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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples Tour


tour code: RIVPCBNT
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples Tour

Global Coach Tours» Riviera Travel » Italy


Prices shown joining from London Gatwick with accommodation at the Hotel Villa Maria. Other airports and hotels available, please ask for details.

8 Days from £ per passenger

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All tours are priced in British Pounds (GBP)

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Itinerary


Day 1


You should arrive at the airport to take your flight to Naples. On arrival a coach will take us to Sorrento, a lovely base for our holiday (journey is approximately one hour, fifteen minutes). You have a choice of carefully selected hotels. They are all well managed and of a very good quality within their category. All have good restaurants where we take breakfast and dinner.


Day 2 - Walking Tour, Sorrento


Sorrento has been a resort for centuries and has developed with great style, so today we have a rather lazy day commencing with a short walking tour. The Romans were aware of Sorrento’s attributes and the area is dotted with the remains of their opulent villas. During the 18th century it became part of the Grand Tour for Europe’s aristocracy with classic hotels being built around the old cliff-top town. Today, spared the excesses of modern development, Sorrento is delightful and so typical of the south of Italy.  Tiny winding streets lined with tall, seemingly crumbling buildings complete with their faded façades of ochre, yellow and magenta are now home to superb shops and cosy restaurants. The stylish young astride their Vespas are everywhere, and on every bench sit splendidly turned out senior citizens, superbly dressed no matter how hot the weather – all having time to pass a few words in the street.


Day 3 - Naples Archaeological Museum & Pompeii


Today, we take the drive north around the bay to the cosmopolitan city of Naples where we have a guided tour of the Archaeological Museum (guided tour is for 2015 only) which is one of the finest of its kind. When the excavations commenced in nearby Pompeii and Herculaneum, the best of the finds were brought here and displayed to an eager public. There is a very extensive display of remarkably preserved mosaics giving a superb insight into the way of life and even sense of humour of the ordinary Roman. Other sections include murals, figures, fine pottery, ropes and even preserved food. One of the central displays is of some of the largest classical sculpture ever found and the museum as a whole complements your visit to Pompeii admirably.


We all know the story of Pompeii, however, it is more than a series of ruins: the state of preservation is astonishing and even if you are not interested in history you cannot fail to be moved by the scale of the city, the construction of which appears to put our modern structures to shame, especially when you consider machines were unavailable. Much of our knowledge about the way of life of the ordinary Romans, their habits, social structure, class systems and domestic arrangements has come from here. Some of the baths are virtually complete as are various murals and mosaics, with some buildings having graffiti describing political events, romantic entanglements and gossip of the time! You can even see the traffic calming measures, how the one-way system operated and appreciate the very high standard of living evident in Roman Pompeii. The atmosphere is eerie, as preserved for all time are the pained facial expressions of the victims of Vesuvius. We will have a guided tour of this fascinating city, before returning to our hotel.


Day 4 - Free Day, Sorrento


Today you have a free day in Sorrento to spend as you wish. You could take a boat trip, shop in the high class boutiques, have a lazy lunch or simply catch up on some reading – the choice is yours..


Day 5 - Capri


Capri is renowned the world over for its outstanding natural beauty and today we take the short boat ride to the island. It has long been the most sought-after part of the Bay of Naples: not only attracting three Roman emperors, but also writers such as D.H. Lawrence and George Bernard Shaw who sought inspiration here. Famous names such as Gracie Fields and Graham Greene, amongst many others, have made it their home. It is easy to see why it is so adored: as we approach the island you can see small fishing boats rising and falling with the gentle waves, with pretty shops and restaurants lining the busy quayside.


The picturesque main town is perched on the hill looking down on the quaint harbour below. You may wish to visit the famous Blue Grotto – the large cavern which can only be reached by boat and by a freak of nature is bathed in incandescent blue light, hence its name. Yes, Capri really does deserve its reputation as a Garden of Eden. We then take the boat to the mainland and return to our hotel.


Day 6 - Vesuvius


This morning, you will have the chance to explore the slopes of Mount Vesuvius. Bizarrely enough, the bottom of the volcano is now populated again with the lower slopes producing some of the finest wine in the area! The coach will take us most of the way up, giving panoramic views of the whole bay and the almost lunar landscape caused by the last eruption. You will then have the opportunity to climb to the summit and peer into the crater, at a height of approximately 1200m above sea level. We return to the hotel early afternoon, providing you with free time for the rest of the day.


Day 7 - The Amalfi Coast


When you see it, we think you will agree the Amalfi coastline is, as it claims to be, Europe’s most beautiful. Today we explore the coast as it winds around towering cliffs, dipping almost sheer to the beautiful blue sea below with birds soaring above and the air heavy with the typically Mediterranean scent of pine forest and wild flowers. We arrive above the exclusive resort of Positano clinging pyramid-like to the cliff-face, giving a view, which has inspired countless artists and today is the haunt of even more numerous celebrities. Next it’s Amalfi, a picturesque village in a gorgeous setting, possessing charm in abundance and perhaps the highlight of the coast.


Just inland is the stunning village of Ravello, with its unrivalled location perched like an eagle’s nest on a shelf above Amalfi, affording some amazing views. It has an ambience of its own and a wonderful main square surrounded by delightful small cafés and the Villa Rufolo – once the headquarters of a city-state, now a charming collection of medieval buildings, statues, tasteful walled gardens and the setting for Wagner’s opera Parsifal.


Day 8


Today we return to Naples airport, at the appropriate time, after a really memorable and unique tour.


Return flights

Seven nights in a choice of three, four and four-star superior hotels in Sorrento with breakfast and dinner

Walking tour of Sorrento, one of Italy’s most charming towns

Cruise to the stunning island of Capri home to three Roman Emperors, DH Lawrence and Graham Greene

Visit to the magnificent Vesuvius one of Europe’s highest volcanoes experiencing it’s unique volcanic topography

?Guided tour of Naples Archaeological Museum, displaying some of the ancient world’s finest exhibits

Guided tour of astonishingly preserved Pompeii, a city frozen in time

Tour of the astonishing Amalfi coast – one of the world’s most beautiful coastlines

Visit to charming, hill-top Ravello with its incredible panoramic views and the setting for Wagner’s opera Parsifal

Escorted by an experienced tour manager




Accommodation




Hotel Villa Maria - (www.hotelvillamaria.it) three-star rated, provides all the comforts of a modern, purpose built property. The bedrooms are tastefully decorated and of course have a private bathroom, TV and air conditioning. It is in an excellent central location next to the maze-like old town and only 500m from Piazza Tasso, the lovely main square in the centre of Sorrento. The hotel has a good quality restaurant and an extensive bar and lounge furnished with pastel coloured fabrics, which create a relaxing atmosphere and the perfect place to unwind after a hard day sightseeing. The swimming pool and adjacent sun terrace is the ideal spot to soak up the sun.




Single supplement £199 per person; Sea facing room (with balcony) £89 per person; Side sea facing room (with balcony) £79 per person




Hotel La Badia - (www.hotellabadia.it) three-star rated, is based on the sympathetic conversion of a 16th century abbey, retaining much of the original stonework and giving a superb ambience to this small family-run hotel. Its location is wonderful, just behind Sorrento, with amazing views of the sea, Sorrento itself, Vesuvius and Naples on a clear day. It is set amongst four acres of its own lovely gardens and fragrant lemon and orange groves. By road it is approximately two miles from Sorrento. There is also a more direct 400 metre pathway, which is steep and narrow but illuminated at night. Should you not wish to use this you can either use the free pre-bookable taxi service, or the local bus which stops just outside. The hotel has a swimming pool with gorgeous views so typical of the area and is ideal for a refreshing dip. The hotel restaurant serves good quality local cuisine and, weather permitting, you may dine on the terrace overlooking the bay. There is also a comfortable bar to relax in after sightseeing.




Single supplement £179 per person; Sea facing room (no balcony) £55 per person




Hotel Metropole - (www.metropolesorrento.com) three-star rated, situated on the coastal road approximately one kilometre from the Old Town. This charming hotel, purpose built to a high standard in its own attractive gardens, offers some wonderful views of the Bay of Naples and spectacular Vesuvius. It has already benefited from a complete renovation by its very professional family owners, with the result an outstanding hotel within its category, whilst still retaining its individual character. The public rooms feature typical traditional terracotta floors covered with rugs, Italian high-quality furniture, high arched ceilings and beautiful Venetian glassware and are very tastefully decorated in classic Neapolitan style. The rooms themselves are very well appointed with bathrooms, air-conditioning and have a private balcony. The grounds are lovely too: a series of terraced interlocking patios bedecked with colourful flowers and plants, where you can escape to a private, shady corner to catch up on some reading perhaps - what a refreshing change from some of the larger ‘chain’ hotels! There is a good size outdoor swimming pool and sun terrace, with the extensive views typical of the area - just the spot to relax in after a hard day’s sightseeing! Enjoy good quality local and international cuisine in the hotel restaurant before winding down with a drink in the comfortable lounge and bar.




Single supplement £199 per person




The centrally located  four-star superior Grand Europa Palace (www.europapalace.com) enjoys one of Sorrento’s most breathtaking vantage points, directly on the cliff-top with uninterrupted sea views across the Bay of Naples to Vesuvius. Once private villas, some of Sorrento’s oldest and most classic buildings were wonderfully converted to a hotel during the 19th century, set in lush landscaped gardens whilst in the spacious public areas, design has opted to retain the elegance and charm associated with the splendour of the Grand Tour. Lavish Venetian glass chandeliers grace the ‘coved’ ceilings, fine art adorns the walls, seating is on tasteful high backed chairs and sofas, high windows are elegantly dressed with flowing pastel-coloured curtains whilst wide corridors are lined with bronze and marble sculptures.




The hotel consists of two charmingly restored 19th Century former villa’s, one of which hosts the exceptionally opulent reception area and restaurant. The bedrooms are located in both buildings, Standard rooms and Sea View rooms are in the main building and Standard rooms are also located in the Villino Maria across a pathway opposite, room types are all of an equivalent standard. Bedrooms at the Europa Palace are spacious, finished in rich deep colours with an overall design reflecting the hotel’s epic past. All rooms are air conditioned with mini bar, safe and satellite tv.




Take a lift down to the hotel’s private pool, surrounded by Roman columns and enjoy a well deserved relaxing moment on the private lido just steps from the sea and the poolside bar is at hand to serve you a chilled cocktail after sightseeing.




The hotel’s enthusiastic and intriguingly named owner, Professor Ercolano (Herculaneum!) is very proud of his restaurant, serving classically executed, mainly Sorrentine cuisine with international dishes too, to a very high standard. With views across the bay the setting that has inspired so many has also clearly worked on the Kitchen Director and his brigade of Chefs.




Sat on the regal terrace, drink in hand and soaking up the stupendous views you can be forgiven for thinking life does not get much better.




Sea facing room with balcony £135 per person (£169 per person for 2015 dates); Standard Room (main building) £30




Hotel Vue D’Or - (www.lavuedor.com) The three-star superior rated Hotel Vue D’Or is a superbly apt name meaning “view of gold”, for a really lovely hotel. Built in a style typical of the region, it has benefited from a most sympathetic renovation programme by the highly professional family owners, with the result an absolute delight, and in exceptional taste. The lounge, bar and public rooms are very comfortable using traditional tiled floors, wrought iron staircases and chandeliers with original, exposed stonework adding to the relaxed charm which permeates the entire property. The Restaurant is very good quality with the emphasis both on local and international specialities and the rooms themselves are extremely comfortable making use of cool pastel colours throughout with lovely bathrooms, air-conditioning and balconies with views of either the Sorrentine peninsular or the Bay of Naples which can only be described as spectacular. The Outdoor pool and terrace is the ideal place to enjoy a drink after the day’s sightseeing. Set in its own grounds, adorned by a wealth of terracotta potted flowered shrubs, what really sets the hotel in a class of its own is its lovely location, set behind the town of Sorrento, on a hillside surrounded by beautiful undulating countryside, with the most amazing views of Naples, together with the Bay, Vesuvius and Sorrento itself. The air, warm and pure, is full of the scented aromas of pines and flowers, so reminiscent of the Mediterranean. Set less than four miles from the town centre, should you wish to visit the town you can use the hotel’s shuttle service or there is a local bus which stops just outside the hotel.




Single supplement £219 per person; Sea facing room with balcony £99 per person




The beautiful 4-star superior, Aminta (http://www.aminta.com/) is one of the finest hotels in Sorrento. Located on a hilltop, just above the town and 3km from the centre, the Hotel Aminta has been built highlighting to superb effect, its wonderful position giving a breathtaking panorama of the Sorrentine Peninsula, Mount Vesuvius and the deep blue Bay of Naples. The elegant pastel décor has been carefully chosen to accompany the natural beauty of its surroundings. Spacious public areas create an aura of relaxation and the hotel boasts a welcoming pool, terrace and its adjacent lounge offers you a seat in the “living-room of the world”, whilst the talented chef prides himself on preparing and serving traditional cuisine in a truly memorable setting. The bedrooms are comfortable and furnished with tasteful elegance admirably reflecting its status. All rooms offer direct-dial telephone, fridge, hairdryer, satellite TV, safe, wi-fi and air-conditioning. The hotel offers a courtesy shuttle bus service to Sorrento town throughout the day and evening.




Single supplement £199 per person. Sea view with balcony £159 per person




One of Sorrento’s most tasteful hotels, the four-star, family-ownedMichelangelo (http://michelangelohotel.it/en/) is superbly centrally located, literally just a few minutes’ walk from Piazza Tasso, the hub of local life, set back from the road and opposite some lemon gardens promoting a real haven of tranquillity.




Originally structured around the 7th century stone tower the property has a unique heritage whilst the rooms themselves are light, spacious and airy with evident excellent attention to detail. Their understated elegance makes extensive use of dark woods, local, terracotta tiles and tasteful fabrics and of course are air-conditioned. The comfortable lounge is ideal in which to relax, whilst in the restaurant, the talented chef specialises in local Sorrentine cuisine. The swimming pool is surrounded by geraniums, jasmine and oleanders giving that wonderful Mediterranean aroma to the whole scene whilst on the roof there is a sun terrace with sun loungers and views to the sea. In short, a very well-managed hotel in the heart of Sorrento with exceptional traditional hospitality.




Single supplement £169 per person




The four-star Grand Hotel Cesare Augusto (http://www.hotelcesareaugusto.com/en/) is extremely well located in Sorrento’s centre providing a superb base for exploration of the Neapolitan Riviera and the resort itself. Only steps away from Piazza Tasso and Corso Italia, Sorrento’s main square and shopping street, the Cesare Augusto could not be in a better position plus offers spacious bedrooms, tastefully decorated with the traditional ceramic tiles so typical of Sorrento with generous use of polished hardwoods. All bedrooms offer mini-bar, air-conditioning, telephone, hair-dryer, safe, satellite TV and free wi-fi.




The hotel restaurant serves an impressive range of traditional Sorrentine dishes blended with Mediterranean and international cuisine. The hotel roof-top offers not only spectacular views across Sorrento to the Bay of Naples but is also the setting for a relaxing bar around the roof-top swimming pool. Public areas provide a spacious and relaxed environment although due to the Hotel’s superb location you will probably find yourself spending most of your time visiting the picturesque alleys and shopping areas  lined with fashion boutiques and coffee shops so typical of Italian life. The Hotel is partially surrounded by its own landscaped gardens with towering pine trees providing welcome shade.




Single supplement £159 per person




Please note: Where hotels feature a swimming pool, pools are open in the summer months weather permitting.

The price of this holiday is per person and is based on two people sharing a twin room. Single and sea facing rooms are subject to availability at the relevant supplement (see accommodation tab for details). The price includes return flights as indicated, seven nights with breakfast and dinner, airport departure taxes and transfers, all tours as mentioned, guided tours of Pompeii, Naples Archaeological Museum and Sorrento, guided tour of  Herculaneum, cruise to Capri and the services of a Riviera tour manager. Please note that the Mediterraneo is Bed and Breakfast  for 2017 dates

Where hotels feature a swimming pool, pools are open in the summer months weather permitting. There will be a charge for swimming pool towels of €2 per towel per day at the Vue D’Or, Villa Maria and the La Badia.

Occasionally the opening times of the places of interest varies, and if this happens we may change the order of visits, however the overall content will not be reduced.