Classic Italy (both) - Archeological Museum in Naples

I need some help!!

UPDATE: First problem solved. I finally got tickets through CoopCulture! :~) There is no strike-through on this forum software, so unless you are interested, you don't need to read the brown text.


We are on the 22 May, Classic Italy, Small Groups tour and I have some questions for previous travelers who visited the National Archeological Museum in Naples on their own.

We arrive in Naples/Sorrento two days early and have arranged for car and driver to take us around Naples and the Pozzuoli suburb. My plan is to visit Herculaneum (Ercolano) first, followed by the Museum, then the Antifeatro Flavio (a colosseum) in Pozzuoli, and other sites in the area as time permits. I have already purchased Herculaneum tickets online. But I am having trouble with tickets for the Museum.

First, the English version of the museum's official website does not seem to be working (like many things there, so I've read), and doesn't seem to sell tickets. Online sources for tickets (CoopCulture (official?), Viator, Expedia, etc.) only seem to provide tickets for certain entry times- I don't know when we will arrive from Herculaneum. Also, CoopCulture says, "This service is an official internet pre-sale, authorized by the concession agreement with the Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities. The ticket for the National Archaeological Museum of Naples is valid only for the day it gets printed." I'm not sure whether they are talking about the "day requested" or truly mean "day printed."

So, has anyone purchased tickets online for National Archeological Museum in Naples and know the real story?


According to online reviews, it seems the descriptions of the museum contents aren't very good and aren't all in English. Also, the quality of the local "guides" who accost you at the museum entrance can be hit or miss, so we had planned to just rent audio guides, but they don't get great reviews either! The company providing our car and driver can also provide a guide for 4 hours for an additional €200. We only plan to spend about 2 hours there, so it doesn't seem worthwhile, although this just might be a case of "bite the bullet."

I wasn't able to find a Rick Steves audio tour for Herculaneum, just Pompeii.

So, who can help with ticket info? Will I be forced to buy them onsite when we get there? What is your opinion of the audio guides?

Final question- the websites say "bags" are not allowed and must be checked at the entrance (free locker)- do they mean all bags? How about a women's purse or the man-purse I use to carry my camera, etc.?

Comments

  • Alan, when we went to the museum, it was part of the Tauck Italy tour we were on, not this tour. While it was interesting to see the artifacts that we saw, specifically the Pmpeii ones, I would say it is not worth your considerable effort to even go there. You have surely seen plenty of Roman/Italian artifacts throughout your life. We have even seen the touring Pompeii exhibit in recent years in our local city along with replicas of preserved human forms and so on. As you have probably read, when we were scheduled to go to the museum it was closed due to a strike and was only opened after considerable effort just for our group by our local guide. I think you might better use of your time seeing another archeological site or spending more time in the others or perhaps a lazy long Italian lunch enjoying the surrounding ambiance.
    Everything's write about the website and so on sounds dodgy.
  • edited April 2016
    British wrote:
    Alan, when we went to the museum, it was part of the Tauck Italy tour we were on, not this tour. While it was interesting to see the artifacts that we saw, specifically the Pompeii ones, I would say it is not worth your considerable effort to even go there. You have surely seen plenty of Roman/Italian artifacts throughout your life. We have even seen the touring Pompeii exhibit in recent years in our local city along with replicas of preserved human forms and so on. As you have probably read, when we were scheduled to go to the museum it was closed due to a strike and was only opened after considerable effort just for our group by our local guide. I think you might better use of your time seeing another archeological site or spending more time in the others or perhaps a lazy long Italian lunch enjoying the surrounding ambiance.
    Everything's write about the website and so on sounds dodgy.

    Thanks. I know the hazards. There is just something about the Italians or more specifically the Neopolitans (is that what they are called, or is it a drink or ice cream?) that can drive you crazy. I saw it on numerous occasions when I was in the Navy and we pulled into Naples for R&R. I think it is their version of mañana or inshallah, only much worse :~).

    In any case, we are going to give it a try. I decided to go with a guide (it's only money), which in addition to enhancing the experience gives us someone local to run interference and interface with the site employees. Years ago I saw how that worked at Pompeii- the guide either knows someone, has a relative there, or gets in the face of the employee, and after an often heated discussion and lots of hand gesturing, usually gets his/her way- access to "closed" rooms, etc. much like your local guide did for your group.
  • Hi Alan: We got back yesterday from Classic Italy -- fabulous tour. We went into Sorrento a few days early, and got a driver to Herculaneum, who arranged for a licensed guide. They were both terrific, and well worth the money. The website is http://www.wiselytravelling.com and Carlo the driver is very responsive to emails ([email protected]).

    If you (or anyone) are interested, we also used a private tour for Capri which was great as well. Email Roberto at [email protected].
  • edited April 2016
    Hi Alan: We got back yesterday from Classic Italy -- fabulous tour. We went into Sorrento a few days early, and got a driver to Herculaneum, who arranged for a licensed guide. They were both terrific, and well worth the money. The website is http://www.wiselytravelling.com and Carlo the driver is very responsive to emails ([email protected]).

    If you (or anyone) are interested, we also used a private tour for Capri which was great as well. Email Roberto at [email protected].

    Thanks.

    We had already arranged for a driver from DriverinItaly and now have a licensed guide provided by them as well for Herculaneum, the National Archaeological Museum, etc. We also have one of their city guides for Capri the next day. I think we are set for Sorrento and Naples. (We have also arranged for one of their drivers to take us from Florence to Pisa later in the tour and are also taking a Segway tour the next day.

    I think we will just play it by ear for our free time in Venice just in case we have run out of steam by then. While there did you go to Murano or Burano? Any recommendations?

    How were the crowds in Italy this time of year? Were they bad in any of cities/at any of the sites?

    We can't wait, only three weeks til we go!

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