Italy, the land of ice-cream, pizza and spaghetti! Rome, where gladiators fought with lions! Who said this was not a child friendly city? Italians love bambini, and after this trip your children will consider Rome their best holiday ever.
The first obvious stop is the Colosseum. At the entrance is usually a gladiator, kids will love to take photo him. The ruins are perfectly preserved, which makes it easier for them to imagine. They will be fascinated by the tunnels below, where the animals and gladiators waited to enter the arena.
There are two small theme parks around Rome. Il Fantastico Mondo is at about 15km from the centre. Don’t expect big Disneyland-style attractions, but the little ones will like it. If you are travelling with teenagers better go to Aquapiper, a water park with a lot of slides (2 of them almost vertical).
On a rainy day, there are two great options. Explora is Italy’s first children’s museum and is divided in 4 parts: me, society, nature and communication. Everything is adapted to their height, and they are invited to touch and experiment with everything. There is even a mini village with a supermarket, a gas station and a banc where the kids are in charge! The newest attraction in Rome is the Time Elevator, which is a 5D experience. You can choose from 3 different experiences: Rome, An ode to life or Escape from bane manor. A 3D movie, combined with multi-sensorial effects such as wind and water, a moving platform and an impressive surround system. Might be scary for the younger ones, but your teens will be impressed.
Of course, don’t miss out on all the culture Rome has to offer. If you tell them the right story, it can be fun for them too! Give them a coin to make a wish (Anything, whether it’s a Barbie doll or a pony)) at the Trevi fountain, and let them admire the artists and human statues at the Piazza Navona. They will feel like a knight in the Castel Sant’Angelo, and it offers amazing views. Ask you children to point out the things they recognize.
If you’re kids are brave and adventurous, take them to the crypt of the Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccini. It contains the remains of 4000 friars and the walls are decorated with individual skulls and bones, a macabre work of art. They might be clung to your skirt, but once back home they will impress their friends with how fearless they were.
To comfort the nerves a bit, why not spend the rest of the day in the zoo? The Bioparco is one of the oldest zoos in Europe, and is at the same time a botanical garden with more then 1000 trees. There is a pick-nick area, a playground and a little train, the Bioparco Express. The zoo itself is located in the Vila Borghese Park, which is the second largest in Rome. You can rent a bicycle, feed the ducks, or hire a boat to cross the small lake or visit the puppet theatre. Ready to introduce your offspring to the Italian way of life? Don’t forget to buy them a gelato on hot afternoons! And for a good night’s sleep followed by a relaxing morning, rent your own apartments in Rome