You’ve heard about Italy all of your life and dreamed of visiting Roman ruins, exploring centuries-old castles and swimming in the enchanting waters of the Mediterranean. You don’t need help getting excited about your upcoming trip. But is it the same for your kids?
Depending on how old your children are, they may or may not have studied Italy in school. In 2nd grade, my nephew studied world volcanoes and developed a deep interest in Etna, Sicily and southern Italy. If your children haven’t already been introduced to southern Italy through classroom lectures or school programs you can ignite that interest yourself and get them even more excited about their trip.
Here are a few tips for getting your kids excited about visiting southern Italy.
Watch Movies Set in Italy
Movies are a great way for you and your children to get a glimpse of the bel paese. Here is a list of some of my favorite movies that are set in Italy. Parental guidance may apply in some cases, depending on your child’s age and maturity.
The Lizzy McGuire Movie – Set in Rome
Sabrina Goes to Rome – Set in Rome
When in Rome – A Mary Kate and Ashley production from 1992 that is set in Rome
The Bourne Supremacy – filmed in part in Naples
Gladiator – Set in ancient Rome, filmed in Sicily
Only You – Filmed in Tuscany, Rome and the Amalfi Coast
Neapolitan Mouse-animated film from the 50s that is set in Naples
Read Books About Italy
Reading books is a great way for your kids to get excited about their upcoming trip to southern Italy. Here is a selection of juvenile and picture books that are set in Italy.
The Buried City of Pompeii
The Pirates of Pompeii
The Pompeii Pop-Up
Pompeii-Lost and Found
Pompeii – Buried Alive
You Wouldn’t Want to Live in Pompeii!: A Volcanic Eruption You’d Rather Avoid
The Last Girls of Pompeii
Pizza for the Queen
The King of Capri
Strega Nona; Her Story
The Bears Famous Invasion of Sicily
Southern Italy (in general)
Pappina a Little Italian Girl: A Story of Southern Italy
Attend a Local Italian-themed Festival
If you are lucky enough to live near a large city or area that has Italian-themed festivals, then plan a day (or weekend!) out with your kids and attend the big event. Some sites that list Italian-American festivals across the US are NIAF, About.com Guide to Italy, and Order Sons of Italy.
Go Out for Italian and Plan Your trip
If you can’t find a local Italian heritage festival to attend, then head out to your favorite Italian restaurant and have a family planning night. Carry your guide book(s), planning binder and southern Italy map and plan your vacation over some of your favorite Italian dishes.
What other tips do you have for helping kids get excited about their southern Italy vacation?
Traveling to southern Italy? Click here to see how I can help you plan your trip!