One of the best parts of summer for kids is the sense of freedom that comes with it. With no school bell to worry about, families get about 10 weeks to set their own schedule. For many families that means traveling and camps. Omni Hotels is out to make the two synonymous. I spent a weekend with my girls at the Omni San Francisco Hotel, and when Sunday rolled around, none of us wanted to go home.
Located in San Francisco’s Financial District, the Omni is a magnet for business travelers, but it was clear from the moment we arrived, they enjoy having kids as guests.
On my family’s recent trip to Paris, I sometimes felt overwhelmed with the staggering amount of amazing architecture and history at every turn. I never tired of looking at it but I did tire of not knowing the stories behind the buildings, statues and paintings. This is where a great tour makes all the difference.
Ciao Bambino has covered a variety of private family tours, including the Paris Muse Louvre tour which receives rave reviews from our readers. I have always wondered if the private guided tours are really worth it with kids.
Over the Easter break we went to Florence and met up with Monica and Elena of Context Travel who took us on their “symbols and legends” walk. It’s a tour for families where you walk around and learn about interesting stuff.
We started at the Palazzo Vecchio in Piazza della Signoria where Monica gave us pictures of different symbols that are hidden all over the city. The Palazzo Vecchio was a government building, made over 700 years ago. It looks like a castle and it was built to show how important Florence was in the world.
Families are always looking for ways to engage their kids while sightseeing in Europe. Sometimes the attraction is so compelling that kids are naturally interested, while at other times they could care less and do the child’s equivalent of thinking about their “to do” list – they tune out completely.
Interestingly, sometimes the least expected things excite them. While in London last spring, my then 8-year-old Devon could care less about viewing the cities’ most iconic landmarks …
Since we’ve been highlighting multiple ways to explore DC through Dana’s posts about Touring the White House, Choosing Kid-Friendly DC Tours, and DC Kid-Friendly Museums (to name a few) — I thought I’d jump on the bandwagon.
Last spring, I tried to hunt down some new ways to explore Washington DC with my kids as they’ve been there many times. This is the follow …
Williamsburg, Virginia is a cultural gem, a place of living history, a lovely colonial smorgasbord. As such, it rightly bills itself as a place to step back in time. That’s a great idea of course, and the costumed interpreters there do a wonderful job of engaging their visitors and explaining the significance of the place. But what if you child isn’t inherently interested in colonial American history?
Never fear – there are lots of ways you can make sure that a trip to Colonial Williamsburg is fun for everyone in the family, history buffs or not.
What do you do with a long weekend in the fall from London? Grab the kids and head up to York for 4 days of vikings, ghosts, food, ruins, music and a whole lot of fun history.
York is a small city, the center of which is contained in a walled circle, and is the best preserved non-capital medieval city in Europe. Many of the streets are narrow with timbered buildings (“as London would have looked before the fire,” my kids pointed out.)
A phenomenal kid-friendly walking tour guide can be the difference between successfully engaging children in the sights of a city or … not.
We’ve recommended Paolo Lenzi to our clients and readers for years and it was fun to receive an email from Holly Schmidt asking to submit a review of his services.
Here is what she said:
If Day 1 in London with kids is about an introduction to London’s royal heritage and iconic sites, an ideal Day 2 is one where you roll your sleeves up and dig into a neighborhood.
The best way to really learn about a place in a meaningful way is to go on a walking tour with a professional guide. Not all guides are created equal, but the good ones give you perspective you can’t get on your own.
Rome can be a wonderful place for families. Full of history and culture, with a lively unique feel—when done well—can make for an unforgettable family vacation. What Italy has going for it, is that it’s generally a family-oriented culture and children are easily welcomed into most restaurants and shops.
You should keep in mind, however, that while magnificent, many of the sites were not designed as museums.