Rome with kids(5 Posts)
We are going to Rome in half term (children 5 and 7). Eldest has recently done a Romans topic so very keen to see the sights. It's many years since I last went to Rome so looking for suggestions of the best way to see the Colloseum. I remember long queues so do we just get there early or book a tour?
Book a tour, because then you have access to every part of the colosseum and you get to stand in the middle of it and appreciate the whole structure surrounding you. They will also take you under the colosseum and show you the mechanisms the romans used to lift animal and carriage in the arena.
Book the 3rd level and underground tour- it's worth it! It also includes entry into the Roman Forums and Palatine Hill. If you're going to the Vatican book tickets in advance too. IMO the tour buses are a faff as the Metro is very easy but with children it may be worth looking into using the tour buses. You can't take full bottles of drink into the Colessium but you can take empty ones and fill from the taps inside. I would really recommend going as early as possible if you're planning on doing the Colessium, Forum and Palantine in one day. If you book your tour time in advance, arrive about 45 minutes before hand as you may have to queue to go through security and to pick up your tickets.
Queues are massive at the Vatican so buying advance tickets can speed up the process. I wouldn't say it was necessary to do a full guided tour there though. If you want to visit St Peter's Dome, there will be a queue. We waited over 90 minutes to go up it.
If you can, take a trip to Ostia, about half an hour outside Rome on the train. Really well preserved old port of Rome. It's like a mini Pompeii without the people. A real gem.
If you are going in the summer holidays I'm not sure the children will get much out of the Vatican. We went in October and it was a long, slow shuffle through very hot rooms and corridors before we got to the Sistine chapel. After the brightly painted rooms and corridors the chapel seemed underwhelming and dull by comparison.
We couldn't get anywhere near the church as the queue was 2 hours long (you can't pre-book this as entry is free)
The Colosseum and Palatine Hill were awesome, and we spent ages there. Also the Pantheon, which also has loads of ice cream shops in the vicinity.
Above all, you will do a lot of walking so take very comfortable footwear.
Rome is well known for pickpockets, but as long as you are sensible you will be fine. DD and I never felt threatened at any point, but I was amazed at the number of people who carelessly shoved their iPhones into the back pocket of their jeans.
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