Visit Pompeii during Trips to Rome

Any tour to Italy in search of art and culture must take in the unforgettable and ancient ruins of Pompeii, only a few hours from Italy’s capital city Rome. Follow in the footsteps of the British gentility on Grand Tour with a trip to the Gulf of Naples where you can find a culture that was captured forever in the towns of Pompeii and Herculaneum by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in AD79.

Pompeii, once a popular tourist destination for the ancient Romans, is now one of the most popular tourist sites in Italy and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. When Mount Vesuvius erupted in AD79, devastating the towns of Pompeii and Herculaneum, these ancient cities were buried, preserved and lost under thick layers of ash. This natural event that devastated the towns of Pompeii and Herculaneum now offer tourists the opportunity to see how people lived, and died, two thousand years ago.

Pompeii is now an outdoor museum and an excavation site that provides an exciting archaeological journey into Roman life in the 1st century. The Roman settlement, once lost under almost 60 feet of ash and pumice, was rediscovered in 1748. Since then numerous excavations have unearthed many rare discoveries including well-preserved frescoes showing what everyday life was like for its doomed inhabitants.

Even if you're not interested in history the Pompeii site is a fascinating find. Providing a time capsule of Roman life and architecture, the excavated town includes cobbles streets, grand houses, villas, baths and a brothel. The baths contain stuccoed vaults with preserved images of nymphs and cupids while the Forum shows where the civic, commercial, political and religious heart of the town was located.

From the ruling class down to slaves, no one in the city was spared after Vesuvius erupted. As ash and soot covered the city, people and animals were frozen in time. Giuseppe Fiorelli, the director of one of Pompeii’s many excavations instructed workers to pour liquid plaster into cavities left in the ashes by decomposed bodies. These plaster casts show incredible detail of the people of Pompeii in their last moments.

If you wish to visit Pompeii, then it often proves a good idea to take one of the many tours offered once you arrive from your flights to Rome. From Rome’s Leonardo Da Vinci (Fiumicino) airport, take either a taxi or the train to Rome’s Termini Station and then the Eurostar to Naples.

The Circumvesuviana is one of Naples’ suburban rail services which runs around the base of Mount Vesuvius and connects its nearby cities. The ancient site of Pompeii is just 100 metres from the Pompei Scavi train which can be found half-way along the Circumvesuviana line.

The information contained within this article is the opinion of the author and is intended purely for information and interest purposes only. It should not be used to make any decisions or take any actions. Any links are included for information purposes only.

Pompeii Shuttle

It's fascinating to think that chariots were once driven along these ancient streets of Pompeii.Mt. Vesuvius looms in the background of Pompeii - the ancient city it destroyed.An ancient fountain in the garden of a wealthy citizen during Pompeii's prosperous years.This excavated Pompeii street hints of an ancient society once buzzing with activity and life.The ancient garden/patio area of a wealthy Pompeii citizen. Note the beautiful frescos on the walls.Our tour guide explained that this was a first-century  take-out restaurant!Ruins at Pompeii, which was buried by volcanic ash in 79 AD and rediscovered in 1748.Pompeii ShuttleThis was once a busy and prosperous bakery in ancient PompeiiPompeii Shuttle

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10 tips for selecting the perfect Costa Rica vacation rental

Planning a Tropical vacation full of lush jungles, secluded beaches, and friendly people but not too expensive? Costa Rica is the place to go! But where do you stay, a resort or a private villa? Do you want long lines, crowded pools, kids running up and down the corridors? I think not.

Selecting the best Costa Rica vacation rental can be the difference between a great vacation and one where you feel like you are ‘doing without’.

Many vacationers consider the Costa Rica vacation rental as ‘just somewhere to stay’ since most of your time will be spent in or on the water, or enjoying local attractions. Don’t make that mistake. There is no reason to settle for less when, with a little planning, you can find a great Costa Rica vacation rental that you’ll enjoy as much or more than the other parts of your vacation.

Remember, your vacation home is where you’ll be sleeping, waking up, having many of your meals, and resting.

If it rains or is unseasonably hot outside, you may end up stretched out reading a book to while away the day or wanting to watch one of your favorite movies on the DVD – assuming there is a comfortable sofa. And when you meet new friends, you’ll want someplace nice for entertaining. Shouldn’t your vacation rental be a pleasant get-away with the amenities that make vacations a real treat? “A home away from home”

Here are 10 tips for selecting the perfect Costa Rica vacation rental:

1. The single most important factor is whether or not you can “see” actual recent photos of the interior and exterior of the vacation rental. It’s one thing to read a great description – and some of them are quite ‘complimentary’ (sometimes overly so) - but you need to see what you are getting.

With the Internet, a website is the quickest most convenient way for you to get information on prospective Costa Rica vacation rentals. If there are no pictures, you’ll know right away to keep looking. Brochures, books and guides are nice, but may have out-dated information.

2. List the amenities that are important to you, the ones without which you will feel incomplete. Next, jot down those that are nice to have, but not deal-breakers if not available.

With these lists as a guide, you’ll be able to quickly eliminate those rentals that won’t meet your needs. Your list might include proximity to the water, the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, type kitchen (full versus fridge and microwave), outdoor amenities such as decks and BBQ grills, ocean views, private pools, outdoor eating areas, tennis courts and other items important to you.

On your secondary list, you might have things like a hammock for lazing about, or pool waterfall for the relaxing sounds. Exterior stereo speakers, to enjoy your favorite music around the pool. Ice makers to mix your favorite drinks, especially in the heat of the day.

3. List the activities that you want to be able to enjoy while on vacation. A morning activity like scuba diving, snorkeling or canopy tour then coming back to the villa to relax may be a high priority for you.

You also need to consider how close the vacation rental is to the airport. It is very important to know how far the rental is from your arrival airport. Some rentals can take a half a day’s drive and after your flight even an hour’s drive can seem an eternity. Your travel time back to the airport at departure can also frustrate your entire vacation. Enjoying your last morning of your vacation by a private pool instead of traveling for hours to the airport can be very important to you. For Costa Rica vacation rentals that are only 20 minutes from the Liberia International airport visit This will help you in selecting a general location.

You also need to consider how close you want your vacation rental to be to the attractions.

Some people feel that a great vacation is being able to walk or bicycle everywhere. Others don’t mind a short drive, and still others think nothing of getting on a freeway to enjoy attractions.

If you prefer a vacation without the hassles of traffic, parking problems, crowds and long lines, select a villa located in the quaint waterfront town of Playa Panama, Costa Rica. Visit to learn more.

4. Identify your first, second and third choice of dates for renting the villa.
With several dates, you’ll save time when making arrangements.

If you find a villa that you really want and you have some flexibility in scheduling, having alternate dates ready allows you to book right then, saving yourself the time and hassle of having to re-check everyone’s schedule and call back – and risking losing those dates in the interim.

5. Call the telephone numbers for the vacation rentals that seem to meet your needs and speak directly with either the owners or the person who is handling the property.

Be prepared with a list of questions. This allows you to compare apples to apples, and keeps you from forgetting something important during the conversation.

It also gives you a feel for the person who will be your contact should you rent the villa and then encounter a problem. If you don’t get a warm, friendly welcome to your inquiries, don’t expect anything different when you have a problem.

6. Ask what amenities are included.
You may learn of something that’s not on your list but is perfect for your plans.

Does the rental have maid service? Last thing you want to do is make the beds or clean the dishes, even if there is a dishwasher.

Does the rental have a washer and dryer? If so, you will not have to take as many cloths with you. Will the maid wash your cloths before your departure? Coming home with a suitcase full of clean cloths is certainly a benefit.

Other things to consider: Is there a welcome basket? Will the owner have essential items in the refrigerator for you, before your arrival? Can you make arrangements for tours? Are there plates, utensils, pots, pans and other essentials for eating and meal preparation – or will you have to bring your own?

Does the rental have air condition or do you have to depend on the winds to comfort you?

7. Inquire about restaurants, events and activities and other forms of local entertainment that are close by. Here’s where your list of preferred activities comes in handy. You should be able to find links to local attractions, calendars and restaurants on the website of your Costa Rica vacation rental.

8. Are the owners local or do they have a management team helping 24/7?
Owners are a wealth of information about the area and can give you tips on great out-of-the-way places that aren’t in the guidebooks. They also care about your enjoyment and comfort while at their villa.

This can make a huge difference; especially should something need immediate attention in the villa. There’s nothing worse than calling the rental company about a stopped-up toilet and getting somebody’s bored teenager who’s manning the phones for the summer.

9. How long has the owner been renting vacation rentals?
If the owner has worked with rental properties, they know what tenants expect and how to get things done.

If this is a new venture, beware. The owner may be in it for “fun” and have no idea how to prepare the villa so that you can have a great vacation.

10. And last, when you look at the pictures, can you see yourself having a great time there?

If the pictures make you want to go right now, and the answers to the questions above meet your satisfaction, you’ve found yourself a great Costa Rica vacation rental!

Ocotal Costa RicaOcotal Beach


Playa Hermosa GuanacastePlaya Hermosa Guanacaste Costa Rica

Playa Hermosa

Tamarindo SurfingTamarindo Beach

Tamarindo Beach

Flamingo Beach

Flamingo Beach Costa Rica

 Playa Flamingo

Avellanas Beach Costa Rica

Avellanas Beach

Playa Avellanas

Playa Grande GuanacastePlaya Grande Panoramic View

Playa Grande

Conchal Beach

Ocotal Beach

Playa Conchal

Rincon de la Vieja Costa Rica

Rincon de la Vieja Waterfall

Rincon de La Vieja

Arenal VolcanoLa Fortuna Waterfall

Arenal Volcano

Monteverde Sunset

Monteverde Hanging Bridges


Destination Great Barrier Reef The Coral Reef Heaven

A 70 km drive from north of Cairns is Port Douglas. Port Douglas has a relaxed yet a sophisticated village charm to it. There are many tourists attractions such as, the famous 4 Mile Beach, golf courses, 5 star resorts and restaurants. One can enjoy a leisurely walk on the beach, enjoy the sunset, explore the rainforest or take a vessel or a helicopter ride to the Great Barrier Reef.
Great Barrier Reef, the coral reef heaven is the main attraction for tourists in Port Douglas. There are many activities for Great Barrier Reef Port Douglas tourists to explore, such as snorkelling, skydiving, bird watching, rafting and sailing.
The best way to take reef tours from Port Douglas is taking a day trip or even an extended overnight trip with choices of vessels, small high speed luxury catamarans, mid size sailing to large catamarans that have their own platforms on the outer reef. These Port Douglas great barrier reef tours cater to all kinds of water sports like scuba diving, snorkelling, shaolin sailing, fishing, jet skiing or just sitting back on a yacht and sailing the tropical sapphire waters and enjoying the natural beauty.
For those who want to capture the beauty of the coral heaven with the bid eye view, Great Barrier Reef tour from Port Douglas also provide helicopter air tours. Take home the breathtaking experience of the colourful reefs, which is the only natural single structure made by living organisms, and is visible from outer space.

If you want to remain dry, you can take assortments of land adventures being offered for the World Heritage Daintree and Tribulation rainforests, and the many islands. Port Douglas is an old feel town but it provides many opportunities to explore especially with some of the most exciting Port Douglas Great Barrier Reef Tours.
More About Great Barrier Reef:
The Great Barrier Reef stretches over 3000km (1800 miles) almost parallel to the Queensland coast, near the coastal town of Bundaberg, up past the tip of Cape York. The reef's distance from the coastline ranges from 15 kilometres to 150 kilometres and 65 kilometres wide.
The tropical water is rich with variety of sea turtles, fish, whales, dolphins, sea snakes and the beautiful corals. The reef is a great tourist attraction providing many activities like scuba diving, snorkelling, sky diving, water sports and bird watching.
Great Barrier Reef Location and Regions:
Northern Great Barrier Reef: Spanning most of the east coast of Queensland, The Northern Great Barrier Reef consists mainly of two cities Cape York Peninsula and Cairns.
Central Great Barrier Reef Region: Central Great Barrier Reef consists mainly of Townsville coast and Whitsunday Islands. One of the most fascinating spots to visit while in Townsville is the Reef HQ which has the only coral reef under human administration, where you can get to safely feel and see the reefs.
Southern Great Barrier Reef: Capricorn Coast, Gladstone Port and Fraser Island make up the Southern part of the Great Barrier Reef. Lying 40 kilometres from Rockhampton, Capricorn coast is a shoreline based region in Central Queensland ranging from Keppel Islands in the South to Bayfield and Shoal water Bay in the north.
More details can be obtained from the Great Barrier Reef map that will also help you to determine the easiest travel routes to this tourist hotspot!

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