Beaches, Europe, Family Travel, Hiking

Some of the Best Rural Places to Visit in Italy with Kids in the Summer

August 16, 2018

Italy is one of our all-time favourite countries for summertime family travel. Apart from kid-pleasing cuisine – pasta with butter & Parmigiano-Reggiano, rainbow-hued gelato, and irresistible Italian pastries – the country’s geography is spectacular. We’ve spent the past decade exploring rural Italy from the Maremma in Southern Tuscany to the Dolomites in the country’s northeast. Within this part of the country, here are some of the best rural places to visit in Italy with kids in the summer, along with suggested activities and places to stay. This article contains three sections – Seashore for ocean lovers, Lakes focusing on the Italian Lakes, and Italy’s Dolomite Mountains. At the end of the article, you’ll find a Google Map  featuring the best rural places to visit in Italy with kids along with the nearest cities, recommended hotels, and suggested activities.


The Italian Maremma

The warm Tyrrhenian Sea (part of the Mediterranean) splashes the sun-soaked beaches of the Maremma on the western coast of Italy. The Italian Maremma is located a few hours drive north of Rome or south of Florence. If you are visiting either of these Italian cities, plan a trip to the magnificent Maremma.

Maremma beach scene summer in Italy

Here you can explore the vast Natural Park of Maremma (Parco Maremma) with its 25 kilometres of coastline, soak up the sun and Italian lifestyle at a beach club where you reserve chairs and umbrellas for the day, and wander through one of the seaside towns like Castiglione della Pescaia.

Where to Stay – Italian Maremma

Stay at L’Andana, recognized as one of the best luxury resorts in Tuscany, located 20 km from Grosseto, Italy and a few minutes outside of Castiglione della Pescaia. L’Andana offers dining options including Michelin-starred Trattoria Enrico Bartolini, an ESPA spa, outdoor pools, and a kids club.


Italian Lakes

The major Italian Lakes (Como, Maggiore, Lugano, Garda, and Iseo) are located two hours or less by car from Milan. Each lake is different, and you can’t go wrong in my opinion. The Italian Lakes are magical and one of the best rural places to visit in Italy with kids during the summer.

I recommend exploring the lake (or lakes) of your choosing from the water. Hire a private boat and driver, hop on a public ferry, or book a sightseeing tour. Bougainvillea covered estates, pastel-coloured lakefront villages, and olive groves climbing the hillsides are just a few of the highlights.

wooden boat on Lake Como Italy in the summer

After sightseeing, sip an Aperol Spritz while your kids splash around in the pool. For an unforgettable pool experience, stay at Mandarin Oriental, Lago di Como, where where the outdoor swimming pool floats in Lake Como.

Best Rural Places to visit in Italy with Kids Lake Como

At the Italian Lakes, the beach also beckons. At lakeside Castello del Sole Beach Resort on Lake Maggiore, soak up the sunshine at the private beach, cruise along the shore on an SUP, and share a family lunch at beachside Ristorante Spiaggia.

Where to Stay – Italian Lakes

On Lake Como, stay at the luxurious Mandarin Oriental Lago di Como, located only 5 km from Como. For impeccable service, extensive family offerings including Club Ragazzi kids club, and Living Circle Luxury stay at Castello del Sole Beach Resort and Spa on Lake Maggiore. Located in the Swiss part of Lake Maggiore, Castello del Sole Beach Resort and Spa isn’t in Italy, but it’s close enough!

Castello del Sole best rural places to visit in Italy with kids

Gorgeous gardens Castello del Sole Resort

Beach Castello del Sole best rural places to visit in Italy

Photo credit Castello del Sole


The Italian Dolomites

Our first Italian mountain experience with the kids inspired us to return to the Dolomites each summer. Firstly, the well-stocked alpine huts throughout the region allow for lighter daypacks. Secondly, family and stroller-friendly hiking trails cater to all ages and stages.

Dolomites best rural places to visit in Italy with kids

Finally, alpine playgrounds and themed trails keep kids smiling for miles.

Dolomites playground summer in Italy

Read more about why the Dolomites are one of the best rural places to visit in Italy with kids during the summer here.

Where to Stay – Italian Dolomites

There are many villages throughout the Italian Dolomites. We like to stay at Hotel Rosa Alpina in the pedestrian-friendly village of San Cassiano. Another favourite spot is Hotel La Perla  in Corvara, a village in the Sellaronda hiking and biking region.

Travel Tips – Best Rural Places to Visit in Italy with Kids in the Summer

  • If you are planning to visit Italy, be sure to read about the best places to visit in Italy with Kids (Urban Edition). This article includes suggested activities and places to stay in Rome, Florence, Milan, and Venice.
  • We travel through rural Italy in a rental car. The train is another option for some or all of a family trip through rural Italy. If you plan to travel by train, read these tips on family train travel in Europe.
  • These tips for hiking and biking in the Alps will help you prepare for exploring rural Italy during the summer.
  • It is often sunny in the Italian Dolomites, but this region is cooler than the Italian Lakes and Maremma. Pack layers of clothing e.g. 1/4 zips, t-shirts, and hiking pants with removable legs. Summer temperatures average 66 degrees during the day and 50 degrees at night.

Have you traveled through rural Italy with kids in the summer? I’d love to hear about your favorite rural places to visit in Italy with kids.

Photo credits Luxe Travel Family unless otherwise noted.

Some of the Best Rural Places to Visit in Italy with Kids in the Summer

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  • Reply Janice August 16, 2018 at 5:06 pm

    What a great selection of choices, further enhanced by the photos.
    Italy is a spectacular country and you have just reminded me❤️

  • Reply Leah August 19, 2018 at 1:28 am

    I actually spent part of August in Tuscany, so I agree, it’s a great place to be during the summer. Maremma is incredible and less well known than other beach destinations for foreigners in the country. And the Dolomites…just beautiful!

  • Reply Luda August 19, 2018 at 1:59 pm

    I’ve never been to Italy, but this post made me want to book a ticket ASAP. Especially the CastaDiva Resort’s pool – how cool that it’s actually part of Lake Como! Did you hire a boat to go on the lakes? It sounds like such a fun experience 🙂

  • Reply Linda August 19, 2018 at 5:27 pm

    We love to head into the countryside in Italy. I would definitely want to head back to Lake Garda and explore the Lake Como area. That pool in the lake looks perfect! We have not yet hit the Dolomites. So that is a good suggestion. Thanks!

  • Reply Amelie August 20, 2018 at 4:19 am

    Italy will always be one of my favourite places ever to visit. There are still so many regions I haven’t seen! The Dolomites are extremely high on my list, would love to go cycling there. It is just so amazingly gorgeous!

  • Reply Lisa August 20, 2018 at 7:23 am

    The outdoor pool at CastaDiva Resort and Spa looks INCREDIBLE! Love how it is practically in the middle of the lake. The Dolomites is definitely a place that I would love to visit! Loved reading this 🙂

  • Reply Punita Malhotra August 20, 2018 at 9:26 pm

    Italy is a complete destination in itself with so much variety in landscapes. We have been twice and visited over 20 places in the country but not had enough of it still. Dolomites are high on our list.

  • Reply Mansoureh Farahani August 21, 2018 at 12:43 pm

    Italy is my favorite country to travel. I feel lucky that I married an Italian Husband. I can’t agree with you more to go to the Italian lakes. There are very beautiful lakes in Italy, and Como is one of my favorite ones.

  • Reply Himanshu August 21, 2018 at 4:41 pm

    I have special affinity for rural places as they offer things in raw form. I would certainly love to visit Italian dolomites for its verdant alpine playground as I am sure every kid will have loads of smile. I can also try biking here. You have given every information worth knowing at one place.

  • Reply Kate F August 21, 2018 at 6:51 pm

    Truly awesome guide! We plan to visit Italy next year when we come back to Germany. This is a must-read post! I would also read your Urban guide to be sure Im not missing anything!

  • Reply Vicky and Buddy August 21, 2018 at 8:29 pm

    Ah Italy… One of my favorite countries in Europe and I’ve only explored a tiny portion of it. You’ve managed to see so much over the years that I’m a bit jealous! The landscape is so beautiful. I’d love to spend time in the lake areas. That floating pool at CastaDiva Resort and Spa looks amazing!

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