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Family Friendly Attractions in Naples

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Any family looking for a cultural experience and a taste of adventure will be richly rewarded in Naples. If the crowds and chaos in the Centro Storico get too much, then Lungomare, the seafront promenade, is the ideal family recreation ground with parks and playgrounds. Nearby, Pompeii and Vesuvius are intriguing for any age.

 

Animal attractions

 

Among the many attractions of Naples, wildlife is not the first thing that springs to mind. Yet this city has two venerable and long-standing animal institutions – its zoo, dating from 1949, and its aquarium, almost 80 years older. Kids will love the array of animals, while adults will appreciate the history of these places too.

 

Anton Dohrn Aquarium

 

It's the world’s oldest aquarium, and the stately 19th century architecture conceals a playful world of underwater adventure. Children will love the touch tanks where they can dip their hands in and make contact with the darting and flowing sea creatures.

 

Villa Comunale, 80121 Napoli. Tel:+39 81 583 3111

 

Anton Dohrn Aquarium website
Zoo di Napoli

 

Like the aquarium, Naples Zoo may lack in size and showiness, but it more than makes up for it with its sensitive animal habitats and star creatures, ranging from majestic tigers to cute seals. The zoo almost faced disaster in the economic crash, but local passion helped to save the place and keep its animals protected.

 

Viale John Fitzgerald Kennedy, 80125 Napoli. Tel:+39 81 1936 3154

 

Zoo di Napoli website

 

Parks and nature

 

As a city in the curve of a Mediterranean bay, Naples is blessed with a pleasant, recreational waterfront and nearby beaches. You’ll want to make the most of the weather while you’re here, and a trip to the park or to a nearby island, is the perfect antidote to the rush of sightseeing.

 

Villa Communale

 

A focal point of Lungomare, this waterfront park is the ideal recreation spot. Grand Neo-Classical pillars and romantic fountains frame the view of Vesuvius across the bay. There are long, tree-lined walkways where the kids can cavort about safely, as you make your way from the aquarium to a coffee stop further along Lungomare.

 

Piazza Vittoria, 80121 Naples. Tel:+39 81 795 3614

 

Villa Communale website

 

Wild excursions

 

Located right next to one of the world’s most famous volcanoes, Naples is the perfect base for adventurous family excursions. The story of Pompeii is one that every child learns at school, so what better way to do some hands-on learning than with a visit to the site itself? Plus, there’s that hulking volcano ready to be explored.

 

Mount Vesuvius

 

Every kid – and adult, for that matter – is fascinated by volcanoes, so go one better than a papier mache model and some baking soda, and journey to the top of Mount Vesuvius to peer into the crater of this still active and fuming volcano. If you’re fit and active, you can hike, otherwise, there’s a shuttle bus.

 

Via Palazzo del Principe, 80044 Naples. Tel:+39 81 865 3911

 

Mount Vesuvius website

 

Family dining

 

In Italy, family is everything, and you will see whole clans, from babes-in-arms to grandparents, dining out together late into the evening. There are very few commercialized "child-friendly" restaurants, but nearly all Naples eateries welcome bambini with open arms - and a feast of pizza.

 

Pizzeria Gino Sorbillo

 

Though there are numerous contenders jostling for his crown, Gino Sorbillo is still widely regarded as the best pizza-maker in Naples. It’s a small place, and waiting times can be long, but go early and you should get a table. Kids will certainly be keen to test for themselves whether Sorbillo is the king of pizza.

 

Via dei Tribunali, 80138 Naples. Tel:+39 81 446643

 

Pizzeria Gino Sorbillo website

 

Le Cantine de Petrone

 

Located on a hilltop in a leafy suburb, this is a restaurant made for families. There’s a children’s area, with a welcome from Disney characters, and you can even have a personalized set dinner. It’s a favorite of local families, and with a booking system and plenty of space, it’s a breather from the crowded central restaurants.

 

Via San Romualdo, 80131 Naples. Tel:+39 81 587 1004

 

Le Cantine de Petrone website