Naples is our first port call on this sailing of the Norwegian Epic.
When we woke this morning the ship was just entering the bay of Naples and it looked to be a beautiful day.
We all met for breakfast at Taste before heading out on our respective tour plans. One of today’s specials was gravy and biscuits and I ordered that along with the fruit salad (and lots of coffee of course).
Sister M and our brother booked an all day tour with ItalyTours.eu to visit Pompeii, Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast. I did that on an Italy land trip two years ago so planned to go to Herculaneum. Sister T wanted to pace herself so she joined me.
I had directions from my Rick Steves book on how to get to the site on your own so we walked through the port area and out to a tram that was going to take us to the train station. After sitting there for 10-15 minutes a kind vendor on the sidewalk yelled at us that the tram doesn’t run anymore. What! We walked over to talk to him and found out we’d have to take a bus to the train station AND you have to buy the bus tickets in advance at a store.
There was a shuttle company advertising at the port entrance with round trip transportation to Herculaneum among other sites. We decided to take that option and it was 15 euros each with the next shuttle leaving at 9 am. The shuttle dropped us and about 10 others outside the road leading to the ruins.
The entrance fee to the ruins was 11 euros. There is a bathroom in the ticket building. We then walked about 1/4 mile to where the gift shop, vending machines, more restrooms and the audio tour booth was and I rented a guide.
The fees for the audio guide is 8 euros for one and 13 euros for two. At each stop I would give Sister T the highlights. Here’s a map if you want to follow along my photo stops.
We walked down stairs to what was the beach at the time of the eruption. There we saw the boat houses where about 300 skeletons were discovered. Apparently they were waiting for rescue when overcome by the intense heat from the eruption.
The bad part about walking down to the beach level was walking back up to a rectangular piazza where we found a funeral alter for a senator and patron of the city, Marcus Nonius Balbus along with a statue of him.
Next we came upon temples. Here’s a picture of what’s left of the temple of the four gods (Minerva, Neptune, Mercury and Volcano.
This is the House of Relief of Telephus. It is believed to be owned by the senator above along with the house next door and was three stories.
We took photos of us in the historic surroundings.
Next we stopped at what is called the large taberna (pub).
Even public wells were artistic.
The house of the black room was in pretty good shape and had many interesting features.
The tile floor around the garden was beautiful.
Not sure what part of the house this picture was taken.
Here’s the black room.
The hall of Augustals was used by worshippers of the emperor Augustus.
This fresco depicts the entrance of Hercules in the Olympus with Juno and Minerva.
The baths were separate for men and women. Sister T is reading a wall plaque about the men’s baths.
The next room in the baths had this beautiful mosaic floor.
Continuing on down the street…
The house of Neptune and Amphitrite gets it name from this mosaic in one room.
The same room has this interesting decoration.
The house of Samnite was built in 2nd century BC and modified over the next couple of centuries.
The house of the Wooden Partition is very impressive due to it’s size, garden and design.
The view looking out to the street.
The dwelling known as House of the Skeleton is due to remains found in the 1800’s. It should be known for the frescoes.
This shrine is supported but still beautiful.
Frescoes all across the top of the wall above the fountain.
The house of Argus had an upper floor lost after the digs were abandoned in 1875.
The ruins here were so much better preserved than Pompeii although I recommend visiting both in a lifetime. We spent 2 1/2 hours at the site. We did buy water at a machine for 1 euro and peruse the bookstore but didn’t buy anything there.
On the walk back we stopped at a pizzeria on the street to the ruins, Terra D’Ercole. They had handed us this flyer when we waked by on the way in.
They started to seat up in the upstairs dining area which would probably have been very nice BUT you access it via a tiny, spiral staircase.
Instead we asked to be seated in the garden seating across the street (which is also overflow parking). After perusing the menu we ordered and I got prosciutto and cheese pizza with a bottle of water…
Sister T had the quattro pizza with a coke.
It came fairly quickly and I enjoyed every bite. I’m sure it’s not the best pizza in the area but it was very convenient!
We made it to our meeting spot with 10 minutes to spare. Of course the bus was 15 minutes late and for some it was standing room only. Fortunately Teresa and I had seats. When we got on the ship, we went up to the buffet for ice water and an ice cream cone before heading to the cabin for a nap.
Dinner and a Show
After a two hour respite I got ready for the evening and started out with a citrus gem martini at Shakers.
We met up for dinner at O’Sheehan’s. I didn’t note what anyone else had except for chocolate malts.
My meal was tomato soup…
Chicken wings (Thai chili)…
and shepherds pie.
I didn’t like this but it’s probably because I’m not a fan of lamb. It looked delicious.
I ran from dinner to the epic theater to see Priscilla, Queen of the Desert.
It was a fantastic show and lasted 90 minutes or so. Loved every minute!
I decided to return to the cabin since tomorrow is a 6 am port call in Civitacheccia.
We got a towel animal for the first time. I was starting to think NCL didn’t have this nicety.
Here is today’s Freestyle (click for the PDF).
If you missed the other parts of the recap the links are below.
Next Vacation: Barcelona and Norwegian Epic
Barcelona Flights and Lodging Plans
Norwegian Epic: Port Call Plans
Traveling to Barcelona
Barcelona Day 1
Cava Winery Tour/Taste
La Sagrada Familia
Epic Embarkation Day
Epic Sea Day