Preparing for family holidays in Italy
Preparing for family holidays in Europe can be a challenge for parents. City breaks in countries like Italy can be especially difficult to explain to children. How do you prepare children for somewhere that is culturally so different from what they may be used to. This can be a particular problem if they have never been overseas before or if their only experience abroad is sitting on a beach and now you want to take them somewhere that the main attractions will be culture and history. If this situation is not handled carefully the children may start to resent the holiday or to dislike the idea of the trip.
It doesn’t have to be this way. By carefully preparing for family holidays in Italy it is possible to show your family the many attractions that the country has to offer. You can talk to them about how child-friendly much of Italy is and how much fun you are all going to have together as a family.
To help in your preparations for family holidays in Italy here is our guide to child-friendly activities in the major Italian tourist destinations.
Florence is perhaps the most challenging of Italian cities for young families but there is still plenty to do here for children.
The Boboli Gardens at Palazzo Pitti are a great example. There is lots of open space here for children to run climb trees and burn off some of their energy.
The Children’s Museum located at the Palazzo Vecchio is a good place to make the renaissance city come alive for young children. All the exhibits here are designed with children in mind and an educational guide in English is available.
The planetarium and the natural history museum in Milan are located close to each other and both will fascinate young minds. In the natural history museum children will love the collection of dinosaur skeletons while the stargazing program at the planetarium will occupy children for hours. In between these two site there is open parkland to explore. The Giardini Pubblici Indro Montanelli features permanent carnival rides as well as playgrounds that have been built especially for young children.
Family holidays in Italy are not complete without a visit to Rome. A visit to the ancient city is a fascinating experience for the whole family. A good way to get acquainted with Rome is to take the city bus tour. Buy some snacks for the children and they will be happily entertained while you listen to the audio tour and enjoy the sights in comfort.
After the tour it’s time to take walk around some of the most famous sites in Rome. Tour the Colosseum first and be sure to get your photograph taken with some of the costumed gladiators nearby. For a more active ancient Roman experience then why not try ‘Gladiator School‘. They offer two hour classes with demonstrations of gladiator kit and the chance to try some mock battles for yourself.
Venice is more famous for romance than family holidays in Italy but with some careful planning it is possible to make this city fun for kids as well as adults. For children the main attraction of Venice will be the strangeness of the city. This city built on water has a unique magic that will appeal to children just as much as it does to adults. Depending on the age of your children one of the regular ghost walks of the city can be a fun way to spend an evening. The bloody past of the city comes alive to kids as they enjoy listening to all the gory adventures from long ago. If ghosts don’t appeal then spend some time at the Peggy Guggenheim collection. It is fascinating collection and there is a fantastic garden to explore as well. Family holidays in Italy can be fun. Just do some careful planning and enjoy the trip as a family taking time to do things you can all enjoy together.