To explore the town of Pompeii you will be using the recently renewed sidewalks and paths made out of smooth concrete. Your attention will be caught by big blocks of basalt emerging from the middle of the road. They were the stepping stones used by pedestrians to cross the road. In Pompeii indeed, differently from other roman towns, there was not a complete sewer system because the city was build on top of a lava platform too hard to be worked. Nowadays it is possible to ride on top of these stepping stones thanks to the ramps pitched properly.
The House – Domus
During our special Accessible Pompeii Tour you will certainly visit one or two ancient Domus (private houses) . This is probably one of the most interesting building of Pompeii. The pumice stones and ashes coming out from the volcano have in fact buried the town keeping nearly intact shining floors, wall mosaics and colourful wall paintings such as the frescoes.
The City Centre – Forum
The city centre was called the Forum, it hosts all the buildings with a public function: Religion (the Temple of Apollo, the Capitolium and the Temple of the Emperor), Trade (the meat and fish market called Macellum, the textiles market headed by a priestess called Eumachia), Administration (the Basilica) and Politics (Comitii). Other facilities in the Forum where exchange offices, public restrooms and a public scale (tabula mensurae) where to compare and weigh farmer’s products. In the Forum you will also see a display of the well-known plaster casts.
The Bath House – Thermae
Close by there were public thermal baths where both men and women (in different sections), poor and wealthy, free and slaves could enjoy daily hygiene. Pompeii had 3 of such complexes in town plus 2 right outside the city walls, all provided with following facilities: a changing room (apoditerium), a tepid room (tepidarium), a hot room (calidarium) and a Gym (Palestra). You can easily visit the Termae Stabiane by using the access ramps in order to explore the area which was open to the female public.
You will notice several places overlooking the road with large vases built in a masonry counter: this is what the Romans called popinae or cauponae, today’s taverns! In fact those terracotta jars where filled up with food and beverages, and many ancient Pompeians used to stop in such places for lunch.
You will certainly recognise some of the bakeries of Pompeii, with their ovens and their millstones: several round carbonized loafs of bread has been found during the excavations are nowadays on exhibit at the Archaeological Museum of Naples together with more carbonized organics such as almonds, pine cones, figs, dates etc…
On our way out you will use the specific elevator made for travellers with special needs. This will also give you the chance to stop at the Antiquarium for watching the video of the Virtual Reconstruction of the Eruption and to buy souvenir at the Book Shop if requested.
By the exit are also available wheel-chair accessible restrooms.