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Kid-Friendly Things to Do in Italy’s Top Destinations

by Barbara Rogers

Aug 29, 2023

© Travnikovstudio | Dreamstime.com

Destinations / Europe

Almost anywhere you travel with your family in Italy, you’ll find things for kids to do. Sicily and Sardinia are surrounded by golden beaches, Padua has a garden maze, Turin’s Egyptian Museum is complete with real mummies and a replica Medieval village in Turin’s riverside park entertains kids with hands-on activities.


But if you are on a first trip to Italy with children, you’ll want to spend time in one or all three of its top destinations: Rome, Venice and Florence. Here are the kid-pleasers in each:


Every kid has heard of the Colosseum, and this gigantic amphitheater is bound to impress. Take a tour to see the underneath workings, where lions and gladiators were kept, and sign kids up for Gladiator School so they can learn some swordplay themselves.


In the Borghese Gardens, rent a bike or a rowboat on the lake, ride a Segway, go for pony rides or explore the zoo on a little train.


Shop for masks in the shops of San Polo and on the streets of San Marco beyond Rialto Bridge. If you reserve ahead at Ca’ Macana, near Campo San Barnaba in Dorsoduro, kids can learn how masks are made and decorate their own to take home as a souvenir.


Venice is also famous for its beautiful blown-glass art, and kids will be mesmerized watching artists on the island of Murano transform a glowing molten blob into a beautiful vase or goblet. Pretty glass beads and trinkets make inexpensive souvenirs for kids, and the vaporetto ride to the island is an adventure itself.



While the abundance of Renaissance art and architecture may soon become too much for kids, they’ll perk up when you reserve a family tour of Palazzo Vecchio. One of the choices is At Court with Donna Isabella, where a costumed lady-in-waiting brings the world of the ducal court to life. Other English language tours feature puppet shows, scavenger hunts and tour kits with activities. In a hidden costume room, kids can dress up in replicas of Renaissance clothing.


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