The Marche for families
Fun and relax for children and adults
The Marche, a region enclosed between the Apennines and the Adriatic Sea, offering modern tourism facilities, parks and natural beauties, gently sloping hills, beaches and bathing facilities, is ideal for families with children who want to enjoy a relaxing holiday and at the same time have fun together.
A vacation in the Marche means hospitality, good food, and fun for all ages, rest and relax for parents, sports and nature for everybody. There are many services dedicated to families that offer vacations in hotels, farms and B&B equipped with mini clubs, play areas and qualified staff that organise parties, sports competitions or shows where children are in the spotlight. Many structures also have a baby sitting service upon request, designed to give parents some free time to go shopping or simply take a stroll along the beach while their children are having fun in a healthy and safe environment with a trustworthy person that is taking care of them. There are also many beaches along the Adriatic coast that offer this service and a space dedicated to children with toys and sports equipment: from Pesaro to San Benedetto del Tronto, passing through Senigallia and Civitanova Marche, bathing facilities are designed to respect the tranquillity and, at the same time, the vivacity of children. In all five provinces of the Marche, furthermore, there are amusement and water parks, zoos and natural reserves created with families in mind.
Amusement parks in the Marche
In the area of Ancona, the Parco Zoo in Falconara (AN) covers an area of 60,000 sqm: initially it was only an amusement park for children, with toys and swings, today it is a zoo which every year adds new species of animals and is equipped with picnic areas, bars and free areas for dogs to allow them to experience the beauties of nature.
Going towards the southern part of the Marche, in the province of Macerata there are three water parks: Acquaparco VerdeAzzurro in Cingoli (MC), Malibù Acquapark in Porto Recanati (MC) and Parco Eldorado in Apiro (MC), ideal environments for children to play and have fun and also for adults wanting to use the solarium and whirlpools.
The Marche also is home to the famous Adventure Park of Lago di Cingoli, consisting of air routes in the trees, artificial routes between canyons, tunnels and streams.
Nature parks made for children
Starting from the north of the Marche, the Parco Sasso Simone e Simoncello in Carpegna (PU), which covers over 1,600 hectares, offers itineraries for families and a fun-creative laboratory for children that can enjoy typical products with their parents without having to travel long distances, everything comes from the surrounding areas.
There is a magical and surreal atmosphere at the Caves of Frasassi in Genga (AN), within the Regional Natural Park of Gola Rossa and Frasassi. The grottoes, of extraordinary beauty, are a very attractive destination for the adventurous, families, and nature lovers who come from all over the world to admire the unique natural shapes of stalactites and stalagmites.
Located only 15 km from the famous caves, in the area close to Macerata, precisely in in Felceto a Matelica (MC), is the Parco delle Pietre del Drago which is home to sixteen life-size dinosaurs set in their habitat and the interesting Museum of Palaeontology rich with fossils.
For those who love astronomy, there are many planetariums and observatories in the Marche that are part of the circuit AMA (Amateur Astronomers Association Marche), among the most noteworthy are the Planetarium of the Nautical Technical Institution A.Elia in Ancona, the Astronomical Observatory Conte Bruti Marini Mario and the Villa del Balì Observatory in Saltara (PU) which can hold up to 50 people.
Archaeological parks in the Marche
In the area of Ancona, not to be missed is the Archaeological Park of Sentinum in Sassoferrato with the remains of the Roman town Sentinum still currently visible and that make up only a small portion of the old urban extension. It is possible to visit an impressive public building for thermal use, which dates back to the late-Republican era, a building used as a foundry and the remains of a large suburban Imperial age complex dating back to the first century AD.
Also famous is the Archaeological Park of the Roman City of Suasa in Castelleone di Suasa (AN) where you can visit the commercial complex with shops and laboratories,two burial grounds, the amphitheatre built at the end of the first century BC, private homes and, above all, the beautiful Patrician villa Domus dei Coiedii, which possesses prestigious environments with magnificent mosaics depicting mythological, floral and geometric scenes. This site is of particular importance, in fact, the Roman municipium of Suasa that stood along the diverticulum of via Flaminia that went from Vicus Cales (Cagli) to SenaGallica (Senigallia) and was an important centre of the Valley of Cesano.
Still in the same area, in Urbisaglia (MC), is the Archaeological Park of Urbs Salvia, which includes the area of the Roman colony of Urbs Salvia, developed in the Augustan age according to a unitary town plan. Of the architectonic works built during the mentioned era, the main monumental buildings are to date still visible: the following sites can be visited, the Roman cistern, the theatre auditorium (1st cent. BC), the scenic building and the parascaenia, decorated with Pompeian style paintings, terraced squares, the Augustan age temple of the Salus Augusta with still visible valuable frescoes.
In Fermo, the Archaeological Park of Falerius Picenus a Falerone (FM) can be visited, made up mainly of the urban area of the antique city from which it takes its name. A monumental building of inestimable historical-artistic value which stands isolated in the middle can be seen: this is one of the better preserved Roman theatres in The Marche, where it is still possible to admire the first and second order of the steps and the view of the circular and rectangular niched forestage.
Instead, in the lower area of the Marche is Cupramarittima (AP) where it is possible to visit the Archaeological Park which preserves finds dating back to Lower and Mid Paleolithic times. Its history in the Piceno period is particularly important in relation to the shrine dedicated to the goddess Cupra: abundant necropolis datable starting from the 6th century BC document an extremely articulated settlement for the time.
Other than the archaeological parks, the cities of Pesaro, Fano, Senigallia, Jesi and Ascoli Piceno are worth visiting for their conformation and urban grid. The same can be said for the monuments such as the Arch of Trajan in Ancona, the Arch of Augustus in Fano, the Mallio Bridge in Cagli, the Grossi Bridge in Cantiano, Porta Gemina and Porta del Solestà in Ascoli Piceno, the numerous Roman age Theatres and Amphitheatres that still host interesting theatre seasons.
Museums for children in the Marche
In the southern part, the Malacologico Piceno Museum in Cupramarittima (AP) is of great interest to children who can closely observe more than seven hundred thousand specimens of shells. Also in this area and precisely in Smerillo (AP), the Children's Art Gallery Museum brings together drawings and other forms of expression (writing, poetry, photographs, etc.) on the theme of Peace, as well as an open space/workshop dedicated to interculturality.
At San Benedetto del Tronto (AP), a city on the Adriatic Coast, it was not possible to not have a Museum of the Sea Centre (Fish Museum, Amphora Museum and Maritime Civilisation Museum of The Marche). Divided into three sections, it is one of a kind in the region, and one of the few of its kind existing in Italy. The centre allows you to take an enchanting journey into the memories, traditions and culture of the sea allowing us to discover how a ship was built, what it was like to live in the sea, the rituals to promote a good relation with the sea, to listen to the sounds of the sea, admire vintage photos and reconstructions of the marine environment and marine life.
Original and of international interest is the Hat Museum in Montappone (AP) that demonstrates all of the straw processing stages, from the harvest to the selection, from the braiding to the sewing, up to the hot press which gives shape to the hat. It exhibits peculiar items, from hats for dolls to more bizarre and sought after straw parasols.
Going towards Macerata, a must see is the Bonaccorsi Palace with the Carriage Museum devoted entirely to this means of transport, with well-preserved specimens and interactive media that even allow the reconstruction of a few trips. In the museum, subject to a meticulous cataloguing since 2001, there is also a section dedicated to all types of carpentry tools and equipment used for the construction of various types of carriages.
The city of Fermo instead, Villa Vitali is home to the Scientific Museums, a cultural centre that includes the People's Ethnographic Museum, The meteorite, the Collection of photographic equipment and the Pipe Museum.
In the area of the province of Ancona, the Omero State Tactile Museum represents national excellency and is indicated for children and disabled children. The motto of the museum is “It is forbidden not to touch”, here it is possible to approach the works of art using, above all, the sense of touch, a perceptive channel excluded from almost all museums. There is also in Italy, therefore, a museum that made tactile observation its main channel of knowledge: touching faces, bodies, gestures, expressions, discover volumes and perspectives through ones own hands is an imperative in this space.
To know more about the trades and in particular the manufacturing of paper, the Paper and Watermark Museum of Fabriano is among the most fun of the area, here children learn about the manufacturing of this ancient and valuable support through demonstrations and educational courses. Also in Fabriano is peculiar educational space, Museum of Bicycle Arts and Crafts entirely dedicated to the ancient craft on two wheels: a slice of Italian history between the Twenties and Sixties of the Twentieth century with objects, photographs and tales that take us back in time. In Fabriano (AN), there is also the Peculiarities and Sci-Fi Museum, the only one of its kind in Europe with various sections dedicated to special effects and the most famous sci-fi and horror films such as King Kong, Frankenstein and Zombie.
A space dedicated to music is the International Accordion Museum in Castelfidardo (AN), located in the sixteen-century Town Hall, it brings together collects organs, accordions and other musical instruments, evidence of an industry that has made Castelfidardo one of the main world centres for the production of accordions made in Italy.
Towards the north, in the province of Pesaro-Urbino, in Saltara is the famous Balì Museum, a multimedia space dedicated to science established in 2004, with the necessity of promoting the spreading of scientific culture in central Italy. With 35 interactive stations to try first hand, the museum is in line with the modern international science-centres and is distributed on an exhibition space of two thousand square meters. It also has a planetarium for the observation of the sky under an eight metre dome and an astronomical observatory, where education and training activities are carried out on a regular basis through experimentation and active learning. The Gilt Bronzes Museum in Pergola (PU) is fascinating and it has a historical-artistic and archaeological section where the Gilt Bronzes from Cartoceto di Pergola, are exhibited, the only surviving Roman gilt bronze equestrian group accidentally discovered in 1946 in the village that gave it a name.
Instead, towards the Coast, in Pesaro, is the Washington Patrignani Maritime Museum-Pesaro illustrating the history of the port city from its origins to the present day and the culture of the “people of the sea”, providing valuable information to discover the characteristics of the original Pesaro navy with its customs and practices, survived to this day.
Events and shows for children
Another event aimed at children is the Playland, a party for families who invade the ancient medieval town of Serra San Quirico (AN), for a playful event entirely dedicated to children: the streets are full of puppets, clowns, goblins, princesses and games to suit even the most demanding children.
Very active in Jesi (AN) is the Pirate Theatre that offers workshops, conferences and theatrical laboratories dedicated to the multiple expressive techniques belonging to the universe of puppets and figurative arts.
Parco Zoo Falconara
Parco acquatico Eldorado
Parco Avventura del Lago di Cingoli
For itineraries and information for archaeological parks in The Marche, we recommend visiting the website: www.archeomarche.it
Natural parks for children:
Parco Sasso Simone e Simoncello
Grotte di Frasassi
Parco delle Pietre del Drago
For planetarium and observatory visits
AMA (Amateur Astronomers Association Marche)
Museums for children and adolescents
Museo dei Bronzi Dorati
Museo della marineria Washington Patrignani-Pesaro
Museo Tattile di Omero
Museo della carta e della filigrana
Museo delle Arti e dei Mestieri in Bicicletta
Museo delle curiosità e della fantascienza “Grande museo”
Museo Internazionale della Fisarmonica
Musei scientifici di Villa Vitali
Museo della Carrozza
Museo Malacologico Piceno
Museo Pinacoteca dell'Arte dei Bambini
Museo del Mare e delle Anfore
Museo del Cappello
For information on folk and country museums:
Events for children
Theatres of the World
Teatro dei Balocchi
Teatro del Canguro
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