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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As the only major U.S. airline to own a flight school, United Airlines already hit a major milestone, and now the carrier celebrates another important — and historic — step as the inaugural class of United Aviate Academy pilots graduates, leading the next generation of aviators. The 51 students in the graduating class were majority, at 80 percent, women and people of color — another stride toward United’s goal of training 5,000 new pilots by 2030 with half women or POC.
Does your road trip crew include young kids? We’ve been there, too, and know keeping everyone busy and entertained makes those long stretches of interstate much more peaceful.
In the market for new luggage? If you’re outfitting your entire family of travelers, you may want to check out some new offerings available at Target from travel brand Atlantic. Atlantic’s new line focuses on making travel more convenient with kiddos, and includes seven pieces to choose from, all made with durable, lightweight, sustainable materials (each item is made from up to 27 recycled plastic bottles).
United Airlines is in the midst of a major initiative to modernize its fleet over the next several years. After first announcing the plan in 2021, planes fitted with United’s signature interior are finally beginning to appear across the airline’s narrowbody fleet of Boeing and Airbus planes. United flyers are sure to notice these enhancements from the moment they step on board: Each new or updated plane sports remodeled seats, seatback entertainment screens for everyone, Bluetooth connectivity and more, all adding up to a better experience on every journey.
Engaging children in a family road trip can be a challenge, so parents often concentrate on keeping backseat passengers amused with games and activities. These focus their attention inside the car instead of on the places you travel.