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Herculaneum and Pompeii Tours




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3.8(14.3K)

Combo (Save 5%): Pompeii + Herculaneum Tickets

from €41.80
€39.72

5% off

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  • Combine your visit to 2 ancient towns preserved under the ash of Mt. Vesuvius! Get tickets to the archaeological sites of Pompeii and Herculaneum.
  • Bypass the queues at Herculaneum as you learn of its intellectual traditions at places like the Villa of Papyri, where 1st-century philosophy scrolls were found.
  • Discover everyday objects at Pompeii, an amphitheater, public baths, and other sites that will give you a glimpse of the life of ancient Romans.
  • The preserved UNESCO World Heritage Sites feature excavated ruins of streets and houses that you can freely explore.

Inclusions

  • Entry to Pompeii
  • Skip-the-line entry to Herculaneum
  • Tip: Try to observe the different tiling trends in Pompeii and Herculaneum. While the former had colorful mosaics, the latter had more black and white designs.
  • This experience is wheelchair and pram/stroller accessible. Entry is free for people with disabilities and an accompanying adult.
  • Facilities: restroom, cloak room.

Pompeii

  • Big dogs (above the weight 10kg and the height of 40cm) are not allowed into the venue. Guide dogs with the proper certification are welcome.

Herculaneum

  • Dogs are allowed into the venue, without restriction of breed or size. However, they must be kept with a leash and/or muzzle (the latter is obligatory for all breeds and opportunities provided by current regulations). Pet parents must have bags to collect any droppings.
  • In the Antiquarium, inside the Padiglione della Barca and in the domus with mosaic floors, access is allowed only to dogs carried in their arms or in the appropriate carrier.
  • These tickets can't be cancelled or rescheduled.
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4.8(45)

From Pompeii/Naples: Pompeii & Herculaneum Guided Tour with Archaeologist

from
€99.75
Free Cancellation

You can cancel these tickets up to 48 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund.

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5 hr. 30 min. - 7 hr.
Audio Guide
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  • Tick off 2 important archaeological sites ingrained in myth and history – Pompeii and Herculaneum, on the same day with a fun guided tour.
  • Walking beside an archaeologist will lend you a unique perspective, a sneak peek into the typical lifestyle of Romans over 1900 years ago.
  • Get convenient round-trip transfers! If you are in Naples, have a comfy adventure in an AC coach. From Pompeii, experience the charm of the local train.
  • Tune into digital audio guides to listen to fascinating stories of ancient Rome in the language you prefer.
  • Marvel at perfectly preserved frescoes, intricate mosaics, and lavish villas of Herculaneum and Pompeii as you listen to its tragic tale of fire and ash.

Inclusions

  • Guided tour of Pompeii and Herculaneum with entry
  • Expert English-speaking archaeologist guide
  • Digital audio guide in Italian, English, Spanish, French & German
  • Round-trip AC coach transfers from Naples (optional)
  • Round-trip train ticket from Pompeii to Herculaneum (optional)
  • Tip: Check out the 3-storey mansion in Herculaneum, House of the Relief of Telephus, once laden with marble walls and a panoramic terrace.
  • This experience is wheelchair and pram/stroller accessible. Entry is free for people with disabilities and an accompanying adult.
  • Unfortunately, pets cannot tag along for this experience.
  • You can cancel these tickets up to 48 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund.
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From Pompeii/Naples: Pompeii, Herculaneum & Vesuvius Day Trip

from
€119
Free Cancellation

You can cancel these tickets up to 24 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund.

Instant Confirmation
Mobile Ticket
8 hr.
Audio Guide
Highlights
Inclusions
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Cancellation Policy
  • Experience a full day of adventure and history as you gain entry to Pompeii, Herculaneum, and Vesuvius National Park.
  • Round-trip transfers from your hotel in either Pompeii or Naples, an expert driver, and a carefully curated route allow you to make the most of your trip.
  • Benefit from a multilingual audio guide and map of Pompeii, followed by a visit to the homes and public spaces of the smaller city of Herculaneum.
  • At Mount Vesuvius, you’ll climb to the active crater along with a volcanic guide, and find a thriving wine industry on its fertile slopes!

Inclusions

  • Day trip to Pompeii, Herculaneum, and Vesuvius
  • Round-trip transfers from Pompeii or Naples (as per option selected)
  • Entry to Pompeii, Herculaneum, and Vesuvius National Park
  • Audio guide and map of Pompeii
  • Tip: Don’t miss Herculaneum's boathouses, holding the skeletal remains of those who tried to escape the eruption by sea.
  • While Pompeii and Herculaneum are wheelchair and stroller accessible, the climb up Mount Vesuvius is not.
  • Unfortunately, pets cannot tag along for this experience.
  • You can cancel these tickets up to 24 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund.
More details
Herculaneum TicketsHerculaneum and Pompeii

Herculaneum and Pompeii are both regarded as Mount Vesuvius’ lost cities — two former crowning jewels of the Roman empire that were cruelly snuffed out during the volcanic eruption of 79 AD. While the two cities are sometimes pitted against each other, with Pompeii regarded as the more famous of the two, here’s all you need to know about what makes each of these buried towns unique in their own way.

Pompeii vs Herculaneum

Same, but not quite. Here's what unites and differentiates these two ancient sites.

Herculaneum and Pompeii Tours
Herculaneum and Pompeii Tours
Herculaneum and Pompeii Tours

Material destruction

Pompeii experienced the first half of Vesuvius’ wrath, where it rained ash and volcanic debris, collapsing roofs, columns and other structures. Massive rocks fell from the sky, obliterating buildings and people. By the time Vesuvius’ rage abated, several parts of Pompeii were buried under 10 m or more of ash.

Herculaneum’s fate was slightly different but perhaps more lethal: it suffered from the pyroclastic flows. The intense heat generated by these flows trapped roads, buildings and public monuments in a bubble, expelling air and inducing a vacuum. At certain points, Herculaneum was entombed under 75 ft of volcanic material.

Herculaneum and Pompeii Tours
Herculaneum and Pompeii Tours

Preservation

It was easier to excavate Pompeii as it was coated with a much shallower layer of ash when compared to Herculaneum. But this also meant that with the exception of a few preserved eggs and loaves of bread, organic matter was destroyed in Pompeii. The ash coating also couldn’t protect frescoes and statues from the elements for too long.

In Herculaneum, the heat effectively baked objects in place, even carbonizing organic remains like wood, food, cloth, paper and human waste. Luxurious villas were still in great shape when dug up, with two and three-storeyed houses still more or less intact (a sight unseen in Pompeii).

Herculaneum and Pompeii Tours

Excavation

Around 44 hectares acres i.e. two-thirds of Pompeii have been excavated and open to the public. However, close to 22 hectares still remain unexplored, and many archeologists are leaving this for future generations to tackle with better technology.

In contrast, only about an acre or so of Herculaneum has been fully exposed to the public, which means over 75% still lies hidden. New excavations are carried out haltingly as present-day Ercolano and the neighboring town of Portici have built settlements over Herculaneum, and subterranean digging would require the demolition of these current dwellings.

Things to know before booking Herculaneum and Pompeii tours

  • Opt for a guided tour since there’s quite a lot to take in at both Herculaneum and Pompeii. Whether it’s understanding the exact cause and extent of damage or knowing the significance behind a recovered fresco, an expert guide is there to educate and entertain you. Trust us, the extra €60+ euros will be totally worth it.
  • If you’ve purchased basic entry tickets, don't feel pressured to visit both Herculaneum and Pompeii on the same day. It’s perhaps best to visit them on different dates to fully do justice to what they have to offer.
  • Note that Pompeii closes at 5:30pm whereas Herculaneum closes at 7:30pm, so it’s advisable to finish a Pompeii tour before heading to Herculaneum. Besides, on your basic entry ticket, you get skip-the-line access to Herculaneum anyway, helping you save time.
  • Both Herculaneum and Pompeii require a fair amount of walking — and a trek up Vesuvius necessitates some basic fitness. Carry water and some light snacks as refreshment outlets are few and far between in these sites. 

Trips to Pompeii and Herculaneum

Now that you’ve gained context on the two towns, here are your ticket options to visit them both.

Herculaneum and Pompeii Tours

Entry tickets

Suited for: Those on a budget
Duration: Flexible

  • Avail standard entry to Pompeii and get skip-the-line access to Herculaneum with these tickets.
  • There is no guide to assist you on this tour, so be sure you do your research before visiting! There are also no transfers from Pompeii to Herculaneum or vice versa. So plan your travel beforehand. 

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Herculaneum and Pompeii Tours

Guided tours

Suited for: History buffs
Duration: 5-8 hours

  • Your expert tour guide/archeologist will walk you through the ruins of Pompeii and Herculaneum, regaling you with little-known facts, historic insights and anecdotes.
  • While your guide is English-speaking, you can also tune into audio guides in 5 languages: Italian, English, Spanish, French or German. 

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From Pompeii/Naples: Pompeii & Herculaneum Guided Tour with Archaeologist

Herculaneum and Pompeii Tours

Round-trip transfers

Suited for: Families, elderly tourists

Duration: 5-8 hours

  • Travel from Naples or Pompeii to Herculaneum and back with these round trip transfers, either in an AC coach or train.
  • Benefit from a tour guide who will give you deeper insights into the ruins at Pompeii, Herculaneum and Vesuvius.

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From Pompeii/Naples: Pompeii, Herculaneum & Vesuvius Day Trip

Getting from Pompeii to Herculaneum

By train
By car

Travel Time: Roughly 45 minutes

  • Board the L44088 towards Napoli Porta Nolana from the Pompeii Santuario station.
  • Get down at the Ercolano Scavi station, from where the archeological park is 6-8 minutes away by walk.

Duration: 19 minutes

  • Get on the A3/E45 fromSS 18 Tirrena Inferiore/SR18.
  • Follow the A3/E45 toVia Cupa Monti in Ercolano. Take the exit to Ercolano Scavi from A3/E45.
  • Continue on Via Cupa Monti. Take Via A. Bordiga and Via A. Moro to SS 18 Tirrena Inferiore/SR18.
  • Park at the municipal parking lot at Viale de Papiri Ercolanesi or any of the other unguarded spots near Herculaneum.

Frequently asked questions about Herculaneum and Pompeii tours

Which visiting experience is better: Herculaneum or Pompeii?

Both offer unique insights into ancient Roman life, and one isn’t necessarily ‘better’ than the other per se. Herculaneum’s ruins are better preserved, offering an intimate insight into luxurious lives well-lived until they abruptly came to a halt. It almost feels like the residents would return to their still-standing houses. In contrast, Pompeii’s destruction is more evident — most houses have lost their second and third floors, frescoes and statues have faded over the course of time, and human casts showcase the victims’ last moments of agony and helplessness. Both equally paint a picture of preserved, ongoing loss that is haunting. 

What are the advantages of visiting both Pompeii and Herculaneum?

It’s interesting to note the differences and similarities in how the Vesuvius eruption played out for both Pompeii and Herculaneum. While both were undeniably destroyed and never reconstituted, the nature of preservation is vastly different in both. Seeing these sites together helps us get a better picture of the aftermath of a volcanic episode and understand its many facets.

Why is Pompeii more famous than Herculaneum?

Pompeii is touted to be the more renowned of the two ruins since a lot more of the ancient site has been excavated than its neighbor Herculaneum. Pompeii, in general, was also known for its controversial alliances with violence, sex and sensation. In contrast, Herculaneum appeared more sober and laidback. However, recent impetus on Herculaneum studies has boosted awareness and intrigue behind this site as well.

What is the distance from Herculaneum to Pompeii?

Herculaneum is about 20 minutes away from Pompeii, and it takes just about 20-30 minutes by road to get from one site to another. From the Pompeii Scavi train station, you can also ride a train to the Ercolano Scavi station and back.

Can I visit both Herculaneum and Pompeii on the same day?

That depends on your ticket and the time available. A basic entry ticket gives you the flexibility of visiting the sites either on separate dates or on the same day. However, no guide will accompany you on this tour. If you book a day trip, you can see Pompeii, Herculaneum and even Vesuvius (if you so choose) on the same day. Although this itinerary would be more packed, you will benefit from having transport facilities and an expert tour guide.

Can I take a trip to Herculaneum and Pompeii with my children?

Yes, children are likely to be fascinated by the ruins and peeling frescoes. It’s a good idea to prep them beforehand by introducing them to books like Digging up the Past: Pompeii and Herculaneum by Peter Hicks or Pompeii Lost and Found by Mary Pope Osborne. They are even likely to enjoy the audio guides. However, seeing human casts at Pompeii or skeletal remains at Herculaneum might be distressing to them, so if they’re sensitive, it’s best to avoid visiting those exhibits.