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Visit Vesuvius in Naples: all our tips for planning your visit and mistakes to avoid

Vesuvius, an active volcano, is an incredible natural site not to be missed during your stay in the Naples area. At the top of the crater, you’ll have an unforgettable view of the Bay of Naples, 25 kilometers away.

We advise you to prepare your visit well in advance. We’re used to organizing our own excursions, so for Vesuvius we had a hard time finding useful and, above all, up-to-date information.

We have gathered all our advices in this article (buying a ticket, parking, hiking trails on a map…) and we explain you the mistakes not to make.

How to get to Vesuvius?

From Naples

  • Car: if you have rented a car, from Naples you can reach the Vesuvius parking lot in about 40 minutes. As already mentioned in our previous articles about Naples and its region, we advise you to be vigilant, because driving in this city is sporty and the traffic rules are not always respected.

    To compare rental prices, we recommend the RentalCars website, which compares the prices of hundreds of car rental companies to find the best price. To give you an idea of prices, we found a car for €50 a day at Naples airport.
  • Bus: departure from Piazza Piedigrotta (EAC company), cost around €20 return, with 1h45 on site.

Excursion to visit Vesuvius in complete peace of mind from Naples

We recommend that you book an all-inclusive tour (pick-up from your hotel, tickets, parking, shuttle bus and on-site guide) with a driver from your Naples base, so there’s no need to organize anything (if you want to visit Vesuvius on your own, you’ll need to get organized), and you’ll be able to enjoy the beauty of the site to the full!

Vesuvius and Pompeii and Pompeii in 1 day from Naples

➡️ To save time, you can combine a visit to the archaeological site of Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius on the same day. Pick up is possible from your hotel, train station or port.

In the morning, you’ll walk around the incredible Pompeii site with your guide, who will give you explanations and anecdotes, then after your meal (included), you’ll have 1h30 to go up, around the crater and back down again.

Your ticket for this tour includes transportation, entrance tickets, guides and lunch for a very attractive price.

From Pompeii

  • Car : if you’ve hired a car, from Pompeii you can reach the Vesuvius parking lot in around 40 minutes (the same distance as from Naples).
  • Bus: departure from the Pompei Scavi station, located next to the archaeological park, the trip lasts about 1 hour with the company EAV, count about 20€ round trip per person. Once there, you will have 1h30 to go up to the crater.

From Herculaneum

  • Car: Vesuvius is located only 12km from the archaeological site ofHerculaneum, if you have rented a car you will reach the parking lot in 25 minutes.

  • Bus: with Vesuvio Expressthe bus located in front of the station, which connects to Vesuvius in 30 minutes for 10€ round trip per person. Once there, you will have 1h30 to go up to the crater.
Getting to Vesuvius from the archaeological site of Herculaneum

Mistakes not to make

We were quite surprised by the lack of information on the official website and the rather mixed feedback from other travelers about the organization on site.

If you’re organizing this excursion yourself, we’ll give you the mistakes to avoid:

  • Before arriving on site, you must reserve your tickets and time slot or book your tickets. for an excursion (ticket + trip + guide included). As you can read on many comments on the internet, if you arrive without a reservation, you won’t be able to access the site even if you’ve already paid for the parking lot and shuttle…
  • Download your tickets before you get to the site, because the connection is very very bad at the ticket office.
  • You can also book your parking space in advance: once you’ve bought your ticket, you’ll receive a link to the parking lot.
  • Bring good shoes, as the climb to the crater is steep and slippery. Also bring water and snacks as there are no restaurants at the summit.
  • Remember to pack warm clothes, as the wind can be cool at altitude.
Vesuvius hiking trail overlooking the Bay of Naples

Where to buy your tickets?

We recommend that youbuy your tickets and book your time slot online, well in advance.

In order to save preparation time, you can also book your tickets with driver from Naples (+ guide on site).

Where to park?

The Vesuvius site is equipped with a parking lot, with spaces along the road, which must be reserved in advance, otherwise you may not be able to park.

When you book your ticket, you’ll receive a link to the parking lot, or you can reserve it on this website, either way for €6.

Afterwards, a shuttle bus will take you up to the start of the hiking trails (€3). There is no need to make a reservation for the shuttle.

Climbing Vesuvius on foot: our hiking tips

When to visit Vesuvius?

As is often the case, we recommend that you get up early and be at the entrance before 9:00 a.m., so you can avoid groups and crowds. You can take a nap once you get back to your hotel!

Vesuvius crater Naples

How to climb Vesuvius on foot? (map)

From the parking lot, a shuttle (3€ round trip) will take you up to the beginning of the hiking trail (at the ticket office) which will lead you to the crater. You can also walk these 2km on foot, the path is accessible but not very interesting.

Then, after a 30-minute climb along a wide, signposted path , you’ll reach the summit of Vesuvius, which rises to an altitude of around 1,200 m, offering an unforgettable view of the Bay of Naples and the interior of the crater.

At the summit, the first part of the tour (about 20 minutes) is done in a group with a guide who will explain the volcano to you, and then you can explore the crater on your own.

Tours are generally in Italian and English, but don’t hesitate to ask for a tour in French, as some guides speak French.

Afterwards, allow around 40 minutes at the summit to enjoy the view to the full, and remember to bring warm clothing, as the wind often blows.

Where to sleep near Vesuvius?

After your excursion to Vesuvius, you have several options: book a hotel close to Vesuvius, or stay at one of the region’s other points of interest: Naples, Pompeii or Herculaneum.

In Pompeii, next to the archaeological site

We stayed at Il Vecchio Fauno, a 5-minute walk from the ruins, the town center and the train station. Our room was spacious, clean and well decoratedAs an added bonus, there are paintings on display in the hotel’s common areas. The breakfast is very good, homemade cake, blinis, eggs, ham, fruit etc…

The hosts are lovely and will gladly answer all your questions, which is always great! If you’re coming by car, parking is free, which saves you ten euros or so and a lot of stress! In short, excellent value for money!

hotel pompei

To make your search for accommodation in Naples easier, we’ve put together an article detailing the most interesting neighborhoods and those to avoid, as well as our best hotel addresses.

In Naples, the heart of the historic center

We recommend the Hotel Garibaldi Rooms, ideally located right next to the main railway station, and therefore the airport shuttle bus stop right in the historic center, so you can do everything on foot. We slept there for 3 nights in a quiet place.

hotel Naples

To help you find what you’re looking for, we recommend that you use the Booking search engine to select your accommodation. By filtering the scores above 8/10, we’re rarely disappointed. We advise you to book as early as possible, as Naples remains one of Italy’s most popular tourist destinations.

Pompeii archaeological site near Mount Vesuvius

Vesuvius is one of the most surprising places we have ever visited. We loved writing this article, which allowed us to immerse ourselves in this extraordinary day. The views over the Bay of Naples and its islands, including Capri, will live long in our memories.

We hope we’ve helped you plan your day. Don’t hesitate to book and plan your visit well in advance, as this site requires a little more organization to get the most out of it and, above all, not to be disappointed. Like some passengers who arrive at the ticket office without a ticket and have no choice but to turn back (even though they’ve already paid for the parking lot and shuttle)…

You can also combine a visit to Vesuvius and the archaeological site of Pompeii on the same day.

Feel free to leave us a quick note or 5 stars below, to tell us if you’re planning this trip, to ask any questions you may have, here or on Instagram, we’ll get back to you with great pleasure.

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My name is Floriane, and I've been an adventurer and travel enthusiast since I was very young. More than anything, I love sharing our travel stories and tips with you. We love short getaways as well as long trips. This blog was born after our backpacking trip around the world. We also went on a family tour of Europe.
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