Day 4: Pompeii
Pompeii! Always a highlight of any trip to Italy. Quick history note: In 79 AD, Mt. Vesuvius erupted, covering Pompeii in volcanic ash and debris. This resulted in the city being fossilized, essentially, and gradually forgotten about until late in the 18th century, when it was accidentally rediscovered by a farmer digging a well. Following its rediscovery the ancient city has been slowly excavated over the past 240 years. Visitors can now step back in time and explore the city much as it was 2,000 years ago. After a hearty breakfast on the fourth floor of the hotel overlooking the ancient city and Mt. Vesuvius looming in the background, we began our trip back in time. We started at the amphitheatre before moving on to the house of Menander, the Odeon (theater), and ending up in the forum. Students were then given time to explore on their own. It was a truly special morning! After Pompeii, we jumped on our bus and headed east across the peninsula to the port at Bari. From there our ferry, the Ariadne, took us southeast via the Adriatic Sea on our overnight voyage to Greece!