This was the BEST place to take the kids after studying ancient Greece, the Etruscans, and Rome (although our Roman studies aren't complete yet.) The Villa is based on an actual Roman Villa, which was buried by the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius and later excavated. The architecture is stunning and we kept looking up to see intricate ceilings, gorgeous columns, and frescoes everywhere.
The Getty Villa has a large collection of antiquities from ancient Greece, Etruria, and Rome. There were lots and lots of vases with paintings depicting the gods and goddesses, the tales of the Odyssey, and other familiar myths. There were statues, mosaics, frescoes, and even a couple of intricately carved marble sarcophaguses. Kimball and Henry lingered at each artifact, anxious to read about it, study it, and recount how it related to what they already knew. I couldn't have been more thrilled with their reaction to the galleries.
Bronwen and Ian were less impressed. Thankfully, my mom was with us, and she took them exploring the gardens. We all spent quite a while in the "Family Forum", where there were hands-on activities including drawing on dozens of vases with dry-erase markers, posing in front of a screen to make our shadows resemble the art on the vases, and coloring our own.
We spent much longer there than we'd planned and had to travel home in LA's rush hour traffic, but it was well worth it. I highly reccommend this museum to any family studying ancient cultures.