Venice for Families
Practical advice for traveling with children in Venice
If you're visiting Venice during the warmer months, consider staying in one of the many family hotels on on the Lido. This resort island is just a few minutes from St. Mark's Square by water bus, yet it offers Adriatic beaches where you and the kids can relax when you (or they) tire of sightseeing. Campgrounds with bungalows and beach access are another possibility.
In the city proper, consider renting a vacation apartment where you and the kids can truly make yourselves at home. Our family stayed in a three-bedroom apartment with a washing machine and private garden for about the same price as a room in a three-star hotel. More recently, we've rented several apartments at competitive rates through HomeAway, which lists nearly 500 properties in Venice.
If your kids are open-minded eaters, you're in luck. Italian restaurants tend to be more child-friendly than their counterparts in Northern Europe and the U.S., and your children may find themselves being pampered by doting waiters.
Parents of fussier diners can retreat to pizzerias throughout the city. And if your kids like spaghetti, you expect to find pasta on most restaurant menus. (Menus are normally posted outside restaurants, so you can check to see if there's anything the kids will eat before you go inside.)
Ice cream--gelato in Italian--is a popular treat, especially during the summer months. Finally, North American kids with a longing for fast food should be happy at McDonald's on the Strada Nova, near the Ca' d'Oro vaporetto stop.
For more information on Venetian sustenance, see our Dining in the Veneto feature.
Nearly all museums have convenient (and clean) lavatories; in a dire emergency, buy something at a bar and hope that its WC isn't of the Turkish hole-in-the-floor variety. Better yet, know where the city's official public toilets are and consider buying the Venice Connected card, which will let you go to the head of the line.
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