This spring I was invited to bring my kids to visit for the grand re-opening of Rainbow MagicLand, an amusement park just outside of Rome in Valmontone. I say “re-opening” because this year the park is under new management and wanted to put its best foot forward with some local bloggers and Igers. I took them up on the offer, and here’s what we found out!
Getting there in the Magic RainbowBus!
Ok, so I just made that name up. But, since the park is outside of Rome, they offer a shuttle bus from Termini to get you there. That’s convenient, especially for tourists. Personally I don’t own a car so it was the only way I would have managed to get out there. It’s about a half-hour ride. The shuttle bus ticket is available for purchase online, and includes park entrance. The shuttle bus + park entrance ticket costs just €1 more than the regular park entrance ticket, so it’s much cheaper than driving. The bus departs from and returns to Termini station. There are two morning buses and two evening buses (the park is open in the evenings during the summer).
Gattobaleno, the mascot, is a big hit!
My kids loved the park mascot, Gattobaleno, which is a mixture of the Italian words for cat and rainbow. So let’s call him Rainbow Cat, shall we? He walks around the park and Olivia here was loving the fact that she got to hold his hand.
Parents, no worries, there are GPS trackers for your kiddos!
At the gift shop as you enter the park, you can borrow a GPS locator necklace for your kids to wear. That way if they get separated from you, and they keep that necklace on, then technically speaking you should be able to locate them wherever they are inside the park. I thought this was a cool innovation. Would have saved me a lot as a kid, as I always seemed to be wandering away from my parents in stores. We did a practical try-out, however, and I have to say that my kids didn’t want to wear the necklaces. They’re a bit cumbersome for kids. They’re sort of heavy and clunky. So we ended up not using the service. But still, I like the idea. It could be improved if they found a way to imbed the GPS into a lighter-weight device that you could perhaps pin onto a kid’s shirt without it weighing them down.
The service is called Fisk.io (Italian for “whistle” is fischio) and it costs €5 to rent the device, which is accessible through an app on your smartphone.
You can eat in the magic castle!
We ate lunch inside the magic castle, and it was very medieval-ish, complete with wait staff in costumes. The kiddos liked the crowns and what-not that come with the kids’ meal. They weren’t that thrilled with the toy that came with it (a water-filled ruler–rulers aren’t much of a big deal for 5 and 7 year olds…). I have to say that the mixed meat grill and the mixed plate of cheeses that I tried was delicious though! I’d recommend the restaurant get small plastic cups with lids and straws instead, or water bottles. My kids broke one of the delicate glasses that you see in the photo. (Here you can see Olivia wearing the Fisk.io but then she took it off).
Cool down with water games then dry off!
Polaretti, the company that markets freeze pops here in Italy, sponsored a water area where kids can play water games and cool off. Then, there are these big human-size drying machines that you can use to “blow dry” yourself and/or your kids when you’re done. I like the idea here, I think it’s a good one. I couldn’t afford the €2-per-dry price tag though. But I heard from other parents that the dryers worked well. My kids just had to dry off naturally. I figure in the summer these wouldn’t even be needed. I would have used them if they had cost a bit less, say, 50 cents. But I realize that probably isn’t realistic given the high costs of electricity. In any case, sort of a fun innovation.
There are some “big-kid” rides too!
The park has some rides for the “coraggiosi” or the brave among you. In addition to that rollercoaster that you see above, there’s also one of those rides that does a free fall.
Kids love the kids’ area!
My kiddos and I spent most of our time in the bambini area. There were plenty of rides for them to try out and they didn’t get bored.
My son LOVED driving the cars.
Olivia had fun in this play area.
All in all, we had a great day out. The only thing that might be an issue for families is cost. The regular ticket price is €35 for adults and €29 for kids ages 10 and under. On some of the lower-traffic days, however, the costs go down (for example some Sundays are €22/€18). Check the park’s calendar for prices.
You can also get package deals. For example right now there’s a special going for 2 adults and 2 kids for a total of €88.
As a point of comparison, some other popular activities for kids and families in Rome are the Bioparco Zoo (€15/adult, €12 child 100 meters+/3 ft, 2.5 in.+ tall and 12 and under), Explora Children’s Museum (€8 adult and €8 children 3 and up), renting a pedal bike at Villa Borghese (€12/hr), day at the pool (Piscina delle Rose, €16/adult, €10/child 6-10 years old). So all things considered, on the lower priced days, Rainbow MagicLand is actually a pretty good value because once you’re in the park everything is included. You don’t have to worry about tickets for the shows or rides. That’s good because it’s super annoying when you have to pay extra for things with kids around. Costs, like with all amusement parks, start to add up if you fall prey to the snack carts and gift shops.
My family’s verdict!
What we loved:
My girls loved the real-life Winx. You have to pay money to get pictures with them, though. They weren’t doing the stage show when we visited (prior to May 1), but they do have a stage show as part of the entrance cost.
My son really liked the go-carts, which are called Formula Cars. He also liked the Battaglia Navale (Naval Battle) ride. Some dude shot us with water from a pedestrian bridge and laughed. That made my daughter cry. 🙂 We didn’t wear the plastic raincoats. You don’t actually get all that wet.
What we could have skipped:
Bubble Magic. We were pretty stoked about this show but it wasn’t that great. Maybe we had a magician on an off day. The one in this video looks awesome. The one we had wasn’t able to keep the kids under control and wasn’t able to perform many tricks with the bubbles, so it was quite a disappointment. So I’d say if it’s like the video, ok, but it was hit-or-miss for us.
Everyone we encountered on the staff was friendly and helpful. There is an option to buy a “short line” pass but we didn’t encounter many lines (we went on the first day the park opened back up). The pass (“Magicpass“, naturally) costs €18 and gets you into an express line.
I’d say, if you’re on a short trip to Rome, you probably won’t want to make it out this way because you’ll be too busy hitting all the other attractions. But, if you have more than a few days in the Eternal City, this can make for a fun change of pace. Kids, especially the littles, can only take so much guided touring, and especially in the summer heat, this could be a fun way to cool off and get a break from the urban environment.
Via della Pace, Valmontone, RM