With a name like Ciao Bambino, it’s no secret we log many hours sharing not-to-be-missed insider information on how best to travel in Italy with kids. Families from around the world have been relying on our portfolio of thoroughly vetted Italy family hotels, resorts and villas for more than a dozen years now! There are a few Italy family travel tips we share continually with those who use our vacation planning service to help families create the best trip possible.
10 Top Tips for Italy with Kids
Saturday-to-Saturday stay requirement: The best family-friendly accommodations for a weeklong stay or more are either what we call “resorts” on Ciao Bambino (preferred for independent families with apartments/villas in a shared amenity setting) or independent villas (preferred for multigenerational travel). Over the summer months in particular, these accommodations are available only for Saturday to Saturday stays. Book flights accordingly!
Best family-friendly Italy itinerary: In the most popular 10- to 14-day Italy itinerary with kids, families start in Rome for four nights, spend a week in Tuscany and then end the trip with two to three nights in Venice. You can reverse this itinerary as well. Book flights into Rome and out of Venice or vice versa.
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Italy holiday favorites for Round Two: Other hotspots for family holidays in Italy include Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast, Cinque Terre and the Italian Riviera, Sardinia and Lake Como. For a second holiday in Italy after you’ve covered the must-see destinations, we love Bologna, Puglia, Umbria and the Dolomites.
We heart walking tours with kids in Italy: We absolutely recommend a kid-friendly walking tour to enrich the experience for all ages. Our Family Vacation Advisors work with a select group of tried and tested guides who understand how to engage kids of all ages, and can happily recommend them as part of our trip planning service or packaged Italy trips. Guides, however, are not inexpensive. If you choose just one guide for your trip, choose one for ancient Rome, as understanding the big picture in the most meaningful way requires additional explanation.
Immersive activities abound: In addition to walking tours, other extraordinary favorites include gladiator school in Rome, mask making in Venice and cooking classes with kids in Tuscany. Not all experiences are created equal; book these and other vetted activities through our Family Vacation Advisor team to ensure you’re getting the best quality.
Staying in the countryside? You need a car: Although the trains in Italy are a fantastic way to get between the big cities, the transport system is not as efficient for smaller towns and villages, particularly in the rural interior. When you stay in the countryside, renting a car is, more often than not, a must. See this list of expert Europe car rental tips by Auto Europe for must-read tips.
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Baby and toddler travel in Italy is delightful: Italy is a fantastic place to travel with a baby or toddler, as Italians love children and go out of their way to ensure families are comfortable. Most family hotels and resorts provide cribs (cots) and highchairs. Not all independent Italy villa rental agencies, however, provide them. Be sure and ask if this is the case for your specific unit ahead of time!
Growing list of baby equipment rental agencies in Europe: There’s a growing list of baby equipment rental companies providing everything from car seats to strollers across Europe, much more so than when I started Ciao Bambino in 2004. Be sure and Google whether you can rent instead of carry items to lighten your travel load.
Kids’ menu not needed: We don’t publish many articles about kid-friendly dining in Italy — for good reason: there are few restaurants that are NOT kid-friendly. Note, most do not offer children’s menus but will custom-make pastas on request, and, of course, pizza is everywhere.
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One thing that makes Ciao Bambino different from other family travel blogs is that we are also a Virtuoso-affiliated travel agency, with exclusive benefits to pass along to our clients. Our Family Vacation Advisors are experts at ensuring that hotels provide the best configurations and pricing, and we have an incredible resource list from our own travels, as well as the constant feedback we get from our clients who have kids of all ages. Click here to get started!