There is no way to sugarcoat this: Staying in the city with bambini during the scorching summer months of July and August ain’t easy. It’s hot. School’s out. Even summer camp goes on vacation. Your friends and neighbors are at the beach. But fear not-all it takes is a little planning and you’ll find that there are plenty of activities in and around Florence to keep everyone in the family happy, cool and sane. Here are my top eight:
1. Archeological Nights:
Channel your inner Indiana Jones at over 100 museums, parks and archeological sites around Tuscany that will stay open into the wee hours with events, guided tours and tons of activities for kids. Le Notti dell’Archeologia runs until July 31.
Go to www.regione.toscana.it/nottidellarcheologia to download the complete calendar (in Italian).
2. Take a dip:
Get thee to one of the local pools. For a list, see the article in this issue.
3. Summer reading:
The Oblate Library in Florence and the Lazzarini in Prato offer a wealth of activities for kids in July and August. See www.bibliotecadelleoblate.it and www.bibliotecalazzerini.prato.it for more information.
4. Art meets rock:
Kids ages 6 to 12 can participate in a music/art workshop at the oh-so-chic Pecci Contemporary Art Museum in Prato while parents have an aperitif at the museum’s bar. The event takes place on Monday evenings in July from 5:30pm to 7pm. Workshops are free but you must make a reservation; call 057/4531828 or email email@example.com.
5. Theatre for kids:
In July, the parks and piazzas of Gambassi Terme and nearby Montaione will feature plays, puppet shows and workshops as part of the I Paesi di Marzapane event. Participation is free.
Call 057/1638204 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
6. Summer in the park:
Pontassieve is the place to be on Wednesday nights in July and August: there are movie nights featuring films like ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ and ‘Cars’, games, theatre workshops and more at the Fabrizio D’Andre Parco Fluviale.
Check it all out at www.estatealparco.it.
7. Soak up the air conditioning:
Let’s face it-sometimes a kid just needs a little A/C and some good quality mall time. Get your climate controlled fix at Florence’s one and only ‘centro commerciale,’ I Gigli. Parents will love the family area, complete with couches for nursing in comfort, bottle warmers, and kid-sized sinks and toilets.
See www.igigli.it for special events, directions and opening hours.
8. Take in a museum:
Kids and families interested in natural history, geology and anthropology won’t want to miss Estate al Museo sponsored by the Florence Museum of Natural History. Every Thursday from 8:30pm to 11:30pm, the network of museums offer workshops, guided visits and other special events.
See www.msn.unifi.it for a complete schedule.
Have some other great places for cooling off the kids in and around Florence? Send us a note on Facebook if you have something to add to the list!