How to Visit the Pompeii Ruins

Hopefully, this small guide on how to get to the Pompeii ruins will help you plan your visit to the Ruins.

The ruins are situated about 14 miles from Naples.

What happened to Pompeii ruins – a quick history

The once-thriving Roman city was buried under volcanic ash when Mount Vesuvius thought to have erupted in 79 AD. The city is well preserved because it did not get destroyed but was buried under ash.

  • The largest archeological dig in the world. (UNESCO heritage site)
  • Origins uncertain, but it was founded by Campanian Oscans, and subsequently occupied by the Greek, the Samnites, and Romans after that.
  • Became a Roman city in 80 BC
  • Rediscovered in 1594 by architect Domenico Fontana
  • The dig started in 1748
  • Out of the 66 hectares,  44 have now been excavated.

Getting to the Pompeii ruins

Pompeii entrances

Pompeii has two main entrances. And another exit only.

  • Porta Marina (Pompeii scavi train station)
  • Piazza Anfiteatro (Pompeii FS train station)
  • Villa Dei Misteri (Exit only) – But a long walk to Pompeii Scavi station

I used Pompeii Scavi entrance. It is the easiest to get to.

pompeii scavi entrance




It is best to stay in Naples to visit the ruins. Book a few nights in Naples, and then you can visit Pompei, Mount Vesuvius, and the Amalfi coast in several day trips.

The easiest way to get to the ruins is by train from Naples. Use the Trainline app to book tickets and get to a station called Pompeii Scavi. There are many entrances to the site, but I used the one near this station.

From Naples, start at Piazza Giuseppe Garibaldi Train station. It takes 30 mins.


pompeii scavi train station
Pompeii Scavi train station

Visiting from Rome to Pompeii by train

You will need to get on a train to Naples first and then change and follow the steps above.

Tickets for Pompeii ruins

Us the website to buy tickets in advance to avoid waiting in line.

You can also buy the tickets when you arrive.

Entry to the site is done in time slots, so if you decide to buy the tickets on arriving you may have to wait a lot during the busy season.

It is best to buy online and arrive 15 minutes earlier than your allotted time slot.

Other options: 

You can also use the following. I recommend


pompeii ruins - do not buy tickets from here

pompeii ruins price list
Source opening hours

Check the official site for more information.

Downloadable Pompeii map

Download maps and guides from here

Guided tours to Pompeii ruins

For guided tours check Getyourguide website.

What to see inside Pompeii ruins (highlights)

Here is my vlog showing around the ruins.

If you have less than two hours focus on these sights.


The Forum

As you enter through the porta marina entrance, the first big open space you will come across is the forum.

pompeii ruins forum

Walk down the ancient streets and explore the damaged buildings pompeii ruins street


Great Palestra

pompeii ruins great palace


pompeii ruins amphitheatre


If you have more time proceed to see the preserved bodies.

Pompeii FAQ

  • How much time is needed to visit the ruins? – you can do the main highlights in 1-2 hours. For a comprehensive exploration set aside 4-6 hours.
  • Can you see Pompeii in a day? – You can easily see the whole site in a day.
  • Can you do Pompeii & Vesuvius in one day? – You maybe can. Definitely wouldn’t recommend it. Climbing up and down Vesuvius can be exhausting also you need a good chunk of time at Pompeii to visit the highlights, they are far out from each other.


  • Make sure you bring good shoes, as it is a bit difficult to walk on the cobbled streets. Ladies, for sure no heels.
  • There is not much shade inside, as the whole thing is exposed to direct sunlight. So use sunscreen, even when not in summer.
  • It can get really hot in summer, so carry some water with you. Or bring a water bottle, you can fill it up at the water fountains.
  • It is not allowed to climb or lean against the buildings, so be careful not to do this. There was an incident very recently where the authorities were after an Instagram influencer for doing so. Be respectful, it is an old piece of history.
  • There are a cafe, canteen and a toilet near the Porta Marina entrance.
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