How do you Say Multisport in Italian?
“Our kids were skeptical about going to Italy. ‘It’s just a bunch of boring museums and churches and old ladies in black dresses, right?’” Mary S. laughs as she remembers her family’s initial reaction to the news that they were headed to Venice, Florence and Rome with Classic Journeys. They didn’t get far into a week of pizza making and gondola cruising and bike riding and gladiator training before they changed their tune. “Now, I think everyone in the family would tell you it was all their idea in the first place.”
That’s because this multisport family adventure includes molto activities that turn into mamma mia moments. It is such a kick to watch your kids and teens encounter Italy’s Big Three cities — and discover how much fun travel can be. If you’ve visited these cities before, get ready for your old memories to take on new meaning and to feel like you’re seeing them through fresh eyes.
It’s true that plenty of tourists spend too many hours staring at dusty statutes and earning blisters on long walks, but not when you go exploring the Classic Journeys way. Consider Venice, your first stop. Lovers of Venice fall into two camps: the ones who never want to leave and those who appreciate how the city’s small size is quite easy to cover. That’s us, and your time here is a just-right blend of mind-boggling sights, gondola rides and colorful history. Before palazzo fatigue can kick in, you’re on a high-speed train rocketing to Florence.
Firenze can be a frenzy. Many tourists think they need days in the city, but that’s because they do things like wait four hours to see Michelangelo’s David. You absolutely should see all 14 marble feet of the world’s most famous statue. But your Classic Journeys guide magically has tickets that let you skip the line — a perfect example of how low-stress a family vacation ought to be. From 23 years of traveling with kids, we know that this is the exact moment when it’s time to break out of city mode and retreat to a Tuscan village with a pool, a private park and rejuvenating globes of Chianti. The country interlude is a great way to let off steam walking in vineyards, making pizzas, biking in Siena, and ogling at the towers of famed hilltown San Gimignano.
By the time you de-train in Rome, you’ll all feel like Italian pros. You know the walks to the Colosseum and the Forum will last just long enough. The Sistine Chapel? Of course you score rare tickets in advance. While the turisti shuffle off to another monument, your family goes for a cool gladiator training session. Rome unfolds for you all without overwhelming anyone.
Italy has so much to teach an impressionable young traveler (and you, too, even if you’ve been there a dozen times). Together, you’ll get lively lessons in how to laugh together and take on fun challenges and see the world through fresh eyes. Feeling totally Italiano, you’ll learn to smile at the world rushing around you, how to live in a 500-year-old castle, and that if you can’t decide between two flavors of gelato then you must have both.
The first trip to Italy has always been a rite of passage for travelers. Chances are, you have stories to tell about yours. Five years from now — or 15 or 50 — the upcoming generations of travelers in your family will remember the first time, too. Back in Rome or Venice or Florence someday, they’ll hunt for the trattoria where you all ate too much pizza together. Even if they can’t track it down, they’ll find a new spot. And you can be pretty sure that they will clink their glasses of Chianti and thank you all over again.