Rome is a great place for having kids. In the first place, Romans love them, which means you can take them pretty much anywhere and do almost anything as a family without receiving the disapproving looks so common, say, in the UK. Second, as one of Europes greenest cities it has a wealth of parks and gardens for children to play in. Third, as the capital of the ancient Roman empire and seat of the Roman Catholic Church it is steeped in history – much of which is visible in its museums, monuments and archaeological sites – that provides constant stimulation to curious young minds.
It is not all a bed of roses, however. With a population of nearly 2.8 million and a surface area that puts it among the biggest cities in Europe, the Italian capital can be noisy, chaotic and frustrating. Romans may be child-friendly but the city infrastructure is not, and navigating public transport with a pram or a pushchair is a trial. So is accessing public services, including health services during pregnancy, which in Italy is highly medicalised.
But Rome has a large expat community with various support networks centred on its many English-language churches and international schools. And its strategic position at the centre of Italy and in close proximity to the Tyrrhenian coast and Apennine mountains make it easy to get away.
In this section is listed everything we think you should know about Rome for kids, as recommended by our members, from where to shop & eat to play-groups & day-trips.