Often when reading about Pompeii the information focuses a lot on the great human tragedy that occurred there after the volcano Vesuvius erupted in AD 79. In fact many of the photos I have seen really focus on the bodies found buried in ash. I didn’t know until I visited how huge the city of ancient Pompeii was.
Brad and I spent a day there and visited about a third of the site. It was really fascinating and I enjoyed our visit very much. Fortunately we were able to take a train from the Naples Central train station to the “Pompeii” stop which drops you immediately in front of the entrance. We had the option of buying tickets for just Pompeii or Pompeii and four other sites which I hear are really worth visiting. We decided on just Pompeii and I am glad we did! We arrived at about 9:00 AM and left at about 3:00 PM so for me that was a great day of site seeing. Very typical for our schedule.
Pompeii was clearly a thriving city it had a theater district with at least three large outdoor theaters plus a size able amphitheater as well. I was super impressed with this alone. Obviously entertainment was important to the people who lived there. We also saw and walked on many boulevards. Some had deep cart grooves showing how much commerce and transportation was going on.
Not every part of the site was open to visit but what we did see was pretty spectacular. If I had time to go again or for a recommendation I would say invest two days for Pompeii alone and one additional day for the other four sites. I have heard many people prefer Herculeneum. But I can’t say for sure since we didn’t visit. Also for those who know Brad and I we really love historic sites so take that into account when taking my suggestions.