Our journey takes us along the coast road through Castellammare di Stabia and out along the motorway to Herculaneum. Herculaneum was destroyed along with Pompei in 79 A.D., and was rediscovered in 1709. It was a residential town without Pompeii’s commercial importance, surrounded by the villas of wealthy Romans. When the catastrophe of 79 A.D. occurred Herculaneum was submerged under a torrent of mud and lava that hardened into a soft tufa (a kind of course rock) that preserved many of the wooden parts of houses and household objects which can be seen today. A large portion of old Herculaneum is still buried under the modern town and even today excavations are going on to discover what treasures lie buried under the rock.