- 4 years ago
- Wedding: September 2016
We went to Rome with our 2 kids, which requires a lot of planning because of the logistics required to keep everyone happy. Our kids are experienced global travelers but when we travel with them, we err on the side of pre-planned, pre-paid and private because no one appreciates a screaming toddler during their Vatican tour – me included. That being said, I can’t say enough about private tours. We had one for the Vatican, including the Sistene Chapel, a bike tour of Rome which included all the touristy sights/fountains, the Coliseum but I bailed on that to go shopping (hello VAT refund) and a full day car tour of the Amalfi Coast. That way, the tours are all pre-paid, no waiting in lines, at your pace and customized to your interests. My older son is interested in military battles so our Vatican tour guide geared the whole day around highlighting artwork of historical events that he was familiar with, citing back to history. We bailed on part of the scheduled content of the bike tour bc our toddler was obsessed with a few of the sculptures and wanted to eat two servings of gelato. Do your research and book things prior to going. Btw, LOVE the public fountains in Rome where you can fill up your water bottle and yes, they are perfectly safe. I hate disposable plastic bottles of water, used the fountains instead. We stayed at a posh hotel within walking distance from everything, primarily because it had a roof top pool, but LOVED that we could walk everywhere. Public trains are safe though, took them a few times. Rome is surprisingly smaller than we thought, walkable and it is amazing! Rome is still in my top 3 European cities but it is crowded and requires advance planning. Have a blast!
When in Rome, purchase the Rome City Pass. Its so worth it!! You get free admission to certain places, free metro rides (if i remember correctly it lasts for 3 days) as well as the ability to skip the line at certain places. I’m not super religious, but The Vatican was really cool. The best gelato is at Old Bridge right outside the Vatican! Wander around different Piazzas and eat your weight in pizza and pasta! Try every house wine, or vino de la casa you can get your hands on (if you are a wine drinker).
Athens wasn’t my favorite place but I agree with PP’s that have talked about the other islands like Santorini and Mykonos. For part of our honeymoon we are going to spend 6 days in Santorini and I can’t wait to go back! It is unbelievably picturesque and the people and food are amazing!
I second a PP but I would suggest if you can spend like 5 days in Greece (if that is what you were planning on lets say) then stay in Athens for one day/night and then take a ferry to a nearby island (some are like an hour away) and spend time on an island. Athens is gorgeous because of the history but the islands are what you will truly enjoy!!
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