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The Castle of the Angel is always a huge hit with kids and a place of mystery and intrigue for everyone. It’s even more exciting now that the Passetto di Borgo is open for summer hours. This covered passageway connects the castle to the Vatican, several blocks away.
Probably the coolest museum in Rome for kids, the labyrinthine castle was originally built as a humongous mausoleum for Emperor Hadrian (135 AD). Over the centuries, the imperial resting place has served as a fortress, prison, and papal safe house, which is why it was transformed into a palace by artists and architects such as Michelangelo.
During the 1527 Sack of Rome, Pope Clement VII put it to its purpose, scampering across the passageway to safety. With such a checkered past, it’s no wonder it was featured in the movie Angels and Demons.
This summer, from July 16 to September 4th, visitors can have a rare glimpse into the passageway by booking a guided tour: Phone 39-06-32-810.


The museum, along with its 58 splendid rooms, ramps, ramparts, cannon, and terraces is open everyday, except Mondays. The special tour of the Passetto diBorgo runs 10:30-11:30am, Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, and 5:30-6:30pm Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday.
Today, the castle’s moat is a wonderful park with green spaces and some play equipment for younger children, and if you’re hungry, you can grab a bite to eat at the museum’s charming terrace cafe. RWK recommends winding your way through the castle to the very tip top, where you can see its angel up close and enjoy a sweeping view over Rome- Fantastico!

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