Tuesday, 30 November. Naples (shopping) and Herculaneum (Ercolano). A stroll up and down two of Naples’ famous streets — Via Tribunali and the Spaccanapoli (actually several streets connected in a straight line) — the Centro Storico. These are busy, narrow streets lined with all kinds of shops and people. Cars, scooters, pedestrians, and the occasional midi-bus all coming and going. One destination for me was the Via San Gregorio Armeno, which is famous throughout Italy for its nativity figures — ranging from the basic Joseph/Mary/Jesus, to elaborate decorated miniature scenes with fountains, animated characters, etc. Tuesday it wasn’t too bad, but the crowds on weekends can be intense. Also, in the same neighborhood, the little shop “Limone” which makes Limoncello on the premises — as well as other flavored drinks and lemon-themed foods.
With time left in the day, and (once again) the weather forecasts being pretty much dead wrong, I took a trip to Herculaneum — just a handful of stops down the Circumvesuvio. A pleasant afternoon, very few tourists, and a very impressive site. I think that having seen Pompeii, with it’s immense scale, I was able to appreciate Herculaneum even more. Much smaller, you can see the whole site easily in an afternoon. But even better, the state of preservation is much better, due to the difference in how the city was covered. The upper floors in many two-storey building survived, and you can get a better idea of how things were. Another bonus is that; many, many frescoes remain. And while damaged, much of the detail is still there, giving you a much better idea of the look and color of some Roman houses.