Italy Family Vacation: Best Places to Visit

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Looking for a family vacation destination that is perfect for introducing your children to another culture and instilling in them a lifelong love of travel and adventure? According to us, Italy is the perfect spot for your family trip. A family vacation in Italy is guaranteed to be chock full of culture, nature and delicious cuisine. Take your family swimming at the beautiful (and very safe) beaches of the Amalfi Coast or hiking in the gorgeous natural vistas of the Dolomites. Wherever your trip to Italy takes you and your family, you’ll be sure to create lifelong memories.

1. Rome

When you're on an Italy family vacation do visit the Spanish Steps in Rome.
Climb 138 steps of the Spanish Steps in Rome to reach the Trinita dei Monti church at the top

Rome is Italy’s gorgeous capital city and many people’s starting point when traveling to Italy with kids. The city has plenty to offer that will keep every member of your family entertained, whether you’re taking a walking tour together, enjoying a delicious gelato, or visiting the Vatican for a cultural experience. There’s something to satisfy everyone’s interest.

What to see and do: 

  • Go back in time with a guided trip to the Colosseum; there are even tours offered specifically for families. People of all ages will be stunned by the sheer scope of this ancient building.
  • Combine gorgeous panoramic views of Rome with an afternoon at the Teatrino di Pulcinella al Gianicolo to catch a puppet show.

2. Venice

The Grand Canal offers a facility of exploring the city in a gondola ride.
Taking a gondola ride in the Grand Canal is a must when in Venice and a great activity when in Italy with kids

Venice is unarguably one of the world’s most incredible cities; with its crisscrossing canal systems and gorgeous architecture, your children will feel like they’ve entered a fairytale (and you probably will too). With so much to look at, from the bridges to the boats to the street performers, no child could get bored exploring this phenomenal city.

What to see and do: 

  • Take your children on one of the city’s vaporettos. It’s a cheaper option than renting a gondola and you can have a longer ride. Line 1 will take you through the Grand Canal and show you all of the city’s main sights.
  • Enjoy a guided journey through the Doge’s Palace and Basilica San Marco, one of the best family tours of Italy. This interactive tour will show you the sparkling mosaics of the basilica and the spooky dungeons of the palace.
  • Insider tip: Hop in a water taxi and take the 20-minute-ride over to Lido, which is the perfect place to escape Venice's crowds. The island features a white sand beach, dozens of delicious restaurants and cafes, cute stores and a laid-back yet classy vibe. Lido has colourful hydrangea bushes, picturesque canals and leafy, towering trees, and those staying overnight can enjoy a more leisurely place while still having the option to take in the busy yet beautiful streets of Venice. — by Tamara Elliott from Globe Guide

3. Amalfi Coast

Amalfi Coast in Italy
The Amalfi Coast has a pleasant seaside climate even during the winter

The Amalfi Coast is the perfect place to take your Italy family vacation in the summertime. From swimming in the sparkling waters of the Tyrrhenian sea to hiking in the cliffs, if you’re looking for someplace to relax and have fun in the sun, you couldn’t choose a better location. 

What to see and do: 

  • Spend an afternoon taking a family cooking lesson! You can enjoy an outdoor pizza-making class that teaches you and your family about Italian homemade cuisine and ends with a delicious meal made by you.
  • Relax on one of the scenic beaches of the Amalfi Coast. Layout a blanket and get some sun while your kids play in the sand.

4. Tuscany

Best wineries in Tuscany comes from this far stretched vineyards
Explore the stretched out vineyards of Tuscany
 The beautiful city-scape of Sienna in Tuscany

While you may think of Tuscany simply as the land of wine and birthplace of the Renaissance (neither of which may appeal to the younger members of your family), it actually has a lot to offer families. What may interest everyone, however, is to cycle through the gorgeous hills, attend a local festival, or visit one of the many museums in the region.

What to see and do: 

  • Visit Pinocchio Park in Collodi. The beloved children’s story was written by a Tuscan writer and this unique theme park has fun family activities, whimsical sculptures and architecture, and puppet-making workshops.
  • Go dolphin watching in Viareggio. Ride out into the waters of Versilia on a catamaran to spot some dolphins in their natural habitat.

5. Pisa

Leaning tower of Pisa is a popular attraction in Italy.
Don't miss out on taking great pictures with creative poses at the Leaning tower

Pisa is a great place to bring your family. While it’s famous for the Leaning Tower, that’s not the only thing Pisa has to offer. It also has beautiful squares, the lovely Arno river and delicious local foods. This gorgeous town is perfect for a short visit or day trip.

  What to see and do: 

  • Snap quintessential photos of your family holding up the Leaning Tower of Pisa and head up to the top of the tower too (though children must be at least 8 years old to go inside).
  • Take a walk through the Giardino Scotto, a beautiful garden hidden within the walls of a medieval fortress. It includes a playground and, if you time your visit right, becomes an open air theatre in the summer!

6. Cinque Terre

Hiking in Italy via Cinque terre trail—A famously scenic trek.
Cinque Terre is an excellent choice for family hiking and walking trips

If you’re planning a family trip to Italy, you don’t want to leave out the gorgeous seaside towns of Cinque Terre. Traveling with younger kids here can be a little tricky, but it’s definitely worth it. Cinque Terre is best known for its picturesque towns and delicious food, but that doesn’t mean you can’t fill your time with activities the whole family will enjoy!

What to see and do: 

  • Hike along the path that connects all five towns of Cinque Terre. The views are stunning and it’s a great way to tire them out before a calm evening. The condition of the path changes annually and between towns, so make sure to double-check ahead of time that you’re taking the kids on a kid-friendly path.
  • If you’re wondering about Italy tours for families, take a guided tour of the bay by kayak. If you’re traveling with older kids this is a great way to get outside and see gorgeous views of Cinque Terre from the sea while having a blast!

7. Taormina

When you're a family trip to Italy, it is a must you visit Taormina.
The Greek theatre of Taormina is the second largest and the most admired theater in the world

Taormina is one of Sicily’s most popular destinations and you certainly won’t regret taking a trip here. This gorgeous seaside town combines incredible views of the sea and nearby Mount Etna with gorgeous architecture and plenty of activities for people of all ages, whether you want to hike or eat or simply enjoy some time on the beach — Taormina has you covered.

What to see and do

  • Take a Sicilian cooking class with your family. Set in a charming outdoor garden, these classes pair you with a Sicilian chef and teach you to make (and then thoroughly enjoy) local dishes.
  • Give your kids a history lesson at the ancient Greek theatre. In addition to enjoying the blast from the past, you’ll get to enjoy stunning views of Mount Etna and the Ionian Coast.

8. Lake Como

Offering spectacular scenery and charming towns, Lake Como is a must visit.
Stroll along the lake promenade and explore various religious buildings that Lake Como has to offer

No Italy family vacation could be complete without a trip to the Lombardy region. Lake Como is the third largest (and most scenic) of Italy’s Lake district. Nestled in the foothills of the Alps, this is an excellent place to bring your family for a few days to get out of the hustle and bustle of some of Italy’s larger cities.

What to see and do: 

  • Sign up for a family art class. Children from the age of one are invited to participate, where you and your spouse can set up an easel and try your hand at watercolor painting while your children are invited to do the same or make a small sculpture.
  • Rent a boat and spend an afternoon exploring the waters of Lake Como. You don’t even need a boating license!

9. Dolomites

Take to to the trails of the Dolomites during your Italy family vacation.
The Dolomites has splendid landscapes and hiking trails that are suitable for kids

Come in the winter for a snow-capped holiday or enjoy the gorgeous landscape in the summer. The Dolomites make the perfect year round family vacation spot. The stunning peaks, lush forests, and gorgeous villages will leave you and your family dreaming of coming back before you’ve even left.

What to see and do

  • Rent a toboggan and enjoy racing down the slopes in this super family-friendly environment. People of all ages will find themselves laughing until they cry as they tumble and slide down the mountain.
  • Feed a reindeer in the tiny scenic village of Dwarf. This little excursion will take you through the gorgeous landscape and give you an unforgettable hands-on encounter with Santa’s favorite animal.

10. Umbria

Known for its medieval hom towns, Umbria should be visited on a family trip
Stroll along the winding streets and the medieval village of Umbria

Umbria features gorgeous architecture, stunning natural landscapes, and a whole variety of different activities to keep your family’s minds and bodies engaged. It is the perfect central Italian region as it has so much to offer in terms of eating, hiking, and sightseeing not to mention the string of festivals that take place year-round.

 What to see and do: 

  • Umbria has different festivals each month; find one your family might like and plan your trip to attend it. Whether you want to feast on fresh truffles, listen to jazz, or try a dozen different kinds of chocolate, Umbria has a festival for you and your family.
  • Discover Assisi’s hidden tunnels and passages, climb the tower for 360-degree views, and take in Giotto’s famous frescoes in the Basilica of St. Francis.

Top tips for a family vacation

  • Book tickets ahead of time (when possible) to make sure that you’re able to do all the things you’ve planned. In places like the Leaning Tower of Pisa they sell tickets ahead of time in 30 minute increments.
  • Find activities that the whole family can enjoy, maybe that’s taking a gladiator class in Rome or swimming on the Amalfi Coast. Try to fit everyone’s interests into your trip.
  • Although you might want to pack every day full of activities, try to schedule some downtime so that everyone can recharge along the way, especially young children.
  • Be flexible. Things don’t always go as planned and sometimes you have to go with the flow, even when it’s not flowing precisely the way you planned.
  • Involve your family in the planning process so that everyone has a chance to get excited about the trip and you can make sure they’re going to enjoy the journey.
  • Always have snacks on hand. It’ll save you money and headaches.

Whether your kids are foodies, adventurers, historians or beach bums, everyone in your family will find something to love on your Italy family vacation. It is a beautiful and welcoming country with endless treasures to discover along your journey. Your family will be begging you to come back for your next vacation. If you’re not sure where to go or how to plan your trip so that everyone is happy, connect with our travel expert in Italy or check out some of our family friendly Italy tours!

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  • Matteo Piccardi
    Matteo Piccardi
    Travel Expert in Italy
  • Antonio Mauriello
    Antonio Mauriello
    Travel Expert in Italy
  • Danilo Catania
    Danilo Catania
    Travel Expert in Italy
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Antonio Mauriello Travel Expert in Italy
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