10 Tips for Cycling Holidays with Kids
Here are our recommendations for stress-free cycling holidays with kids in France and Italy.Read more
Italy is one of our favourite places for family cycling holidays. This beautiful country has so much to offer, from rich food, to rich history, to a rich culture. You can rest assured that there’s something for every member of the family in Italy. Children and parents will delight in the vibrant tales told of Italian history and Roman mythology, cycling amongst some of the most beautiful locations in Europe. Cycling with the family here is perfect for those who are looking for an adventure where everyone is together. Of course, the Italian gelato is the most important reason why Italy is fantastic for family cycling holidays; it’s the perfect post-cycle reward.
You might immediately think of Rome or perhaps Florence when holidays to Italy are discussed, but there are so many gorgeous regions that this country has to offer. We’ve found that avoiding the crowds makes cycling holidays more enjoyable, and you’re more likely to have an authentic Italian experience this way. But that's not to say these regions aren't popular. Here’s our list of the best places to go on family cycling holidays in Italy.
One of the most picture-perfect regions of Italy, Campagnia & Amalfi will charm the whole family on cycling holidays. Be enchanted by this famous coastline, seen on many a postcard. The painted houses in vivid colours that hug the seaside hills are breathtaking to see, especially when you crest a hill you’ve cycled. We recommend a boat trip to fully see the beauty of these seaside towns. The Amalfi countryside has been maintained and manicured for thousands of years, creating a beautiful landscape of hills lined with cypress trees standing guard and gentle paths perfumed by lemon blossoms. Cycling holidays in this part of Italy will enchant the whole family.
It’s not just the beauty of this region that attracts so many families, as the Campagnian cuisine is world-class. Dishes often seen on the back of children’s menus in the UK are front and centre here, with some of the most delicious pasta and pizza in the Mediterranean. When planning family cycling holidays in Italy, you’ll never have to worry about fussy eaters. For parents, the regional favourite is the Parmigiana Melanzane, a dish of aubergines, tomato, basil and mozzarella that even adventurous kids will love.
Whilst on a cycling holiday here, the Cilento National Park is a must-see. The cycle routes are shaded by olive groves, meaning the little ones won’t be directly in the sun all day. One of the most stunning parts of the park are the many coastal viewpoints and Mediterranean maquis. The ancient Greek ruins of the city of Paestum also lie in this park, offering a window into the past that is sure to spark the imagination of the whole family.
Described by many as a delight for food enthusiasts, this north-eastern region of Italy is perfect for family cycling holidays. It was in Emilia Romagna in fact that Prosciutto di Parma, Parmigiana Reggiano, balsamic vinegar and tortellini were first created, and are commonly thought of today as Italy’s largest culinary contributions. Any fussy eater taken to Emilia Romagna will return a food connoisseur. One of the reasons why this region is perfect for family cycling holidays in Italy is the variety of activities to enjoy. The cycle lanes, though challenging at times, provide a feeling of great accomplishment. All Emilia Romagna tours are also Self Guided, meaning you can cycle at your own pace that suits your family best.
The many markets and delicatessens in this corner of Italy show the very best of Italian produce. The freshest tomatoes and most vibrant cheeses you’ll find are hidden amongst markets such as these. When cycling to towns such as Parma or Modena, the culture and pride surrounding their delicious food is palpable, where you’ll find they’re just as enthusiastic as you are to taste what’s on offer. These towns also have magnificent architecture that will inspire the whole family, with charming fountains and ancient towers, it’s truly a land of fairy tales.
If for an evening, you wish to venture out without the kids, Parma has some excellent operas to indulge your musical senses with, as well as some of the most luxurious fine dining in Italy. Something the whole family will love however is the shopping in Emilia Romagna. With an endless choice of souvenirs for the kids to show their friends, and the countless jewellery and shoe shops, this is one of the best places for family cycling holidays in Italy.
One of Italy’s best-kept secrets, the so-called ‘boot’ (thanks to its shape on the map) has an incredibly rich and long history that includes periods influenced by the ancient Greeks, Romans, Byzantines and the Spanish. Family cycling holidays to Puglia are perfect for escaping the crowds that Italy can draw. Cycling here is best suited to families with slightly older children, as it can be quite active for the little ones. Truly a hidden gem, this region has much to show.
Bathed in sunlight and laced with vineyards, this region has some of the most delicious wines for you to taste. In particular, you’ll find a vast array of sumptuous reds to have at dinner; a special treat for you parents. These wines are usually full-bodied, produced from local reds like Primitivo and Negroamaro, ‘black bitter’ in Italian. The food of this region is incredibly varied, thanks in part to all the changing influences on Puglia throughout the centuries. With a varied menu, there’s something for everyone in the family.
Puglia is home to many UNESCO World heritage sites that will inspire you and the family. Matera and its Sassi caves were in fact the European Capital of Culture in 2019. Here you will also find the iconic Trulli houses that Puglia is famous for. The secret coves and crystal clear waters of Puglia are another reason why it’s one of the best family cycling holidays in Italy.
For more recommendations on the best destinations for family cycling holidays in Italy, give us a call on 020 7471 7760, or alternatively, view our Italian cycle tours here
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