Italy is a dream destination for an educational tour operator, primarily because it is a country that offers a vast array of options for school trips and has something in its repertoire for almost every subject. History and archaeology students will be spoilt for choice when it comes to destinations to visit in Italy, but staying either in or close to Naples is highly recommended in order to make this wonderful city, and the fascinating ruins of Pompeii, the central theme to the trip. |
Introduction to Naples
This incredible city is one that is often overlooked by tourists to central Italy. At first glance, it may not be as pretty as the likes of Florence and Rome but it is a city that has been inhabited since the Neolithic period. Ruled by the Greeks, the Romans and many other powerful empires along the way, Naples has a rich and interesting history. Every empire left a legacy and there are some amazing buildings and museums for history students to visit.
Naples National Archaeological Museum
Youngsters interested in archaeology can easily spend a couple of hours at this museum. Stuffed to the brim with Roman and Greek artefacts, a selection of marble statues and a fascinating collection of items excavated from Pompeii and Herculaneum (including some stunning mosaics), the museum is almost always included on a trip put together by an educational tour operator.
San Gennaro Catacombs
A guided tour is recommended when you take a trip to visit this vast underground maze of catacombs. The guide will bring the place to life and have all of the information that students need about the graves and crypts that date back to ancient times.
An experience that offers an insight into the history of Naples it is also one that students will no doubt remember for a long time to come.
Pompeii and Herculaneum
This famous city, which lies just to the south of Naples, was once a highly developed and relatively affluent place. Totally destroyed in 79 AD when neighbouring Mount Vesuvius erupted, Pompeii is today a place of incredible archaeological interest. Much of the city still exists and, despite the devastation that was caused when the place was covered in volcanic ash, many features can be deciphered. The ash preserved lots of remains and on a walk through the site you will see the Amphitheatre, the bakery, the Temple of Apollo and the Temple of Jupiter.
A short train ride from Naples, Pompeii deserves a full day of exploration and your educational tour operator will be able to organise a guided tour to make the experience even more valuable.
A smaller city, also obliterated in the volcanic eruption of 79 AD, Herculaneum is less well known but equally interesting to visit. Parts of this city are better preserved than parts of Pompeii and, indeed, some of its wooden structures are frames are still standing intact. You can also see skeletons of some of the inhabitants that died here.
Booking a trip to this part of Italy for a school trip is best done through a reputable educational tour operator. They will take the stress out of organising the logistical side of the trip, the excursions and the accommodation. This leaves you free to promote the trip, research your destination and get the students excited about what they are going to see.
Many cities are full of history and make wonderful school trip destinations but for the perfect mix of history and archaeology, Naples is a winner.
Author Plate John Gardiner is the Managing Director of The School Travel Company, an educational tour operator specialising in educational trips in destinations all over the world. The company works school trip organisers to design the ideal educational travel experience and provide young people with immersive learning experiences they are sure to remember forever.
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