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Advice re kids please.

Dublin
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Advice re kids please.

Hi, we are planning a.trip in late February for 3 nights.Trying to decide wether to bring our two kids, both girls ages 7 and 5.We have never been to Rome before so are looking for recommendations on where to stay, apartment or hotel, and generally any tips that you good folk would suggest.

Are we mad to bring the kids at this time or should we try organise a babysitter and just go ourselves?

Many thanks for any replies.

Roma
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1. Re: Advice re kids please.

Mad? Why would you be mad to bring them? They could get mad with you if you leave them home. I think you would miss the opportunity to let them make a beautiful experience.

Dublin
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2. Re: Advice re kids please.

Ah Aristofane, but would the wife and I have such a beautiful experience?!

The kids are generally excellent travellers I just wonder if for our first ever visit we should go just ourselves to enjoy all that Rome has to offer.

Having said that I have been researching apartments in the Piazza Navona and Spanish Steps areas.

Any advice on things to do with the kids?

Dublin
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3. Re: Advice re kids please.

Ah Aristofane, but would the wife and I have such a beautiful experience?!

The kids are generally excellent travellers I just wonder if for our first ever visit we should go just ourselves to enjoy all that Rome has to offer.

Having said that I have been researching apartments in the Piazza Navona and Spanish Steps areas.

Any advice on things to do with the kids?

Norwich, United...
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4. Re: Advice re kids please.

You'll find that one of the city's Destination Experts has written a whole book on the topic.... have a look at the list on the right - it's not hard to spot which one!

Otherwise, from the Top Questions list there...

tripadvisor.co.uk/GoListDetail-i13905-Top_10…

Sunday on the Janiculum, with the puppets and mid-day gun...

http://www.pbase.com/isolaverde/rome_roma

And there are some other ideas in the "Guest in Rome" magazine... to download a copy in PDF format, start here - and click on the picture of its cover, over to the right of the screen:

http://www.unospitearoma.it

Peter

Peter

Dordrecht, The...
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5. Re: Advice re kids please.

Whether bringing the kids is a mad idea depends entirely on what sort of kids they are. If they can't go a minute without a pool, Rome probably isn't the right destination. On the other hand, there is plenty of ice cream to enjoy. Read up on possible sights to visit and decide whether your kids would enjoy them.

I suspect they'd be fine if you include some kid focussed activities along with the ruins and musea.

U.S. expats
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6. Re: Advice re kids please.

As above, I think it greatly depends on two things: what kind of kids they are, and what kind of vacation you want.

If you really want to spend a lot of time in museums, like the Vatican museum, and ruins like the Roman forum, or do lots of strenuous walking, perhaps your kids won't benefit from this trip.

But there are so many wonders in Rome that a kid would enjoy--many of them free--that I doubt you would have to resort to indoor pools or children's entertainment.

Kids of all ages should enjoy the Pantheon, Piazza Navona, Gelato, the Colosseum, the Trevi Fountain, Spanish Steps, Piazza Popolo, Pincio (although February would not be the ideal time for that.), and the Bocca Verita. There is also a hands on museum about Leonardo da Vinci's inventions near Piazza Popolo.

I am not sure I would take kids that age to the Vatican museum, but would wait til they were older.

Get the DK Eyewitness Travel Rome guidebook and have your little ones pick out some sites they want to see. Everyone benefits when the whole family is invested in the itinerary.

Roma
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7. Re: Advice re kids please.

For one thing, in three days you just can't see "all that Rome has to offer" but have anyway to make a selection; so, I agree that sites like the museums (especially the Vatican Museums) or the Forum may not be suitable. But in such cases, personally, I'd say at first: shall we go (all) or not?; then, what can we plan? of course you're likely to have to look for compromises: you'll have to adapt yourself some way and the kids will have to adapt themselves too (travelling with kids doesn't mean focusing all the travel on them, nor a fortiori being their slave), but I think you could regret to have missed a travel all together. Anyway, I think that letting yourselves free to spend three days wandering aimlessly in Rome with the kids would be more funny and satisfactory for you adults too than visiting museums in perfect calmness while they are at home in front of a videogame.

Dublin
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8. Re: Advice re kids please.

A lot of sensible advice there guys, thank you all.I take all your points on board.We had the kids on a half day tour of Ephesus in October and they enjoyed it.As said they are very good travellers.Apart from main family summer holidays we usually do a few long weekends away each year.Some with.the kids others without.I know they would like Rome, I was just trying to weigh up wether this trip would be less or more appropriate for them than any potential later ones we have yet to.decide upon.We took them to Barcelona in spring 2010 but it rained incessantly putting a downer on things.No one can predict the weather of course.

So they are coming with us!

Thanks again.

Le Marche, Italy
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9. Re: Advice re kids please.

We've been taking my granddaughter to Rome every year since she was three. She's always loved the city, and says she wants to live there when she grows up. (She's now six.) We take it easy on the museums and churches, but she enjoyed the Palatine Hill very much even when she was three years old.

We haven't taken her to the Vatican Museums yet; I wouldn't do that until she's around ten, and depending on whether she's really interested in art at that age. At this age, she likes to hear the stories from Greek mythology or the Bible that are illustrated in the paintings and sculptures we see. (We sometimes have to wrack our brains to remember who somebody like Holofernes was.) We also buy her some post cards in the gift shop and challenge her to find these works.

Museums that have been big hits are the Villa Farnesina, the Corsini Gallery, and the Barberini Gallery. (The last two are free to EU citizens under the age of 18, and very inexpensive even for adults; the Barberini Gallery is one of Rome's best museums, a real bargain gem.) She also likes churches if not overdone. She loved St. Peter's Basilica, for instance. She *loves* fountains. This year, she had her own camera and took lots of photos.

We haven't yet taken her to the Borghese Gallery, the Doria Pamphilj Gallery, or the Capitoline Museums. All of these would probably interest her, but they're more expensive, and when you've paid for four admissions, it's really annoying if the kid wants to leave in five minutes. With the less expensive museums, that's not a problem.

The Villa Borghese gardens are great for kids. There's a zoo there (which I haven't seen, but another child we know was there and liked it.) There is also a lake, some small carnival-type rides, a puppet theatre, and bicycles to rent. The four-person bicycle carts are great, although the kids won't contribute much to the horsepower.

On the Janiculum Hill, there are pony rides (at least on weekends) and another little amusement park area. There are also great views over the city.

The Leonardo da Vinci museum should be great for kids that age. My husband and I, both big kids, enjoyed it a lot. There are lots of hands-on models of his inventions.

Brisbane
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10. Re: Advice re kids please.

Your call guys... we has two months in Europe this year with our kids (9 & 11).

There were certainly times when we wished we just there alone. Say no more.

But overall the trip means so much to us as a family that I wouldn't do it differently if we could do it all over again.

Stay in the Centre - we were near the Spanish Steps and this is a great area for accessing anything in Rome - either by foot or via the metro......