Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli
Don’t miss this stupendous museum. One of the world’s most important archaeological collections has its base in the mass of Ancient Roman treasures, unearthed from the ravaged remains of Pompeii and Herculaneum after the eruption of Vesuvius in 79AD. The ground floor of the massive 17th-century building houses the peerless Farnese collection, mostly Roman copies of Greek statues, including the renowned Bull and evocative Hercules. There’s a large Egyptian section in the basement, with plenty of mummies and sarcophagi, and mosaic flooring on the mezzanine floor, mostly taken from Pompeii. On the same floor is a saucy collection of ancient pornography in the Gabinetto Segreto-no visitors under 11 years of age! The upper floor contains more finds from Pompeii and Herculaneum, arranged around the massive Sala Meridiana, which is dotted with bronzes and gigantic classical statuary. Friezes in further rooms reveal the sophistication and decadence of life in Pompeii. The Romans were masters at producing intensely colored glass and much of that is on show from Room 85 onwards, including the wonderful Vaso Blu, in vivid blue and decorated with white cherubs; its was used as a communal wine glass.