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Italy inaugurates direct Rome-Pompeii train

Pompeii high-speed service runs once a month.

Italy's prime minister Giorgia Meloni on Sunday inaugurated a new direct high-speed train linking Rome and Pompeii with a non-stop rail service for the first time.

Culture minister Gennaro Sangiuliano was also a passenger on the maiden journey of the Frecciarossa train which runs between Roma Termini and Pompeii on the third Sunday of every month.

The direct service departs from Termini at 08.53, arriving in Pompeii at 10.40, with the return journey departing at 18.40 and arriving back in Rome at 20.55.

The journey time from Rome to Pompeii is one hour and 47 minutes, with the return trip taking two hours and 15 minutes.

The new connection, a collaboration between the culture ministry and the Italian state railways, is added to the 50 daily round-trip journeys that already exist between Rome and Pompeii.

Meloni said the new service combined "culture and modernity" and was part of wider efforts to make Italy's cultural heritage "more available" to tourists.

"Up until a few years ago, Pompeii was cited as one of the places where Italy was least successful in giving prestige to its beauty" - Meloni said - "Today it is one of the places where we show that Italy knows how to take care of its extraordinary heritage."

Minister Sangiuliano said the new rail link "is just the beginning and, if it goes well, we will add more services".

Passengers on the train can watch a video about the history of Pompeii, which was buried in volcanic ash and pumice after the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD, and its excavations in recent centuries.

They will also have the option of buying entrance tickets to Pompeii while on board the train, before taking a shuttle bus to the archaeological park on arrival at Pompeii station.

The launch of the direct train service coincided with the opening to the public of the newly-restored House of the Silver Wedding at Pompeii.

Massimo Osanna, general director of state museums, noted that in 2019 the Pompeii archaelogical park attracted "four million visitors but this year we will exceed those figures".

Photo FS News

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