Rome: An Unforgettable Family Destination

Rome, the Eternal City, is a magical place that offers something for every member of the family. From exploring ancient monuments to sampling delicious Italian food and choosing cozy accommodations, Rome is the perfect destination for a family vacation. In this article, I will guide you through a wide variety of activities, dining options and places to stay so you can plan an unforgettable vacation in this historic city.

Activities for the whole family in Rome

We recommend starting your trip in Rome by exploring two of the most emblematic sites of antiquity: the Colosseum and the Roman Forum. These historic sites will fascinate both parents and children. The little ones will be able to imagine life in ancient Rome as they walk through the ruins and arenas of the Colosseum.

While it may seem like museums are boring for kids, the Vatican Museums have a wealth of treasures that can captivate the whole family. The Sistine Chapel, with its breathtaking frescoes by Michelangelo, is a highlight that even the youngest children will find amazing.

Two other must-see places in Rome that you can visit with your children are the Pantheon, an ancient Roman temple, and the Trevi Fountain, the famous lucky fountain, where children can enjoy tossing a coin into the Trevi Fountain and making a wish while admiring the majesty of the fountain. In addition, the Pantheon is a fascinating place with its impressive dome and ancient history.

If you want to explore in a natural environment, you can’t miss Villa Borghese, which is an extensive park in the heart of Rome and offers many activities for families. You can rent bicycles or take a boat ride on the lake, explore the city zoo, Bioparco di Roma, or visit the Galleria Borghese, which houses an impressive art collection. This urban oasis is ideal for children to play and adults to relax. 

Another way to explore Rome while relaxing is with a boat ride on the Tiber River while seeing some of the most famous monuments, such as Castel Sant’Angelo and the Sant’Angelo Bridge.

If you feel like having an explorer’s experience, older children will be fascinated to visit the subway catacombs of Rome, such as the Catacombs of St. Callixtus or the Catacombs of St. Sebastian. These places offer a unique insight into early Christian history.

If you want an educational and playful experience for your children, the Children’s Museum Explora! is an excellent choice. It offers interactive exhibits and hands-on activities that encourage learning through play. Children can explore scientific, historical and cultural concepts in a fun way. This educational experience can also be joined at the Museum of Roman Civilization, where children can enjoy models of ancient Rome and learn about daily life in the city thousands of years ago.

Authentic Gastronomic Delights in Rome

Dining in Rome is an essential part of the sightseeing experience, and enjoying a romantic meal with your partner is an opportunity to savor delicious Italian cuisine.

Local trattorias: Rome is full of charming little trattorias offering authentic Italian food. These places are often cozy and romantic. Try classic dishes such as pasta carbonara, cacio e pepe or amatriciana.

Ristorante Aventino: this restaurant offers a spectacular view of the Orange Gardens and St. Peter’s Basilica. It is a romantic and elegant place to enjoy traditional Italian cuisine.

La Pergola: a high-end dining experience, La Pergola is a three Michelin-starred restaurant located in the Rome Cavalieri Hotel. They offer exquisite dishes and panoramic views of the city.

Giolitti: for dessert or gelato, Giolitti is a historic gelato shop that offers a wide variety of Italian flavors. You can enjoy an ice cream cone while taking a romantic stroll through the city.

Garden of Oranges: if you prefer a romantic picnic, you can buy fresh produce at a local market, such as Campo de’ Fiori, and then head to the Garden of Oranges (Giardino degli Aranci) to enjoy a panoramic view of Rome while sharing a leisurely meal.

Gastronomic Delights of Rome

The city offers a wide variety of dining options that will please all ages, from traditional Italian dishes to fast food and more kid-friendly options. Here are some suggestions of places and dishes that are ideal for families in Rome:

Traditional Pizzerias: Pizza is a classic dish that attracts people of all ages. Children tend to enjoy the simpler options, such as Margherita (tomato, mozzarella and basil), while adults can try pizzas with fresh local ingredients at places like Pizzarium, da Baffetto or Dar Poeta.

Gelaterias: Italian gelato is a delicious dessert that everyone will enjoy. Gelaterias in Rome offer a variety of flavors, from chocolate to fresh seasonal fruits. Let the kids choose their favorite flavors and enjoy a cone or a tub of gelato at places like Gelateria del Teatro, Giolitti or Fatamorgana.

Family Trattorias: These are informal restaurants offering homemade Italian dishes. They are ideal for families, as they usually have varied menus that include pasta, meat and fish options. Children can enjoy pasta with simple sauces such as carbonara or bolognese in places like Da Enzo al 29, La Gensola, Trattoria der Pallaro.

Ristorants with Children’s Menus: Some ristorants in Rome offer menus specially designed for children. These menus usually include simpler options and smaller portions at affordable prices. This is a good option if you have picky children or want to control costs at places like Il Corallo, Osteria da Fortunata, Ristorante Abruzzi.

Food Markets: a fun way to experience local cuisine and buy fresh food to take away. Markets often have stalls selling products such as cured meats, cheeses, fresh bread and fruits. You can put together an impromptu picnic with the products you like the most in places like Campo de’ Fiori Market, Mercato Trionfale, Testaccio Market.

Family Lodging in Rome

The city offers a variety of options ranging from family hotels to vacation apartments. Here are some suggestions for accommodation in Rome that are ideal for families:

Vacation Apartments: are an excellent option for families, as they offer more space and amenities than a standard hotel room.

Family Hotels: These hotels usually provide specific services and amenities for children, such as cribs, extra beds and children’s menus in their restaurants. Some recommendations are Hotel Artemide, Hotel Quirinale or Hotel Santa Maria.

Bed and Breakfast (B&B): they offer a cozy and personalized option for families and some also offer homemade breakfast every morning, which is ideal to start the day. Some recommendations are Gli Artisti B&B or Residenza Ruspoli Bonaparte.

Aparthotels: are a versatile option for families, as they combine the comforts of an apartment with the services of a hotel. You can enjoy the privacy and flexibility of an apartment, but with the option of cleaning and reception services at places like Hotel Raffaello or Aparthotel Adagio Rome Vatican.

Family Resorts: if you are looking for a more luxurious accommodation experience, some resorts outside Rome offer family-friendly facilities and activities, such as swimming pools, kids’ clubs and green spaces for children to play. Some recommendations are Parco dei Principi Grand Hotel & SPA or Aldrovandi Villa Borghese.

Tourist cards for Rome

In Rome, some tourist cards are especially suitable for families, as they offer benefits and discounts that can be beneficial when traveling with children.

The Roma Pass offers free admission to the first two museums or archaeological sites you visit, includes free and unlimited use of public transportation in Rome and is valid for two adults and one child under 10 years of age. Additional children can purchase the Roma Pass Junior.

The Omnia Vatican & Rome Card provides skip-the-line access to the main Vatican attractions and includes a 3-day ticket for the tourist bus. Children under age 6 ride free on Rome’s public transportation and tourist bus and children ages 6 to 9 can get a discounted junior card.

The Rome Tourist Card offers priority access to Vatican attractions, includes a 24 or 48-hour ticket for the tourist bus and some versions of this card include a 24 or 48-hour public transportation ticket for adults. Children under 3 years of age do not pay admission to attractions, but it is important to check the specific conditions of the card.

The JOY Rome Card is designed specifically for families and offers discounts on a variety of family attractions, activities and restaurants in Rome. It includes a 24-hour public transport ticket for adults and children under the age of 10 can use it free of charge.

Tips for Traveling with Children in Rome

  • Traveling with children can be a rewarding experience, but it can also present challenges.
  • Do your research and plan ahead to make sure the activities you choose are age-appropriate for your children. You can even involve them in planning the trip and let them choose some activities or places that interest them.
  • Keep in mind that children can tire quickly, so be sure to schedule breaks and time off.
  • Bring snacks and water with you to keep children fed and hydrated throughout the day and entertainment is also important so bring books, toys or electronic devices to keep children entertained during waits at airports or restaurants.
  • Keep children close by and teach them about street and public transportation safety.

Conclusion about plans for families in Rome

Rome is a magical destination for family travel, where history meets delicious cuisine and authentic Italian culture. With a wide variety of activities for all ages, delicious dining options and cozy accommodations, Rome will leave an indelible impression on the whole family, so get ready to explore the Eternal City together and create memories that will last forever. buon viaggio! (Have a good trip!).

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