Day 6: Today we headed out of Rome for a trip South. We reserved a van and driver to drive us to Pompeii. Our guide met us there and took us on a tour of the Pompeii ruins. Pompeii was a large city that was covered by 20 feet of volcanic ash in the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD. The city was preserved because of the lack of air and moisture that the cover of ash afforded it. During the excavation, plaster was used to fill in the voids in the ash layer that once held bodies. The casts were of the people and animals in the position in which they died. The area is visited by 2.5 million people each year. We had a guide that knew her way around, so we were able to avoid the crowds.
We then headed to the Amalfi Coast. The vistas along the way were fabulous. We hugged the mountain side and soaked in the beautiful coastline and ocean views. We stopped for lunch in the quaint town of Positano. The town is a series of downward passages that end on the beach. We lunched in a garden patio on the beach. We did not want to leave for two reasons: we didn't want to leave this beautiful spot in the sun and the thought of the long walk up to our van.
We next headed to Mount Vesuvius. We planned to hike up to the top and look into the crater. Unfortunately, after a long and winding switchback ride up to the hiking area, the hiking for the day was stopped. There was not enough time to get to the top and back before sunset. So we headed back to Rome.