Italy offers a wealth of fun and educational activities for kids of all ages. As a parent, you’ll love the history, architecture, sweeping landscapes, gorgeous beaches, and (of course) the food! Play your cards right and your kids will love all of that, too. At Gusella, our travel-ready tots, toddlers, and tweens love all things Italy, and we wanted to share some of the best places in Italy for kids with you. No matter where you end up, we recommend letting your kids help you plan the trip. Take them to the library or surf the web with them as you look for fun things to do together. When your kids have a say in the itinerary, they’ll be much more engaged in the trip before you ever leave the house!
If your kids have even the slightest interest in history, then Rome is an absolute must-see. With such grand sites like the Colosseum, Parthenon, Trevi Fountain, and Vatican City, there is something for everyone in Rome. As the capital city of Italy, Rome boasts countless museums, many of which have great exhibits and interactive displays specifically for kids and areas of interest catered to different age groups.
As you walk by the Colosseum, talk to your kids about the ancient gladiators and their epic battles against man and beast! Then, surprise them by taking them to their very own Gladiator School. There, they’ll be immersed in the history of ancient Rome in a fun, entertaining setting.
While you’re creating your itinerary for Rome, remember that many of the most popular sites for kids and adults alike can attract large crowds and long lines. Plan ahead and see which of the sites allow you to purchase tickets ahead of time. Some tour groups also have special deals that allow you to completely skip the lines, which is especially helpful with kids.
When in Southern Italy, the Amalfi Coast is hard to beat. Picturesque towns (we love Salerno and Sorrento) dot the beautiful coastline. Pristine beaches, coves straight out of pirate stories, and wonderful dining options define the Amalfi experience.
With kids in tow, a day at the beach is a great way to spend an afternoon. Depending on where you are staying, there are multiple options for family-friendly beaches. If you’re up for an adventure, we highly recommend taking a boat to some remote, family-run restaurants that are only accessible by boat. These “beach clubs” have private swimming beaches and coves for you and your family and cute restaurants. Check out Ristorante Santa Croce and its private beach. Its prime location, modest water-activity rentals (kayaks, canoes, etc.), and simple, yet delicious, menu cannot be missed.
We must admit, we’re a bit biased when it comes to Milan…after all, Milan is where Gusella first started making handmade children’s shoes on Via Spadari! But, despite our obvious love for Milan, there is plenty for you and your family in the Fashion Capital of the World.
Milan is a large and very accessible city with a high-speed train (subway) and tram system. Day passes are inexpensive and will be useful when your kiddos’ feet are getting tired. Hop off the train and check out the Duomo, Milan’s massive cathedral. Kids will love climbing to the top of it or enjoy chasing the pigeons in the large piazza that leads up to the Duomo.
After a day of exploring the sights, sounds, and cuisine of Milan, treat your kids to the amazing dessert that is gelato. Fruity flavors like lemon and strawberry are super refreshing and the chocolate is deliciously indulgent.
No matter where you find yourself in Italy, remember that it is the true home of the bambino, the little one. Italians are known for their hospitality and are very fond of children. A little bit of planning and some imagination make Italy a prime destination for toddlers and teens alike.