A stark reminder of the malign forces that lie deep inside Vesuvius, Pompeii (Pompei in Italian) is Europe’s most compelling archaeological site and one of Italy’s most visited tourist attractions. Each year about 2.5 million people pour in to wander the ghostly shell of what was once a thriving commercial centre.
Its appeal goes beyond tourism, though. From an archaeological point of view, it’s priceless. Much of the value lies in the fact that it wasn’t simply blown away by Vesuvius: rather it was buried under a layer of lapilli (burning pumice stone), as Pliny the Younger describes in his celebrated account of the eruption.
About 1km down the road in modern Pompeii, the Santuario della Madonna del Rosario is a famous pilgrim destination.
Last updated: Feb 17, 2009
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7 November 2012
Across the globe, lucky souls are packing for Italy to explore the famed marvels of ancient Rome, find romance along...