Today we arrive in Herculaneum, a 15 minute train ride from Pompeii. We did both Pompeii and Herculaneum in the same day. A lot to fit into one day (we didn’t see everything in Pompeii) but it was nice to be able to get a glimpse of both sites and be able to see the differences. It’s fascinating to see the old ancient ruins literally below the modern day town. Herculaneum lies more than 60 feet below the town of Ercolano (in some places right under it).
Here’s some information on Herculaneum from the Fodor’s book, Naples, Capri & the Amalfi Coast:
“Herculaneum was buried by Vesuvius’s eruption in AD79. Unlike Pompeii, it was submerged in a mass of volcanic mud that sealed and preserved wod and ohter materials (whereas at Pompeii, most organic matter rotted away over time). Much smaller than its famous neighbor, the settlement of Herculaneum was wealthier and more select, and a greater protion of what was found has been left in place. Several villas have inlaid marble floors that evoke the same admiration as the mosaics in Naple’s Museo Archeologico. Elsewhere it’s possible to gauge how the less privileged lived: more remains of the upper stories than in Pompeii, so you can view the original stairs to the cramped, poorly lighted rooms that gave onto the central courtyard. Here there’s more of a sense of a living community than Pompeii is able to convey.”