for me, this was an Erasmus Network organised trip and all I had to do was pay my money, join a WhatsApp group and get on the coach. We had three days ahead of us, and three monumental places to see…
Day 1: Naples
We arrived at lunchtime on the Friday, and after setting up camp at the B&B we were given a tour of Naples by some local students. The tour split into English and Spanish, and took us on a journey round the city that included churches (lots of churches), Castle Nouvo and the main squares. Our guide was very knowledgeable and knew lots of extra stories about the places he showed us (such as a rogue crocodile in the castle that supposedly ate prisoners). It was a lot of walking though, and we were understandably very hungry by the time we finished.
Lucky for us, Naples is famous for one thing in particular: pizza! We ate at a restaurant in the backstreets of the city that somehow managed to cater for a huge band of hungry foreign students, and I can confirm that the pizza was delicious.
Day 2: Capri
We caught the ferry from Naples to Capri on Saturday morning and arrived in time for a boat tour of the island. The weather was gorgeous and we had the chance to see Capri in all it’s splendour. We then took a long uphill trek to the town centre at the top of the island, where we ate gelato (of course!) and visited the beautiful gardens of Augustus. Although everything was extremely pricey and crawling with tourists, Capri was absolutely stunning!
Of course we were hungry by the end of the day, so when we arrived back in Naples we decided to get more pizza, just to make sure it was as tasty as we remembered… it was!
Day 3: Pompeii
As an archaeology student, this was the day I was most looking forward to (and the whole reason I had booked the trip to be honest). Unfortunately we left Naples later than expected due to our coach breaking down, which meant that by the time we got to the site we had less than three hours to see it. Luckily the trip cost included a tour with a local guide, who did his best to show us as much of the ruins as he could in the short time we had available to us. The site itself is beyond words. An archaeology student’s dream. I could go back there every day and still find new things to be fascinated by! Sadly we really didn’t have enough time to take it all in, but the guide was excellent so I didn’t feel too disheartened that we had lost a lot of exploration time. We did manage to see the forum, which was perfect as I’d just been studying it in my Pompeii module at Sapienza. The weather was also ideal, and we had a gorgeous view of Vesuvius:
We went straight from Pompeii back to Rome and were completely exhausted by the time we got back after cramming so much into one weekend!
Overall, I’m very glad I went. Although the main reason I went was to see Pompeii, I also got to go to Capri, something I never would have planned by myself, and the knowledge we had from the local students in Naples gave a new light to the city that I wouldn’t have considered if I’d just visited alone. Because the trip was so busy (and hectic) I did miss out on a few things that I would have liked to have seen. For instance, I wish I’d had the time to have a look at Tiberius’ structures on Capri, and I would have appreciated a lot more time in Pompeii. That being said, at least I have had a taster, and I am excited to plan trips by myself to visit these places again again and see all the things I missed!