No matter what age you are, Italy is a great country to visit. With its wonderful Mediterranean climate and rich history, the country draws millions of tourists to its shores each year. Leafcanoer, Helen, recently visited Italy with her family, and shared her experiences in her leaf titled, “7 days in Italy.”
As many travelers to Italy can attest, it’s easy to find family friendly Italy activities to suit kids and adults alike. Here is a list of 15 activities that will suit travelers of all ages:
Learn about ancient Rome at the Pantheon
The Pantheon is one of the best-preserved ancient Roman buildings in the world. Once used as a temple for the gods, it is now used as a church dedicated to St. Mary and the Martyrs.
Pretend to be gladiators at the Colosseum
The Colosseum is an amphitheater in Rome, created in 80 AD. This ancient structure, with the capacity to hold 50,000 to 80,000 spectators, was used for gladiatorial contests, public spectacles, and dramatic performances.
Visit a Roman Ruin
Besides the Colosseum and the Pantheon, there are plenty of other ancient sites spread throughout Rome worth visiting. The city is littered with ruins tucked away amidst modern buildings. These sites include the Roman Forum, the Palatine Hill, and the Piazza Navona.
Visit the Aqueduct archaeology site
Another fun activity to do to learn about Roman history is to visit the archaeological site of the Roman Aqueducts. The aqueducts was a system developed by the Romans to distribute water from distant sources to supply the city’s public baths, latrines, and fountains.
Climb the Leaning Tower
The Tower of Pisa is a popular spot for tourists. The tower’s famous lean is due to an inadequate foundation built on ground that was too soft to support such a massive structure.
Appreciate Italian architecture
From ancient Roman ruins to Renaissance era churches, Italy has an abundance of beautiful buildings to see and appreciate. In fact, much of the world’s architecture has been greatly influenced by Italian architecture.
Visit a castle
There are a number of castles that can be found in Italy. One such castle is Castel Sant’ Angelo in Rome, which sits on the banks of the Tiber river, and contains a tomb for the Roman emporer, Hadrian.
Visit St. Peter’s Basilica
One of the most famous and beautiful churches in Rome is St. Peter’s Basilica. This church, built during the late Renaissance, is considered to be one of the holiest Catholic shrines in the world.
Hang out at San Marco Square
The Piazza San Marco is the main public square in Venice. This square, along with the Piazzetta (“little Piazza”), forms the social, religious, and political center of Venice.
Eat Italian food
Italy is known for its food. From pizza to pasta, and gelato to espresso, Italian cuisine has made its mark in global cuisine. Italy is full of small mom and pop restaurants worth stopping by for a bite to eat.
Shop at a farmer’s market
Part of what makes Italian food so great are its ingredients, which can be purchased at farmer’s markets throughout the country. Markets worth visiting include the Rialto Fish Market in Venice, the Piazza Campo del Palio in Asti, the Piazza delle Erbe and Piazze della Frutta in Padua, and the Mercato Centrale in Bologna.
Ride the “Hop On Hop Off” bus in Rome
If you’re visiting Rome, a great introduction to the city’s historical sites is to catch a ride on the “Hop On Hop Off” Double Decker bus. It provides a wonderful opportunity for a rest (which is very important when traveling with kids), while still giving you a chance to see the sites.
Ride a gondola
For travelers to Venice, a must-do activity is to ride the famous gondolas throughout the canals. Rides on the gondolas can get quite expensive, though. For a more affordable option, you can ride one of the vaporettos, also known as water taxis, to explore the canals.
Learn about glass blowing at Murano
A popular island near the city of Venice is the island of Murano, known for its glass blowing. Murano glass is famous for its beauty, and the various types of glass originating from this island include crystalline glass, enameled glass, glass with threads of gold, multicolored glass, milk glass, and imitation gemstones made of glass.
Check out the colorful houses on Burano
Another Venetian island worth visiting is Burano, with its colorful houses. The island’s housing colors are closely regulated by the local government, and home owners must receive approval to paint their homes a different color.
Italy is full of fun and interesting activities for travelers of all ages. For more travel ideas and inspiration, download the Leaf Canoe app.