Road trip baby!
So Saturday morning we woke up early as there was someone coming to pick up some trash and shortly after that we headed south for the weekend.
The purpose of the trip was for my host to go down to have a look at some Yurts with the hopes of getting one for the pool. But as the retailer was so far south we had to stop on the way.
It was all arranged that we would stay in a town called Scafati, about 30 minutes from Pompei and almost under Mount Vesuvius. The house actually belonged to my hosts grandparents but they no longer lived there so we had to first pick up the keys from their carer. After about 3 hours of driving we got to the house and settled in. The house itself is on the top floor of a housing complex and so it’s possible to climb up onto the roof and see Mt. Vesuvius. Having got our bearings together, the four of us; my host, two other volunteers, and myself, left the house to wander around the local area, and we even ventured to the nearby town of Pompei. After this, we came back to the house for some dinner from the pizza takeaway opposite and then went to bed.
The next morning, we all got up and my host set off to the south leaving us in charge of our day. We were given the option to stay in the town or venture further with him but all of us chose to stay put. As we only had one day near Pompei we had to choose either the ruins or the volcano. Now, having researched online the best options for both, I found a very good deal to see Vesuvius but this would unfortunately not leave us enough time to see the ruins. Thankfully, you can still see some of the ruins from the outside so we had to chance to look at that on our way. We used Busvia del Vesuvio to get up the volcano. They set off by shuttle bus from the main train station and took us up to a meeting point where we changed. We had to change into a 4 wheel drive bus that was capable of driving up the rugged terrain. As we entered the national park, it felt more like a scene from Jurassic Park and I was half expecting a T-Rex to appear at every hairpin corner. After about half an hour, we arrived at the bus park and from there we had a 20 minute hike to the very top.
At 1100km above sea level, you can see the towns of Pompei, Scafati and even Napoli on the other side. There was a tour guide at the entrance who gave a brief explanation of the volcano and then we were free to venture onwards. We all walked around the crater and I was absolutely amazed by the size of it. I was expecting big but nowhere near the size it actually was. We were told that the smoke coming from inside the crater was nothing to worry about and it was just the way to see the volcano is still active. After nearly two hours up the volcano, we got the truck and shuttle bus back down to the train station.
One of my group wanted some time on her own so the other volunteer and I headed back to the flat for some relaxation as our feet were dreadfully sore from all the walking.