Tuscany with Kids

Tuscany, with its picturesque landscapes, historic towns, and rich cultural heritage, is often seen as an ideal destination for adults. However, it also offers a wealth of activities and attractions that are perfect for families with kids. From exploring medieval castles to playing on sandy beaches, Tuscany has something to delight every member of the family. This expert guide provides a comprehensive look at the best places to go, things to see, and activities to do with kids in Tuscany.

When to Go

The best time to visit Tuscany with kids is during the spring (April to June) and fall (September to October) when the weather is pleasant, and the tourist crowds are smaller. Summer (July to August) can be quite hot and crowded, but it also offers opportunities for beach activities and festivals.

Where to Stay

Tuscany offers a variety of family-friendly accommodations, including holiday villas, farmhouses, and hotels. Many accommodations provide amenities such as swimming pools, play areas, and babysitting services.

Recommended Accommodations

  • La Chiarentana: A beautiful farmhouse offering spacious grounds, perfect for kids to play.
  • Podere Il Casale: A working farm that provides an authentic Tuscan experience with opportunities to interact with animals.

Getting Around

Renting a car is the most convenient way to explore Tuscany with kids. It allows you the flexibility to visit various attractions at your own pace. Trains and buses are also available, but they may not be as convenient for families with young kids.

Hilltop Towns

Visiting Tuscany’s hilltop towns offers a mix of history, culture, and stunning views.

Montepulciano

Montepulciano is a true medieval walled city with impressive architecture and history. Highlights include:

  • Piazza Grande: The main square with historic buildings and churches.
  • Playgrounds: At the base of the town, perfect for letting kids play and unwind.

San Gimignano

Known for its 15 medieval towers, San Gimignano is a must-visit for families. The town offers:

  • Towers and Medieval Streets: Fascinating for kids interested in history.
  • Gelaterias: Some of the best ice cream in Tuscany.

Museums and Educational Activities

Tuscany’s museums and educational attractions offer interactive and engaging experiences for kids.

Museo Stibbert

Located in Florence, this museum houses an impressive collection of old weapons, armor, and costumes, which will captivate kids interested in knights and medieval history.

Museo Galileo

This science museum in Florence is perfect for aspiring scientists. It features ancient scientific instruments and interactive exhibits, including Galileo’s own fingers!

Adventure Parks

For a break from sightseeing, Tuscany’s adventure parks provide thrilling activities for kids.

Parco Avventura Il Gigante

Located north of Florence, this high ropes course in the woods offers various levels of difficulty, suitable for kids as young as three.

Zoos and Wildlife

Exploring Tuscany’s zoos can be a fun and educational experience for kids.

Zoological Garden of Pistoia

Home to more than 400 animals, this zoo near Florence includes lions, tigers, and penguins, delighting kids of all ages.

Beaches

Tuscany’s coastline features beautiful beaches perfect for a family day out.

Viareggio

This beach near Lucca offers sandy shores and family-friendly beach clubs, making it ideal for a day of sun and sand.

Marino di Campo

Located on the island of Elba, this beach provides a memorable day trip with its long sandy shores and clear waters.

Suggested 5-Day Itinerary with Kids

Day 1: Arrival and Montepulciano

  • Morning: Arrive in Tuscany and pick up your rental car.
  • Afternoon: Explore Montepulciano, visit Piazza Grande, and let the kids play at the local playground.
  • Evening: Check into your accommodation at La Chiarentana and enjoy a relaxing evening.

Day 2: San Quirico d’Orcia and Montalcino

  • Morning: Visit San Quirico d’Orcia, explore the Collegiata of the Saints Quirico and Giulitta, and stroll through the Horti Leonini gardens.
  • Afternoon: Drive to Montalcino, explore the fortress, and enjoy the views of Val d’Orcia.
  • Evening: Return to your accommodation for dinner and playtime.

Day 3: Monticchiello and Montepulciano

  • Morning: Explore the quiet town of Monticchiello, then head to Montepulciano for more sightseeing.
  • Afternoon: Picnic lunch at the park in Montepulciano, followed by an afternoon tour of the gardens at La Foce.
  • Evening: Casual dinner at Dopolavoro La Foce’s beer garden.

Day 4: Pienza and Podere Il Casale

  • Morning: Visit Pienza, explore the flat streets and shops, and watch local craftsmen.
  • Afternoon: Drive to Podere Il Casale for a farm visit and picnic lunch.
  • Evening: Return to your accommodation for family time.

Day 5: Florence and Departure

  • Morning: Visit Museo Galileo or Museo Stibbert in Florence for an educational experience.
  • Afternoon: Explore more of Florence or relax before departure.
  • Evening: Return your rental car and prepare for your journey home.

Tips for Tourists

  • Book in Advance: Reserve accommodations and attractions ahead of time, especially during peak seasons.
  • Pack Accordingly: Bring comfortable shoes, sunscreen, and hats for exploring.
  • Plan Breaks: Schedule downtime to prevent kids from getting too tired.
  • Food and Snacks: Keep snacks handy and try local foods, which are often child-friendly.

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