9. From Rome: Pompeii Ruins and Mt. Vesuvius w/ Lunch & Wine
Start with a pickup from your accommodation in Rome in the morning, and hop inside your private vehicle with a professional English-speaking driver. Relax on the journey south as your driver navigates the roads to Mount Vesuvius. Stop at the highest point accessible by vehicle, and embark on a short 200-meter hike to its crater.
Stop for lunch in a restaurant in a local winery on the slopes of the volcano. Taste some of the wine varieties developed from grapes grown in the volcanic soil. All guests visiting the winery are welcome to stay for an "Italian style" tasting, held on the terrace overlooking the Mediterranean.
After lunch, return to the vehicle and travel to the archeological site of Pompeii. Benefits from pre-reserved entrance tickets and explore this fascinating site with a local expert guide on a 2-hour tour. Learn how the ancient city lay buried beneath pumice stone and ash for millennia after the infamous Mount Vesuvius eruption of 79 AD. Discover a UNESCO World Heritage Site and wander amongst preserved ancient villas, Roman baths, and many more ancient structures.
• Antipasto appetizer with local products such as salami, provolone cheese, casatiello (a savory bread) and bruschetta with heirloom Piennolo tomatoes on bread baked in a wood-burning oven paired with Lacryma Christi del Vesuvio Bianco DOP (100% Caprettone), Rosato (100% Piedirosso) and Rosso (100% Piedirosso).
• Spaghetti made with durum wheat flour and tossed with a sauce made from heirloom Piennolo tomatoes and basil, paired with Lacryma Christi Riserva (80% Piedirosso and 20% Aglianico, aged in French oak barrels for 18 - 24 months). Pastiera Napolitana, a traditional dessert featuring sweetened ricotta, candied fruit, and boiled wheat berries paired with Capafresca Spumante Rosato (100% Aglianico) and Acquavite di Albicocche del Vesuvio, an apricot distillate.