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The Sunday Times Travel writers Mark Hodson and David Wickers.

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Ask the Experts: Are Rome and Greece good for October half term?

Q. We have three children (twins of 11 and an eight-year-old) who are keen to see the ancient sites of Rome and Vesuvius but we want to avoid peak travel (and heat).  I have always wanted to explore the sites of ancient Greece. Would you recommend these destinations for a two-week half-term in October.  In addition to sightseeing we would like to explore, relax and swim (preferably in the sea).

bay of naples Sorrentotramontano hotel sorrento Sorrentorelais blue hotel sorrento Sorrento

A. “October weather can be iffy on the Med in October in both destinations, so I would probably favour Italy as there are more non weather dependent things to enjoy. Also there is no single place in Greece where you would get more than one or two ancient sites without touring, say, the Pelopponese which I wouldn’t recommend for kids of those ages.

In Italy, it’s easy to combine Rome and Naples by train or open-jaw air ticket. I would not stay in Naples but rather in Sorrento which has swimming (in the sea from jetties or hotel pools) plus an easy train ride to Vesuvius, Pompeii and Herculaneum plus ferries to Capri and other islands.”

– David.

We recommend a few companies that offer holidays in the Sorrento/Amalfi coast region. They include:

Sardatur Holidays – specialist tour operator with years of experience in Italy

Long Travel – a great range of hotels plus some self-catering accommodation

CV Villas – smart villas and apartments

Kirker Holidays – a good mix of hotels and very adept at putting together multi-destination trips in Italy

Note: All the travel companies featured on this site are personally recommended by our editors. Companies pay us a flat annual fee; we don’t get any additional payments if you click on their sites or make a booking. Those fees pay for the upkeep of our site, so we can keep it current and reliable. See more about how we work.