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Northern or Southern Italy with an 8 year old?

Northern or Southern Italy with an 8 year old?

Oct 19th, 2010, 10:44 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2010
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Northern or Southern Italy with an 8 year old?

My husband, 8 yr. old son and I will be going to Italy in June of 2011 for to weeks, staying one week outside of Cortona in a rented villa with family. We are all set with plans that include relaxing and hanging out at the pool for that region. Our son has proven to be an intrepid traveler on trips to England, Caribbean and various US locales. My husband and I have traveled to Italy and have already started instilling an appreciation of the history and artwork he wills see, but are concerned as we have both experienced duomo overload on previous trips. There are fantastic things to see in Northern Italy (Pisa, Venice - wow, not sure about Lakes region for a kid), but think Southern Italy might be great too (Sicliy and Pompei...). The idea is to travel around for a week and then stay with family in Tuscany our second week. We'll fly out of Boston to either Milan or Sicily.

Has anyone traveled for a with a child of this age in either region and what recommendations do you have? Thank so much in advance.
Pilgrim5678 is offline  
Oct 19th, 2010, 10:51 AM
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I see the travel logistics more difficult in the south. Consider the Ligurian coast as your other destination and fly home from Milan.
bobthenavigator is offline  
Oct 19th, 2010, 10:52 AM
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If northern Italy means north of Rome, I think that there is more variety there than in Sicily.

The tombs in Tarquinia:


The Bomarzo garden:


in addition to the Leaning Tower, the canals of Venice, and the various hill towns.
Michael is offline  
Oct 19th, 2010, 10:56 AM
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In the past we have combines trips to Tuscany with a following week to the coastline. It is fairly easy to take the ferry over to either Sardinia or Elba. Both islands offer some of the best beaches in Europe and have stunning coastline. The Ligurian sea also has the most diverse sealife in Europe with resident whales and dolphins.

The islands offer a good contrast particularly for children. We have found that 2 weeks spent inland in Tuscany just isn't fair on our son. You can ram culture into a child under 10 but I think most of them would prefer to be on a beach.
yanumpty is offline  
Oct 19th, 2010, 11:20 AM
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All our kids prefer the south, especially Sicily. Volcanoes, ancient Greek Ruins, gorgeous views, the food, overnight ferry, hydrofoils, the catacombs in Palermo, the ghost towns, the Scala dei Turchi, the Godfather towns, the mountains, gorges, caves, marzipan, kayaking, the beaches, riding scooters around the Aeolians, and more. The also love the Bay of Naples area. We base in Sorrento and do easy day trips.
TravMimi is offline  
Oct 19th, 2010, 11:38 AM
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You need to be aware that a lot of people who will answer your post on Fodor's never travel with children. You should only take seriously the ones where people tell you they have personal experience traveling with their own school-aged children.
zeppole is offline  
Oct 19th, 2010, 12:28 PM
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Our boys (now 8 and 10) have loved every trip we've taken to Italy - Tuscany, Venice, Milan, Florence, Umbria, Rome, Sicily - so I don't think you can go wrong wherever you choose. But I would say (and they would agree) they were most captivated by Venice, Rome and Sicily.
txtree is offline  
Oct 19th, 2010, 12:34 PM
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Oops - I forgot to mention our trip last year to Le Marche. We stayed at an agriturismo - La Tavola Marche - which our boys LOVED. They took pizza making classes and picked plums by the pool, and we took a day trip to beautiful Urbino. It was fun. http://www.latavolamarche.com/

It's close to Venice, so you could fly to Venice, stay for four days, drive down through Le Marche for a couple of days, then it's an easy drive over to Cortona.
txtree is offline  
Oct 20th, 2010, 04:29 AM
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Thank you everyone, your tips and comments are appreciated.
Pilgrim5678 is offline  

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