This tour includes an archaeological English-speaking guide (private - only for you) at Your disposal for 2 hours
THE ENTRANCE FEES ARE NOT INCLUDED.
Most part of Herculaneum has step-free access and, without doubt, this place is more wheelchair-friendly than Pompeii ruins. Your tour will include the visit to several buildings with step-free entrances, but in some cases, however, guests may need the assistance of a member of their party to fully maximize the quality of the guided visit. Obviously, Your private guide will help You in case of need.
You’ll meet our archaeological English-speaking guide by the ticket office of Herculaneum ruins to start this guided visit (duration: 2 hours).
Herculaneum, a small commercial town, was buried like Pompeii during the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD. But unlike Pompeii, Herculaneum was not buried by ash and lapilli stones, but by a real river of mud that destroyed its roads and buildings. The solidification of this mud seriously damaged the buildings of the town (unlike Pompeii, where the buildings are very well preserved) but it allowed the great preservation also of other materials such as wood. The excavations of Herculaneum began in 1738 under King Charles of Bourbon. At the beginning they dug some wells and tunnels which allowed to find many objects, sculptures and inscriptions.
In fact, at Herculaneum were found many jewels and precious ornamental artifacts. Many of these findings were found in the houses of Herculaneum in wooden boxes. Another group of jewels was instead found still worn by the people who died during the cataclysmic eruption, on their skeletons that were scattered around the city. Anyway most skeletons were located under the boathouses near the shore of the sea, not far from the spa of the city. In this regard it is impressive the consonance of the dramatic testimony written by Pliny the Younger covering the last acts of life in the towns affected by the eruption, and the drama of refugees who brought with them their jewellery and coins during the run for salvation.
Later outdoors excavations were carried out that brought to light the structure of the villas and other buildings. The town planning of the city is constituted by a series of alleys that intersect each other at right angles. Shortly before being destroyed by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius, many sumptuous villas were built in Herculaneum along the wall to the south of the city. An important example is the famous Villa of the Papyri, where nearly two thousand papyri of philosophical subject were found. A significant number of buildings was instead intended to house artisans and workers. Among the most beautiful buildings found in the excavations of Herculaneum are worth visiting the House of Neptune and Amphitrite (decorated with beautiful mosaics), the House of the Mosaic atrium (an aristocratic residence built in a scenic position), the House of Argus (whose name comes from the painting, lost today, depicting Argus guarding Io, the nymph beloved by Zeus and turned into a heifer) the House of the Deers (which owes its name to the wonderful sculptures, found in its garden, representing a deer attacked by dogs). Another important building is the House of the Bicentenary, which in the modern name celebrates the memory of two hundred years since the beginning of the excavation of Herculaneum. In this house, which extends over two floors, were found about 150 wax tablets in a box of carbonized wood. The house, accessible from the decumanus maior and therefore in a privileged position in the public area of the city, is considered the overall appearance of a mansion of considerable proportions.