How do you get to Mount Vesuvius from Pompeii?

Whilst visiting Pompeii, you might as well visit its nemesis and reason for its preservation – Mount Vesuvius. If you’re unsure how to visit the volcano then find out here!

Mount Vesuvius and Pompeii go hand in hand, with the City of Pompeii famously destroyed by Mount Vesuvius’ eruption in 79 A.D. So, it’s unsurprising that so many travellers choose to visit both on their trip to Italy. But what is the best way to get to the volcano?

The History of Mount Vesuvius

Mount Vesuvius is very old, dating back about 300,000 years. Due to its age, Vesuvius has had many eruptions throughout its lifetime, estimated to be in the high 30s. But it is famous for its eruption in 79 A.D, condemned 2000 people to their untimely deaths. The people of Pompeii were unaware that Mount Vesuvius was a volcano, as it had not erupted since 1800 BC. Vesuvius blasted waves of scorching ‘pyroclastic flows’ down on the city. This brutally and efficiently killed the citizens of Pompeii, with a mix of poisonous gas, ash, and rock. The wall of hot smoke was over 32 km tall and gathered speeds of 700km per hour. The volcano soon buried the city in a thick layer of ash and dirt, which resulted in the preservation of Pompeii. Explaining these facts you might start to doubt whether to visit the volcano at all, especially with an eruption overdue. But, unlike our fellow Pompeiians, Mount Vesuvius is now watched around the clock to tracks the mountain’s developments and give plenty of warning to the surrounding areas if an eruption is about to take place. Not to mention the national park Mount Vesuvius is situated in is beautiful and productive, dotted with small farms and wineries which still take advantage of the fertile, volcanic soil. Remember, no tours would run if there was any danger of Vesuvius erupting, you can be sure of that!

How to get to the Mount Vesuvius

Still need a little more convincing? Well, why not take comfort from the millions of others who have climbed the mountain and visited the crater? Since the 1600 visitors have been climbing the steep slopes of Mount Vesuvius to get a closer glimpse of the sleeping giant. Considered one of the more “exotic” stops on the Grand Tour (a 17th and 18th-century custom where the upper-class travelled through Europe), Mount Vesuvius has been attracting tourists from around the world, some of whom have never seen a volcano before. Since the 18th century organisations have been set up to allow people to be accompanied by expert guides up the final stretch of the mountain trail. The trail is about 4 km up and back, with a change in altitude of about 140 metres and an average slope of 14%. Although this might sound daunting, as hikes go, this is not particularly difficult and requires zero hiking experience. What are you waiting for?

If you’re now decided on going, you might be wondering; what’s the best way to get there?

Your starting point is Pompeii station, with a service set up, including tickets and information for a Mount Vesuvius adventure.

  • Bus Tour

    Hop on a tour to grab a ride up to the Volcano. The bus tours usually depart every hour, operating from 9 am until 3 pm. The tour is approximately two-and-a-half hours, returning you back to where you started. If you are interested in learning more detail about Mount Vesuvius, we definitely recommend doing a guided tour. We should make it clear though that there is no way of getting to the top without doing some walking. The bus or shuttle you take will only take you up the lower part of Mount Vesuvius, the rest is up to you.

  • Public Bus

    Walk around 15 minutes into the town of Pompeii from the station to get to the public bus service. The local bus has a set timetable for trekking to and from Mount Vesuvius. The Bus comes and goes every 50 minutes, making it easier to hop on whenever you are ready! Make sure you have cash on you as you must pay for your ticket on board. Tickets to Mount Vesuvius can either be done at Pompeii Station or once you have arrived at your destination. This travel option is certainly the cheapest, giving you the best flexibility for your travels. Like we said above, the bus can only take you so far before the slope because too treacherous for a vehicle to climb. They usually stop at the ticket office, 1,050 metres above sea level, where the trail begins.

  • Car

    If you’re travelling Italy by car, you can reach the national park by taking the A3 Napoli-Salerno highway to the Torre del Greco or Herculaneum exit and follow the signs for Vesuvio. At 800 metres above sea level, there is an unstaffed parking area that costs just 5 euros for the day. You can then join the other shuttles to the ticket office that depart from here. We definitely recommend taking the shuttle as it is a tough climb from the parking area to the ticket office. Better to save your energy for the trail!

  • Bring your sturdiest and comfiest shoes and enjoy the climb! And whilst you’re here, be sure to check out our 1 Day Pompeii Tour from Rome!