Visited the ruins of Herculaneum, a seaside resort which was buried after the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79 A.D. Most people visit Pompeii due to the size of the excavation. Herculanium, about 1/4th the size of Pompeii & receives about 20% of the visitors, making it a more intimate site. Only 1/3rd of the ruins are excavated due to the new city of Herculaneum occupied by residents above the ruins.
It was discovered in 1709 (2 years before Pompeii) by Prince Elbeuf while he tunneled for treasures that were thought to have been buried in the mud flows from the eruption.
Herculaneum was a seaside resort for the wealthy. Many of the houses were more elaborately constructed. The town is closer to Vesuvius and was buried under a heavy lava flow and mud thus preserving much of the town’s homes and town. We viewed preserved wood, the water system using lead pipes, and thermal baths. There are homes and the market showing shops and the way of life with many of paintings from the walls of the homes still in good condition. Thanks to the recent Packard foundation, additional restoration has taken place and it is a site well worth visiting. Our guide, Carmine was invaluable and very passionate about sharing the history of Herculaneum.