Ischia - and other Campanian places
All 'doable' as daytrips from Ischia, with one or two requiring a fairly early start!
Click on the pictures that follow, for collections from individual places - and
:: Travelling in Campania ::
A guide to some of the region's public transport routes
:: The green island of Ischia ::
Twenty miles or so from Naples - about 45 minutes by hydrofoil - and our home since 2003
:: Procida ::
Although separated from Ischia by only a narrow channel, the small island of Procida
nevertheless has a character and (for much of the year) tranquillity all of its own.
Known best perhaps as the location where much of "Il Postino" was filmed, the island
has also featured in several other movies, including "The Talented Mister Ripley".
Click on the images here to open the various individual collections...
:: National Railway Museum - Pietrarsa ::
Italy's very first railway line ran along the coast, past Vesuvius - from the royal villa
in Portici to the capital of the Kingdom of the two Sicilies.
Today the Pietrarsa railway museum is housed where Ferdinand II built his trains, on the
seafront only a mile or two from the centre of Naples - and within easy reach of Sorrento.
:: Paestum - Greek temples ::
Among the greatest glories of Campania, Paestum is one of the few places in Italy that affords more than a
glimpse of Magna Grecia - the overseas colonies established by the city states of ancient Greece.
Here the remains of three magnificent temples stand amidst ruins from the walled city, attracting relatively
few visitors despite Naples, Sorrento and Amalfi all being so close.
(Click on individual pictures here for a larger version)
:: Pozzuoli and the Fields of Fire ::
To ancient Romans the Campi Flegrei - an area west of Naples, out to the edge of the Bay
and beyond - was a mystical place... one where inexplicable forces, wielded by their
gods and by nature, had together created a landscape like no other they knew.
Pozzuoli, the largest settlement there, has long suffered from repeated bradyseism - a
slow rise and fall in the land that frequently forces its inhabitants to flee the city.
Before the city of Rome had a harbour of its own, "Puteoli" was immensely important -
as centre of the grain trade with Sicily and North Africa, it was here that Saint Paul
the Apostle landed on his way to trial in the capital.
Click on the pictures here, either for larger versions or sets from the individual places!
:: Salerno ::
For five months, from February 1944, the new Italian government made Salerno the nation's capital.
Long before this the city, which stands where the rugged Amalfi peninsula meets the mainland, had already
known times of great importance and wealth and few visitors are aware of the extent of the city's role
in history, as reflected in the many fine buildings of the old quarter, recently the subject of much restoration.
The city's fine cathedral houses the tomb of the Apostle Matthew.
If coming to, or leaving, Salerno by sea, note that both the Alicost line and the hydrofoils of the 'Metro del Mare'
moor at, and leave from, the 'Molo Manfredi' quay - at the mainland end of the port - while local boat firms
generally use the smaller tourist harbour, near Piazza della Concordia and the centre of town.
Salerno runs into the neighbouring town of Vietri sul Mare with hardly a pause
For more about getting here and away __http://www.pbase.com/isolaverde/salerno_links
.. with these for sea connections ___http://www.alicost.it/content/?id=6
:: Pompeii ::
. The remains of an ancient Roman city, famously buried under volcanic ash in AD 79.
. To find opening times etc for the various archaeological sites around Vesuvius, the official
. website - currently available only in Italian - starts here __http://www.pompeiisites.org/
. Their Pompei section is on __http://www.pompeiisites.org/Sezione.jsp?idSezione=55
. For a better look at these pictures, and to see the various captions and notes, click on the
. individual thumbnails. PC users might also press F11, for fullscreen mode)...
. Otherwise, try the "Slideshow" button, at top right!
:: Herculaneum ::
Near neighbour to Pompeii, the ruins of the Roman coastal town of Herculaneum
are situated in (under?) the modern city today known as Ercolano.
Although destroyed during the same eruption of AD 79, different forces were at work
- and the buildings and streets fared very differently; rather than being consumed by
fire they were buried by a deep layer of volcanic ash, which the rains then turned
into mud that hardened as an airtight seal some 20 metres thick in places.
A smaller site than Pompeii - with much of the town yet to be excavated from
under the streets of modern Ercolano - and in generally better condition, the
ruins are much more easily appreciated as having once been part of a living city.
In several places earlier scavenging tunnels, dug far into the deep layers of
sediment in the hope of unearthing both treasures and the papyri of libraries,
have been preserved and can be explored....
[2013 note... If planning a visit, do check whether - and when - the gorgeous
"Surburban baths" would be open, as they seem to have been off-limits for a
good while now]
(click on individual pictures for larger versions)
:: Poppea's Villa - Oplontis ::
Just a few miles from Naples, near Pompeii, today's town of Torre Annunziata is the site of Oplontis -
where Nero's second wife is believed to have had a villa, adorned with Pompeian Style II wall paintings.
(The lady is variously referred to as Sabina Poppea, Poppaea Sabina and Poppaea Augusta Sabina)
Here, click on individual thumbnails for a larger version, and perhaps notes etc!
For further pictures and a plan, see http://www.indiana.edu/~leach/c409/oplan.html
You may also be able to find a fine work about the Villa, prepared by Colin.J.Andrews M.A.
Last time I looked, the official website had further photos here
... and a reasonable map of the site, on
:: Boscoreale ::
A visit to the Antiquarium and archaeological site at Boscoreale - just a few miles north of Pompei
For details, see:
Click on individual photos on this page to see a larger version - and, for some, a few notes!
Sadly, the collection in the Antiquarium is missing the best of what was found nearby - amongst
the plunder carried away over the years...
- frescoes from a villa, said to be that of P. Fannius Synistor - long lost to American hands:
- much of the fabulous Boscoreale treasure, unearthed in 1895, is displayed at the Louvre, in Paris:
April 2013 note... Some of the Boscoreale artefacts that do remain are currently "on loan" to London,
where they can be seen as part of this bumper exhibition - set to run until the end of September:
On display during our visit was a collection of plaster casts of bodies found in the ruins of several
of the ancient Roman villas - all of whom had been buried alive during the eruption of Mount Vesuvius
in 79 AD. That exhibition eventually ended on 20 February 2011 - for some more details, see: