Top 10 activities to enjoy with children in… Florence
Take a look at our top 10 list of things to do in Florence with children, to ensure that all members of the family can equally enjoy their city break!
Museo dei Ragazzi (Children’s Museum)
This is a ‘hands-on’ museum situated in the Palazzo Vecchio, where children have the chance, amongst other things, to make their own fresco to take home with them. The museum is also home to two theatres, one aimed at children aged 3 upwards, nicknamed ‘Bia and Garcia’s storytelling room’, whilst the other is aimed at anyone aged 8 and over. Throughout the year the museum plays host to a number of hands-on workshops and it’s always possible to book an interactive tour of the museum. Actors will dress up as famous characters, such as Vasari or Galilei, literally bringing history to life in front of your little ones..
Leonardo da Vinci Museum
This is another museum that can appeal to youngsters, allowing, as it does, the opportunity for children to get hands-on with many of Leonardo’s creative ideas. The museum’s aim is to bring the famous artist’s drawings to life. The result is plenty of models all of which have moving parts that children can touch and feel.
Hop-on, hop-off bus tour
These bus tours can be found in pretty much every major city in the world
now, but remain a great option for kids. Complimentary headsets are provided so that you can enjoy listening to a running commentary along the 16-kilometre route. It’s a great way of exploring the city without having complaints of ‘tired feet’! And now, as well as the larger bus tours, there are also smaller, more personal tour options.
Climb the Duomo
With 463 steps from start to finish up steep and narrow corridors, this is perhaps not suited to very young children. However, those who do have the stamina will love the views from the top of the lantern. It’s also a great way to view Vasari’s Last Judgement up close. You will need to pre-book and get in line, as tickets are for set time slots and non-transferrable.
Whilst the grown-ups will, no doubt, enjoy the beauty and splendour of the Boboli Gardens, the younger members of the family will find it the perfect outside space to burn off some energy! With 111 acres to explore, filled with mazes, lawns, forests, paths, fountains and grottos, it can take hours to explore properly.
There are plenty of companies in central Florence offering cookery lessons, some of which are aimed exclusively at children. So, whilst the children are busy cooking up a feast, Mum and Dad can roam around the city to their heart’s content, returning back in a few hours to taste the fruits of their little one’s labours!
Some may be surprised to see the Uffizi featuring on our list of family-friendly activities in Florence; however, we think it is possible to explore the Uffizi with children in tow. But it does involve a bit of extra planning. Book in advance and employ the services of a family-friendly guide to take you round. If you explain that you have little ones, your tour guide should be able to adapt the tour to bring the works of art more to life for little minds. And don’t try to see every single room within the gallery or every single artwork. Pick and choose those that will appeal most to a younger audience.
No visit to any Italian city is complete without numerous trips to the nearest gelataria! Florence is full of the most fantastic ice cream shops and children will never tire of visiting the nearest ice cream shop!
Ride the carousel
Families will find an antique carousel in the Piazza della Repubblica all year round and it never fails to delight little ones. After enjoying a ride, why not head to the nearby toy shop – Bartolucci – where the Bartolucci family have been making Pinocchio souvenirs for generations?
Located in the hills above the city, there is plenty to entertain little ones here, including the Etruscan tombs. Believe it or not, their small size is perfect for younger family members, who can actually climb in an out. You’ll also find a Roman amphitheatre and the remains of a Roman temple and baths here.Ahead of your trip, why not read some books about Roman history with your children? There are some great reading options, i.e. the Horrible Histories series.