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Italy/Italian itinerary


Hi Lisa,
We are a family of four,two kids-13 and 9 years old, travelling to Italy in first week of May from Bangalore, India.
I need your inputs in helping me to plan our vacation.
Tentative schedule looks somewhat like this:
Bangalore to Milan -1 night
Milan to Lake Garda-1 night
Lake garda to Dolomites-1 night
Dolomites to Venice-2 nights
Venice to Florence-3 nights(visit neighbouring areas)
Florence to Assissi-3 nights(to relax in Umbria)
Assissi to Rome -4 to 5 nights
Our trip is going to be for 15 days.
We want to drive down but will leave the car in Rome.
So please let me know if the trip is doable and manageable.
We also want your advice on places to stay,B&Bs at the above mentioned places.
Please give us tips on how to travel with kids.  
Many thanks in anticipation.

Hi Aparna. I think this is a lot of moving around especially for kids. But you know your kids better than I. Perhaps you could stay two nights at Lake Garda, since it's the beginning of the trip when everyone is a bit jet lagged and sleep-deprived.

Kids are usually happiest when they're doing active pursuits, from hiking up towers, to eating gelato. They also usually enjoy some down time. Try not to plan too much. Be spontaneous based on the mood of the group. It's important to get your money's worth, but it's even more important for it to be a fun and memorable experience for the family. It helps also, if you get them involved in the planning stages. Ask them what they'd like to do or see in Italy. Ask them to do some research online. is a great place for them (and you) to start.  

Here are a few sites for keeping the kids happy in Italy:

Get some good road maps before you go. has maps online. If you want to explore an area in depth, you'll need a very detailed map that has all the smaller roads. If you want to save money, you can view maps online at http://www.mapquest or google maps, etc. Then pick up maps locally once you're there. Personally, I like to have the maps when I arrive. Having the car, it would be fun to explore some of the mountain roads or out-of-the-way places on your way to your next destination. Leaving Florence, there are beautiful roads that wind through Chianti. Stay off dirt roads. Also, on the autostrada, stay right except to pass.

As I have said in my all experts profile, I don't recommend hotels or pensions. However, I very much enjoyed the Pensione Accademia in Venice. It's in a neighborhood called Dorsoduro which is very convenient to all the sites plus the neighborhood is a little quieter. You can look for places to stay that are within your budget at sites like or This way you'll have all the latest information.

Take lots of photos! Maybe get cameras for the kids, too.

Best wishes,


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Can recommend day trips from Lucca, can give car directions from most places in Italy, and can help you plan an itinerary. But cannot recommend hotels and restaurants! For general information, hotels and restaurants, visit and


I've been to Italy many times, exploring many areas of the country. I've also traveled to Egypt, India, Nepal, Israel, Turkey, Fiji, Malaysia, and other places in Europe and the Caribbean.

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