Re: pompei and tours
You really don't need a tour. You can do this a lot less expensively - with a little planning on your own. Wherever you are starting from you need to get to Naples. Train is probably your best bet - faster and cheaper. Once in Naples take the Circumvesuviana train - which is just what it says it is, a train that circles Mt Vesuvius. You will leave the train at the Pompeii/Scavi stop and walk about 5 min's to the entrance to the Pompeii exhibit. It is a full day to experience the full Pompeii site - but - I would suggest trying to fit in a trip to the Naples museum. Most of the precious artifacts have been removed and taken to this museum.
Now just to clarify - I did not go to the Mountain at all. We only viewed it from the train - so I'm not much help there. Good luck
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