I loved the little snippet of Italy we got on our holiday a couple of years ago, it really wet my appetite for the good foods and sights. One of my holiday goals is to rent a home in Italy and explore the countryside, beaches and as many sights as we can. So here is my list of the top 10 family-friendly things to do when we get to visit the wonderful Country, that’s shaped like a boot…
Investigate before you go
The big thing for me is to make sure I understand what is around the home we are renting. What facilities we are near for example. Where are the local shops? How far are we from the beach? Are there any local water parks? Is there a swimming pool? Check out the excursion companies too as sometimes prices can be quite high if you book it on your holiday.
Hire a car
If you are renting a home you will need something to get out and about. Hiring a car makes it easy from the outset, you hop off the plane and there is your car waiting for you and you can get about for the rest of the holiday. Italy has a lot of small, windy roads, so it’s best to make sure your car is suitable for the Country.
Now that the technical bits are over with, lets look at the fun stuff:
Visit a beach
Sardinia has some fabulous family friendly beaches. You can do horse riding on the beach, to learning to dive, there is something for children of all ages to do. There are also some coastal hikes available which would let you take in some breathtaking scenes. You cannot fail with a white sandy beach.
See some of Italy’s history
Take the children to see ancient Rome, ruins and old museums are great for older children. The Colosseum is a great place to capture the imaginations of children – stories of Gladiators and huge beasts is sure to keep their attention and inspire good holiday memories. Not only that it looks like a huge building that will wow even the younger ones.
Leaning tower of “pizza”
Yes, the children thought it was hilarious to say pizza instead of Pisa when we visited here. We did it on an excursion on our holiday a couple of years ago. It was a long coach ride, then a long walk to see the wonders. But it was worth it. The children were amazed and so were the grown ups. It was very hot, recommend taking your water!
Venture into rural Italy
Get a feel for how rural Italians live but venturing out of the tourist areas. Try a local eatery: ice cream, pizza and pasta are usually a winner for the little ones. So you should be able to get settled in most places. A menù bambini (children’s menu) is easily accessible and you can also order a mezzo piatto (half-portion) if you are not hungry. For fussy little ones try a simple plate of pasta with butter or olive oil and Parmesan. Delicious.
Visit the chocolate factory
You can take a tour around the chocolate factory in Perugina, it’s a real life Wonka factory! It looks absolutely amazing and the children will be amazed watching how the chocolate is made and obviously getting to taste it too.
Climb up the domes of Florence
Duomo, in Florence, is the cities most iconic landmark. Construction of Duomo took almost 150 years, it’s incredible. If the kiddies are over 5 years old then they are allowed to climb up into the dome. It sounds like something that would amaze me and the children, the size of the dome would be overwhelming I am sure.
Book a boat trip
The Aeolian Islands are 7 tiny volcanic islands off Sicily. You can book a boat trip to island hop around the Aeolian Islands, which sounds like a great adventure. You can see smouldering volcanoes and enjoy a bubbling hot mud bath. I can just picture Isla asking if the volcanoes are from Moana!
The place where there is only water
I can only mean Venice! If the children are a little older then you can venture around Venice without worrying too much! (she says). Not only is there so many sights to see, history to uncover and garden mazes to get lost in. There are Traghettos to ride. These are stripped down gondolas, they would be a lot of fun to the children.
If you have any other fabulous ideas of what to do in Italy with the children, I would love to hear them. Please share in the comments below or on social media: @mummyconstant.