Yes!! It’s time for our “girls only” citytrip to Genoa! Lotte and I are leaving on our first weekend trip together. And if you’re doing it, better do it well! I can tell you if Genoa is a must do or don’t after these 3 days! Let’s go, visiting Genoa with kids!
Genoa with kids: day 1
We fly at 14:40hrs from Schiphol Airport, stopover in Paris and fly through to Genoa. KLM flies directly if you prefer a direct flight and paying a bit more for your ticket isn’t a problem.
Traveling alone with a toddler
I acquired a few nifty gadgets for my first trip alone with Lotte. Seeing as Genoa isn’t exactly a buggy friendly city, bringing a carrier seemed more appropriate. After almost 4 years, Lotte has grown too big for the Ergo Baby so we bought the Tula Toddler instead. Walking in Genoa with a tired child: CHECK! But how will I cope at airports? Lotte isn’t exactly the best walker and doesn’t enjoy the long walks at airports. For this reason I bought the Trunki. Lotte got to pick one herself. She picked a tiger that she now calls her dog. The Trunki is built so a child can sit on it. It has two options: u can use it as a walker or pull your child while they’re seated on it. So, walking those long walks at the airport: CHECK!
We take the bus to Schiphol Airport. Lotte is soooo proud that she gets to go on holiday by herself with mom, she tells everyone. When we arrive at the airport we grab a few sandwiches and head on down to security. Lotte pulls her Trunki along everywhere which turns a lot of heads and causes a lot of smiles.
The first flight to Paris goes great. You ascend, get a snack and a drink, and you land. Both snack and drink go unnoticed by Lotte whose fast asleep right after takeoff. Apparently it’s all rather exciting, travelling alone with mom.
When we land at Paris CDG we need to take the shuttle bus from gate F to gate G. There, boarding is done with a special system. There’s a large hall with some restaurants, shops and a lot of sitting areas. On the screens that show your flight it doesn’t show a gate yet. 30 minutes before departure the gate number appears on the screen. As a result, a large number of people is crowded in front of the screen. Not very handy.
Not 30 minutes but 15 minutes before departure our number is shown so off we rush to our gate.
Lotte is in good shape after her little power nap and spends most of the time during our flight from Paris to Genoa on her iPad.
There we are!
Hello Genoa!!! We land on a small airport and walk out of the plane and into warm Genoa without any form of security whatsoever. The taxi brings us to our hotel in the heart of Genoa, Best Western City Plus, in 30 minutes for 25€. We have a quick bite to eat in the hotel’s restaurant and quickly go to sleep.
Genoa with kids: day 2
Goooooood morning! Our first day in Genoa, looking forward to it! Before we leave we have a lovely breakfast! Lotte has her usual peanut butter sandwich and an apple. I notice they have soy milk and gluten free crackers for people with allergies.
Nervi is a recommendation
After breakfast we take the subway and train to Nervi, a beautiful village on the coast. The railway runs directly across the shoreline. Along the shore you’ll find a coastal walk with the most amazing views, a certain must do!!! First we walk to the village, I’m loving all the colored little houses, and afterwards we walk along the shoreline to Villa Grimaldi, an art museum where Lotte gets to do a “photography” workshop. They explain how they used to develop photos in the old days and Lotte gets to make something herself too. She absolutely loves it and is very proud of her self-made piece of art.
Museum and playing
After Villa Grimaldi we walk into the park next to the museum where we find a large playground. Lotte is very pleased. After 15 minutes of running around, sliding and climbing we pay a short visit to the Galeria d’Arte Moderna and then we head to the coastal walk again.
Restaurant with a pool!
We have our lunch in Medusa Bagni, a restaurant at the water with pools. And not just any pools, but sea water pools in the rocks. The water is really cold at first but once you’re through its lovely. After swimming we relax and dry in the sun, now this is a holiday!
At the end of the afternoon we take the train back to Genoa. Before dinner we make a quick pit stop at the hotel for a refreshing shower. After walking around for a day in 28 degrees it’s no unnecessary luxury. We dine in restaurant Le Rune. Lotte sticks to fries and I’m enjoying a lovely truffle steak, absolutely delicious!!
We fall into our beds around 22:00 o’clock. Genoa has surprised me so far, such a lovely and versatile city!
Genoa with kids: day 3
We start off this day with a nice little breakfast too. Afterwards we walk through the historical inner city towards the Galata Museo del Mare, which means as much as ‘museum of the sea’.
Galata Museo del Mare
But before we enter the museum we get onto a beautiful sailboat! We gently sail out of the harbor and into the open sea. The view from the boat over Genoa is tremendous! When we are at sea the sails are hoisted and Captain Lotte is let behind the stir. Her face is just priceless, I don’t think she could be any more proud!
After our wonderful sailing adventure we enter the museum. It’s a museum that has really thought of its younger audiences. Aside from its many expositions you will find scaled ships, a real life raft, a really cool VR (virtual reality) experience and you get to look around in a real submarine that lays in front of the museum in the water. This makes it the only submarine in Italy that is really in the sea. The ship is last used in the year 2000 by the Italian navy and now serves as a museum. It’s really interesting to be able to walk around here, although I did conclude that I’m a bit to claustrophobic for a career in the navy.
After this wonderful and educational morning we need some food in our bellies. We enjoy a great lunch (although Lotte disagrees on that) in the old harbor of Genoa.
After lunch we walk to the aquarium where we don’t just pay a visit but where we take a backstage tour too. A guide takes us to the dolphins, the kitchen (where all the food for the animals is prepared), a “backroom” with unique endangered baby turtles, and we watch plankton under the microscope. After the backstage tour we walk around through the aquarium by ourselves.
The shark tank has glass from the floor to the ceiling and Lotte is a little scared that the sharks may be able to eat her through the glass. The seals and manatees are a little more to her liking but Lotte’s favorite thing is the “design your own fish” activity. On a touch screen you get to assemble your very own fish, its shape, color and everything. When you press “ready” the fish appears in front of you in a large digital aquarium. I think Lotte designed at least 8 fish.
When we leave the aquarium it’s already 17:00 o’clock. We decide to buy some gifts for Floris and Kev at the market, have a quick bite at the Mac and then head on back to the hotel seeing as the alarm will go off at 05:00 o’clock already.
But we come across a bouncing cushion park at the harbor on our way to the Mac and of course Lotte wants to go for a jump. I pay 3€ for about 15 minutes of jumping and this way Lotte is burning away her chicken nugget calories even before she eats them.
After our “dinner” we go for a nice walk through the old city on our way to the hotel. It needs to be said that, for a “bad walker”, Lotte has done really well! I think she may have walked 8 km on her own of the 12 km total each day. The rest of the time she spent in the carrier. I’m a huge fan of the Tula Toddler I acquired especially for this trip.
Packing and sleeping
When we arrive at the hotel Lotte says “Mom, I really need to take a shower, I’m so sweaty I can’t handle it any more”. Enough said. While Lotte is showering I start packing. We’re both in bed on time but it still hurts a little when the alarm sounds at 05:00 o’clock in the morning.
Genoa with kids: day 4
When the alarm goes I need multiple ways to bring Lotte back to the land of the living before she budges. We walk with our stuff down stairs and hop into a cab.
At Genoa Airport everything goes nice and smooth and before we know it we are aboard the plane and ascending.
We stop over at Rome FCO on our way home and even though its 09:00 o’clock we have some ice cream to soften the 2 hour waiting time there. Lotte uses the 2 hours and 40 minutes flight from Rome to Amsterdam for a nap and we arrive on Schiphol Airport well rested where we grab a bus back home, in the rain unfortunately.
We had a really great time in Genoa, a fantastic child friendly city with a delicious kitchen and a wonderful climate. We will certainly return here someday, Genoa with kids is absolutely a must do!