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rome with teens

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rome with teens

Hi. I am planning 3 nights in Rome with my daughters ages 12 and 15 in April. I think we have a reasonable itinerary in place. We did want to to do an organized tour of both "Ancient Rome" and the Vatican (on two separate days. Someone recommended Viator tour company. Does anyone else have any experience with them? Also, our hotel is in Piazza Navona. Any recommendations for fun restaurants? Thanks

scarpenter4
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1. Re: rome with teens

one thing

check Gray Line and see if their tours are the same times and days...then check the price

then check to see if you can get an AAA discount

Roma
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2. Re: rome with teens

Your staying in a great part of town.

West of Piazza Navona on via della pace and via del Governo Vecchio you'll find fun good Roman trattoria.

One of our favorites is Da Francesco - this is in Piazza Fico, west of Via della Pace. You will will love it.

Another is Cucina Virginiae, around the corner from Da Francesco.

Have an espresso at caffe della pace. Enjoy Rome!

Le Marche, Italy
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3. Re: rome with teens

I think your daughters would probably enjoy a visit to the Galleria Doria Pamphilj, which is near where you're staying. It's a Renaissance Palazzo, still owned and occupied by descendants of the Doria Pamphilj family, and maintained much as it appeared during the Renaissance. The family's art collection is displayed on the walls the way it was in those days, which is very different from how a modern museum displays art: nearly every inch of wall is covered with paintings. There is an excellent audio tour narrated by a member of the family. It allows you to punch in the number of a painting or other feature that interests you, so that you can hear something about that particular thing. Here is their web site:

http://www.doriapamphilj.it/ukhome.asp

If you go to this page, and click on the names of the various rooms in the palace, you can see photos of them, to get an idea of the splendor of the place:

http://www.doriapamphilj.it/ukpianta.asp

I don't have any experience with Viator or other organized tour. I do know a very good private guide, who is especially good at ancient Rome and at tailoring a tour to your particular interests, but she may be too expensive for you:

http://www.rome-tours.com/

However, with three nights, you will have only two days, and I would hesitate to spend that much time on tours, especially with adolescents. I think they would enjoy the experience more if it were a bit less structured. It's not a bad idea to have a guide for the Roman Forum, which is very poorly marked. Maybe you could get a private guide for one hour in the forum, and then do the rest independently.

Other things that would probably interest young people are: Castel Sant'Angelo, the fortress that once protected the popes during wars. There is a splendid view of Rome from the terrace on the top level, and a snack bar is there also.

Villa Borghese, a vast park with all sorts of fun things to do, including pedal carts to ride around the park. There is also a great view here, from the Pincian Overlook.

The Capitoline Museums have a lot of ancient Roman sculpture, which I think often interests kids more than paintings do, although they also have many paintings. Some of the sculptures are very charming, such as the boy removing a thorn from his foot.

scarpenter4
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4. Re: rome with teens

I told you about Gray Line as an alternative to Viatour. I DO NOT personally recommend either.

A good guide book or two...and you can easily do Rome "self guided" as it seems the majority of tourists do everyday.

We did use Presto Tours for the Vatican as we were worried about lines.... now I realize that the Vatican's own tours would have been fine.

The Presto tour was very good, we found them on this Forum and there are others who are talked about here with similar praise.

Roma
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5. Re: rome with teens

With regrad to the Vatican, which you mentioned interests you, if you plan to go to both the Vatican Museum and the St. Peter's Basilica then it is my advice to enter the Museum first.

This way, once you wait in line and are inside, you may enter St. Peter's Basilica directly after the museum from the Sistine Chapel, without going through another line.

If you go to St. Peter's Basilica first then you have to exit, walk aroud the Vatican wall - West side - and wait in line again.

The museum is full of treasure going back to ancient Greek, Egyptian, Roman, and Etruscan civilizations. Then of course there is Rapahel's masterpieces and Michelangelo's too.

Inside the Basilica is where you will find the Pieta by Michelangelo and a number of sculptures and bas relief by Bernini.

The line may look long, but it will take no longer than 20 minutes to get inside. Ince inside you can rent audio guide to guide you through.

I would do the tour or audio of the Forum (Ancient Rome) because it is hard to discern what are all the ruins about. Be sure to go up to the Palantine Hill and enter the museum - it's full of sculpture.

For some cool fashions check the north and west of Piazza Navona for Via dei coronari - I think the girls will lvoe it. Also, make plenty of time to walk around Via dei Condotti and the Spanish Steps - I think the girls will love the made in Italy brands that dot these fashionable streets.

Enjoy.

Rome, Italy
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6. Re: rome with teens

Personally, I don't think you need a private tour. You lose flexibility, like passing what the girls deem uninteresting and deviating from a plan when they wish. If you really wanted to do one tour, I'd try using context roma. They are excellent and only take small groups so you won't feel like cattle.

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7. Re: rome with teens

wow! thank you so much everyone. Great tips on the train and some interesting ideas on different activities for my girls.

we are so excited. from rome, we are spending 2 nights in florence and 3 nights in sorrento. Any tips, ideas would be so appreciated. We do plan to take train from florence to naples and then visit pompeii before settling into sorrento. Heard positano is a great place to go. we were thinking of a hydrofoil to capri-does this sound right????

Thanks!!

Orlando, Florida
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8. Re: rome with teens

The problem with visiting Italy is that there are so many "should not miss" destinations...how do you decide wehere to go and what to visit?? You do not think your girls would like Venice or Pisa.

I'm traveling with my 17 year old in April also...not sure what would be of interest. We will spend 3 nights in Barcelona first, but noiw I'm wondering if we should spend our entire 10 days in Italy!! Too late now, as i akready have the plan tickets from Barcelona to Rome. I printed this thread because I feel the posts are of interest.

Best of luck, and have fun:-)

Rome, Italy
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9. Re: rome with teens

Sherbabe44, your pompeii idea is great; kids love it, but it's better to skip a tour guide there and just go to the kiosk and rent audio guides. They give you a map with numbers so you can map out what you really want to see (it's a huge city, so you need a plan before you start moving) and then make a beeline for those sites. In my opinion, Positano, while gorgeous, is very boring for kids. There's nothing to do for them. The pools are usually unheated, the beach is not clean enough for swimming (oil from boats kind of ruins it). Taking the hydrofoil from Sorrento to Capri pleases kids greatly and the island is interesting as well as pretty. Do go up to AnnaCapri (the higher part of the island) and take the chair lift to the cafe at the top; see the villa and hike around.

As an alternative: smaller city in ruins, skip Pompeii and opt for nearby Herculaneum. It's much more manageable, has gorgeous frescoes remaining and is a bit more in tact since most the city was covered under with mud from the Vesuvio eruption, allowing the more damaging lava to flow right over it into the sea.

St Paul, MN
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10. Re: rome with teens

Sherbabe44, I travel with my 20 something all the time (since she was 14). This picture was taken in 2005 when she was 19.

www.slowphotos.com/photo/showphoto.php…

We both like a lot of Ancient Rome stuff and that is probably no9t typical for teenagers,

She loved shopping and exploring in Trastevere. All kinds of great little shops, bakeries, and restaurants.

Both she and my younger daughter (not an ancient Romophile) really like Ostia which is only 30 min fronm Rome.

www.slowphotos.com/photo/showphoto.php…

www.slowphotos.com/photo/showphoto.php…

If you are going to the Bay of Naples, I have been there more than once with my daughter. I went to Capri for 8 days and ischia for 3 days with my daughter in May 2008. My daughter loved Capri www.slowphotos.com/photo/showgallery.php…

especially this boat tour of the island

Shopping in Capri was pricey. Ischia merchandise in more that one case was half the price that it was on Capri

Ischia has thermal parks/spas that are reasonable in price. the volcano under the island heats the water for free. We went on a day trip to Ischia in 2007 and my daughter enjoyed the spa there.http://www.slowphotos.com/photo/showphoto.php?photo=35654&cat=4094

www.slowphotos.com/photo/showphoto.php…