Visiting the Crater on Mount Vesuvius

Visiting the Crater on Mount Vesuvius
Mount Vesuvius Tickets

Mount Vesuvius is one of only two active volcanos in Continental Europe and stands about 1281 meters tall, with a symmetrical central cone and steep wooden slopes. The whole of the Mount Vesuvius National Park is both beautiful and productive, dotted with small farms and wineries planted with heirloom varietals boasting a unique terroir. Visiting the crater is a must, and tourists from across the globe climb the path each year to peer into its depths.

The curious have been climbing the slopes of Mount Vesuvius since the 1600s, as the crater was considered one of the more "exotic" stops on the Grand Tour, attracting tourists from northern Europe who had never seen a volcano.
Between the 18th and 19th centuries, the ruins of Pompeii stop along the were discovered by chance, and a trip to Pompeii-Vesuvius became a cultural attraction, as well. Many travellers who were drawn to the unearthed city also wanted to see the volcano that had destroyed it, and excursions up the mountainside were a huge draw.
From the 18th century to today, hiking up Mount Vesuvius is one of the most popular activities in the area; the Volcanological Observatory, founded in 1841, and the official Mountain Guide Association, founded in 1855, have expert guides able to accompany tourists up the final stretch of the mountain trail.

Still today, the most popular route among visitors is the trail up the highest reaches of the cone to the rim of the crater, a stretch that is not particularly difficult, can be undertaken by anyone, and does not require hiking experience.
The trail is about 4 km up and back, with a change in altitude of about 140 meters and an average slope of 14%; the trail reaches 1,170 meters above sea level.

There are buses and shuttles that climb the lower slope of Mount Vesuvius, stopping at the ticket office at 1,050 meters above sea level. The trail begins here, offering views of the Vesuvius park overlooking the Tirone Reserve, the Bay of Naples, and the Campanian Plain. About halfway up the trail you can begin to see Punta Nasone and, on the opposite side, Cognoli di Ottaviano towering over the Valle dell’Inferno. Continue along the broom-lined route to the short climb under maritime pines and birch trees to the Forest Service Post. Pass this to the crater rim with its breathtaking view over the entire Bay of Naples, Pompeii ruins, and Apennine mountains of Molise and Abruzzo.

more

Getting to Mount Vesuvius

You can reach the Mount Vesuvius National Park by car or with one of the bus services from Pompeii or Herculaneum.
If you are arriving by car, take the A3 Napoli-Salerno highway to the Torre del Greco or Herculaneum exit, and follow the signs for Vesuvio. At 800 meters above sea level, there is an unstaffed parking area that costs EUR 5 for all day. Shuttles to the ticket office depart from here, and cost EUR 2 round trip (free for children). We suggest taking the shuttle as it is a tough climb from the parking area to the ticket office, and it's best to save your energy for the trail!
By public transport, you can take the bus or shuttle from the Circumvesuviana Pompei - Villa dei Misteri stop or the Circumvesuviana Ercolano Scavi stop; buses and shuttles cost about EUR 22 round trip (entrance to the park included) and take you directly to the ticket office that is about 200 meters below the trail head for the crater. There are also EAV bus routes between the Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius every 50 minutes.

Visiting the Crater on Mount Vesuvius - Opening & Hours
  • January, February, November, December - daily from 9am to 3pm
  • March and October - daily from 9am to 4pm
  • April, May, June, September - daily from 9am to 5pm
  • July and August - daily from 9am to 6pm

Barring inclement weather or unforeseen circumstances, the trail to the crater is open all year round, including Sundays and holidays.

Visiting the Crater on Mount Vesuvius - Ticket price
  • EUR 10: adults
  • EUR 8: students
  • Free: children shorter than 120 centimeters; disabled and companion
Mount Vesuvius Tickets

Getting to Pompeii and Herculaneum

Recommended Experiences and Tours

Book online to hold your spot or request a custom estimate. More than 24.000+ experiences and tours booked online.

Semi-private tour of Pompeii & Mt. Vesuvius from Naples
Bestseller Shared

Departure from Naples

Authorized guides!
Lunch included
Pick-up and drop off in Naples

Bus Pompeii & Mt. Vesuvius from Naples

€ 85 per guest

Duration 8 hours

Free cancellation

(378 Reviews)
Skip-the-line Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius Guided Tour
Bestseller Shared

Departure from Naples, Positano, Sorrento

Visit Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius with an English-speaking guide
Skip-the-line entrance tickets included
See two A-list sights in one day via air-conditioned minibus

Pompei and Vesuvius from Naples and other options...

€ 109 per guest

Duration 8 hours 8 hours

Free cancellation

(743 Reviews)

Departure from Amalfi, Naples, Positano, Sorrento, Maiori, Minori, Praiano

A private tour of Pompeii, Herculaneum, and Mt. Vesuvius
Get dropped off at the Vesuvius trail head
Transportation by luxury vehicle

Private Car or Minivan

From € 400 Per vehicle | Max 8 passengers

Duration 8 hours

(1646 Reviews)
Pompeii & Vesuvius Group Bus Tour from the Amalfi Coast
Bestseller Shared

Departure from Amalfi, Positano, Maiori, Minori, Praiano

Entrance tickets included to skip the line
Expert guide who speaks English
Transportation on board an air-conditioned coach

Coach

€ 115 per guest

Duration 8 hours

Free cancellation

Mt. Vesuvius Tour with Wine Tasting - From Pompeii
Bestseller Shared

Departure from Pompeii

Convenient direct trasfers
Tasting and light lunch included
Guided excursion to Mt. Vesuvius

Tour

€ 55 per guest

Duration 3 hours

Free cancellation

(2427 Reviews)

Departure from Naples

Private transportation from Naples
Visit the crater atop Mt. Vesuvius
Stop at both Herculaneum and Pompeii

Tour

From € 300 Per group | Max 18 passengers

Duration 8 hours

Free cancellation

(2427 Reviews)
Pompeii and Mt. Vesuvius Tour with Wine Tasting
Bestseller

Departure from Naples

Wine tasting
Visit the crater atop Mt. Vesuvius
Skip-the-line at Pompeii

Tour

€ 85 per guest

Duration 7 hours

Free cancellation

(2427 Reviews)

Departure from Naples, Positano, Sorrento, Port of Naples

A tour by private, air-conditioned car departing from Sorrento, Positano, or Naples with an experienced, English-speaking driver.

Luxury Mercedes Vehicle

From € 416 EUR 40/hour for extra time

Duration 8 hours

Free cancellation

(242 Reviews)

Departure from Naples, Positano, Sorrento

Visit the ruins of Pompeii with a guide
Driving on the top of Vesuvius
Relax over lunch and a wine tasting
Professional driver for stress-free transportation

Mercedes E or V class

From € 520 Per vehicle | Max 8 passengers

Duration 8 hours

(379 Reviews)

Experience and tour

Tour the vineyards and winery
Lunch featuring traditional recipes
Wine tasting during your meal

Cooking lesson

€ 110 per guest

Duration 4 hours

Free cancellation

(965 Reviews)

Departure from Naples, Sorrento, Salerno

Skip the hassle of public transportation
Free time at both Pompeii and Herculaneum
Views from Mount Vesuvius

Mercedes E or V class

From € 390 € 420 Per vehicle |Max 20 passengers

Duration 8 hours

(379 Reviews)

Departure from Naples, Sorrento

Hotel pickup and drop-off
Guided walking tours of UNESCO-listed Pompeii and Herculaneum
Spectacular views from the top of Mt Vesuvius
Comfortable transport from Naples or Sorrento by private vehicle
Private tour means you can explore at your own pace

Luxury car

From € 400 Per vehicle | Max 8 passengers

Duration 8 hours

Free cancellation