Year 10 Classics trip to Pompeii and the Bay of Naples

After the somewhat horrendous meeting time of 3am our group of 38 Year 10 Latin, Greek and Classical Civilisation students set off for Gatwick. If the early start wasn’t bad enough, we then had to deal with broken baggage conveyer belts at Gatwick, and 11 students then had to wait up to three days for their suitcases to arrive in Naples, but after this shaky start the trip was incredibly successful.

On the first day we climbed Vesuvius and took in the panoramic views from the summit. Mrs Collier had prepared some ‘bedtime stories’ about Roman emperors for us on the coach back to the hotel, where we proceeded to have an Italian lesson from Mr Taylor (although resident Italian Chiara was a key moderator in this). A good end to a tiring day.

Our second day consisted of a visit to Pompeii which included such excitements as a visit to the House of Caecilius and an original performance of ‘in basilica’ from the Cambridge Latin Course, in the basilica of Pompeii. We concluded this interesting day with an evening out in Sorrento, where students explored the eclectic array of shops and the teachers enjoyed a café.

The next day featured a morning visit to Herculaneum where despite being dwarfed by the size of Pompeii the quality of excavation gave a richer insight into Roman life. Following a picturesque lunch at the Bay of Sorrento, we spent the afternoon on the island of Capri which, though enjoyable, was perhaps not suited to the purse of teenagers. We concluded with a brief trip to the Marina Piano di Sorrento before heading back to the hotel.

The penultimate day involved a trip to the Naples Archaeological Museum featuring impressive Roman mosaics and a 3D model of Pompeii. We also journeyed to the volcano Solfatara where we had a tour of its various unique features including bubbling mudpools, hot vents and sulphurous fumes. Our final evening concluded with a second visit to the centre of Sorrento, followed by a much-needed final ice cream at the local marina.

We departed for England the following morning with much less hassle than the outward journey, having thoroughly enjoyed our informative and fun-filled trip. Many thanks to Mr Taylor for running the trip, and to Mrs Collier, Miss McQuillin and Mr Grant for accompanying us.

Amy Thomas and Naomi Jennings

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