When we were in Italy this past summer, we worked with Context Travel for our day at the Vatican Museums. Being vaguely familiar with the crowds made me a little nervous about negotiating the vast museum complex with the kids, and I wanted to make sure they saw the things they needed to see, as well as some of the more obscure things that might pique their interest. Our guide, Valeria, met us at the entrance, and once past security and ticketing, air-kissed and waved us on to little used elevators and through roped off passageways at a quick clip, offering glorious tidbits of information along the way. Theoretically, if we had done our research, we might have managed the crowd aspect of the visit, but Valeria offered something we couldn’t have come up with on our own: an alternate route discerned through experience and ingenuity. We started with the Papal Carriages, a less visited and air-conditioned exhibit that served as a framework for understanding what we were about to see, a quiet place away from the crowds where we could ask questions and listen to the answers, and a starting point that was not overwhelming for the kids. In short order, it was clear we were in the hands of an expert guide, and I was so grateful for her experience and wisdom.