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Pompeii Tour from Rome

Has anyone done one of the bus tours to Pompeii from Rome? How was it? Was it enough time? What attractions, if any, did you see after Pompeii? What guide/company did you use?

Thanks in advance for the information!

Posted by
12584 posts

riverlawyer, I've not done one of them via bus from Rome (we did the scavi on our own from Sorrento by commuter train) but read plenty about them. The reason I'd advise against it, even without firsthand experience? It's the amount of time you have to spend sitting on the bus: a minimum of 3 hours each way, and more than that if additional sightseeing - as in an Amalfi Coast drive - is part of the tour. I believe you are going in December, and with an 8 year-old?

I would think your child would be miserable having to sit that long. Those 6+ bus hours is also a LOT of time that could be used for more active/better quality sightseeing; the road route between Rome and Pompeii isn't especially scenic.

If excavations are your thing, think about doing Ostia Antica instead? It's MUCH closer to Rome, and can be done as a 1/2 day trip inexpensively by train. I think this would be much less wearing on your young person...and yourselves! Save Pompeii for a future trip when you can devote more time to the Naples/Sorrento/Amalfi region? Your child may also appreciate that one a bit more when he/she is a bit older.

If needed, the folks here can provide more detailed instructions how to get there. :O)

Posted by
980 posts

We did this back in 2013 because we just wanted it to be easy. It was my first time in Italy and Pompeii was somewhere I’ve dreamt of going since I was a child so I needed to do this and a daytrip out of Rome is the only time I had to do it.

The tour bus picked us up from our hotel early and took us to meeting place where we all waited for everyone else. We left Rome at 8, stopped in Naples for about a 45 minute guided tour then on to Pompeii. The tour included lunch at a local restaurant and the obligatory stop through a coral cameo store, which I actually found interesting. If I recall right this store was at the entrance to Pompeii. We spent about 2-3 hours in Pompeii itself with a guide. It felt just right. Then back on the bus to Rome. It was about a 12 hour day with all the driving but I felt like it was a good first visit. We used Carrani bus tours.

Posted by
21243 posts

I fall into the camp that says you cannot see or appreciate Pompeii in less than 4, 5, maybe 6 hrs. It is not a drive-by. It is huge. And then to get a really good understanding you should tour the Pompeii museum in Naples either before or after. All the good stuff that has been recovered is in the museum with good explanations. See the secret room of items that used to require the Pope's permission -- but not for the eight year old.

What Claudette described would give a brief taste of Pompeii and, for some, that is more the adequate. But it is tough to do Pompeii as a day trip from Rome. I, personally, would save it for another trip especially if there is an eight year old involved.

Posted by
95 posts

We did the Walks of Italy tour from Rome to Pompeii and Positano in one day in 2019.

It was not enough time at Pompeii and was very disappointing. We felt so rushed and there just isn’t enough time for the guide to show all of the major stuff because it’s already time to leave!

The guide was good, the ride was fine, but I wouldn’t recommend it.

Posted by
12584 posts

It was not enough time at Pompeii and was very disappointing.

Right. That's the other issue with a tour from Rome. Most of them only spend a couple hours at the scavi, and it's HUGE!! We spent 5+ hours and couldn't cover it all. And then there's the Archeological Museum in Naples which contains many of Pompeii's treasures. Wait until you and your family can make enough time for all of it!

Posted by
7600 posts

I second Kathy's idea to do Ostia Antica.

At that time of year you may not have ideal weather every day.

For Ostia, you could decide in the morning if the weather is suitable and go.

If you book a bus trip to Pompeii, you are stuck with whatever the weather might be that day.

Claudette said it was a 12 hour trip. At that time of year there is only 9 hrs of daylight, a factor you may want to consider.