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Mauritius, Indian Ocean

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Food that children will love and a bit of culture for the parents

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Fact File

    Flight time: 3 hours
    Best time to go: May-September
    Time difference: GMT +1
    Currency: Euro

    Family Hotels in Italy

    Italy is a wonderfully easy option for families. Fly straight to any number of Italian airports in three hours and head on to one of their fantastic hotel options. Italy isn’t really the ideal beach destination in Europe but if you want somewhere where you can do plenty of activities that interest you and also give the children something to join you in doing then it is a great destination. For those after an Italian seaside holiday then you need to head to the island of Sardinia which does have some beautiful beaches. As far as food goes there are few places to beat Italy for children, if your children are anything like ours pizza and pasta tops their list of favourite food so they are in heaven here. We particularly enjoyed Italy when Inca was young and we wanted an easy holiday in nice hotels where they would accept small children. The city hotels also worked well for long weekends as pushing a buggy around is very easy. Luckily the Italians love children and if you aren’t careful your baby will be whisked off you by the hotel staff who will spend the next few hours cooing over them. The hotels are ideal for a fly and flop holiday for you to be pampered in or for a bit of culture with older children.

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    Puglia, Italy

    If it is Italy you are after and you also want a beach then Puglia is the place to head. The Maizza is awash with gorgeousness. We had seen pictures of the hotel and heard good reports (including the Conde Nast Hot List) so were prepared to be disappointed if it wasn’t as beautiful as in the pictures. Thankfully it is every bit as stylish and gorgeous as we had hoped. .

    Suitable for: Children of all ages but as a quiet hotel it does suit the less 'lively'

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    Masseria Torre Mazzia

    Our rating: Scrumptious Rating explaination
    Rooms: 28
    Interleading rooms: No
    Childrens facilities:Basic
    Setting: Rural / Beach
    Style: Puglian
    Kids club: No
    Baby sitters: Yes
    Nightly rates from:
    Per Person: £157
    2 Adults & 2 children B&B: £625
    Complimentary age sharing: <2 yrs

    Puglia, Italy

    If it is Italy you are after and you also want a beach then Puglia is the place to head. And our top recommendation for a proper hideaway but one that welcomes children is the delightful Torre Cocoro. Not only is the hotel beautiful and the main pool just ideal for children but they also have a very chic beach club were you can hang out and relax whilst the children build sandcastles.

    Suitable for: Children of all ages.

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    Masseria Torre Cocoro

    Our rating: Delicious Rating explaination
    Rooms: 39
    Interleading rooms: No
    Childrens facilities:Basic
    Setting: Olive Farm
    Style: Puglian
    Kids club: No
    Baby sitters: Yes
    Nightly rates from:
    Per Person: £143
    2 Adults & 2 children B&B: £575
    Complimentary age sharing: <2 yrs

    When to Travel

    From early May to the middle of October tends to be the best time to visit.  As with all Mediterranean destinations August can be very hot and therefore probably not ideal for very young children.  May, June and September are wonderful months to visit when the days are lovely and warm and the school holiday crowds aren’t around.  The Italians take August off on holiday so the cities clear out and the shops close down.  The coast then gets very busy at this time.  Northern Italy with its lakes and mountains shares a similar climate to the South of France.  Whilst the ‘Heel’ and ‘Toe’ of Italy (Puglia and Calabria) have a much warmer climate.  If you want to go to Italy earlier in the summer then Puglia is a better bet for warmer weather than the north.

    • January - Not at its best
    • February - Not at its best
    • March - Good
    • April - Good
    • May - Best
    • June - Best
    • July - Best
    • August - Good but hot
    • September - Best
    • October - Best
    • November - Hit and miss
    • December - Not at its best


    The Italians are very family orientated and therefore extremely welcoming to children.  And as most parents would agree Italian food such as pizza and pasta are almost a staple diet for children.  Where you head in Italy really depends on the age and interests of your family.  Older children may enjoy sightseeing with their parents in Venice, Rome or Florence or exploring Tuscany and the Amalfi coast. Whilst for younger children the beaches of Puglia, Sardinia and Sicily might be more their thing.  There are a limited number 5* ‘family hotels’ which have all the bells and whistles but most hotels will happily welcome children. You just need to be aware that these hotels tend to open their restaurants after 7 pm so you need to request earlier suppers for younger families.

    Country Info


    To Milan (for the Lakes): Alitalia & BA (Heathrow), Ryanair (Standsted) Alitalia (London City) Easyjet, Monarch, Alitalia (Gatwick), Easyjet (Luton)

    Also available from: Edinburgh, East Midlands, Manchester, Glasgow, Birmingham, Bristol, Newcastle, Leeds

    To Rome (for Tuscany): BA & Easyjet (Gatwick) Alitalia & BA (Heathrow), Monarch (Luton), Ryanair (Stanstead)

    Also available from: Edinburgh, East Midlands, Manchester, Glasgow, Birmingham, Bristol, Newcastle, Leeds

    To Venice: BA & Thomson & Easyjet & Monarch (Gatwick), BA (Heathrow), Ryanair (Stanstead)

    Also available from: Edinburgh, Manchester, Glasgow, Birmingham, Bristol, Newcastle, Leeds

    To Florence (for Tuscany): Meridiana (Gatwick), Air France (London City), BMI (Edinburgh & Leeds)

    To Pisa (for Tuscany): BA & Thomson & Easyjet (Gatwick) , BA (Heathrow), Easyjet (Luton), Ryanair (Stanstead)

    Also available from: Bournemouth, East Midlands, Edinburgh, Liverpool, Manchester, Glasgow, Birmingham, Bristol, Newcastle, Leeds

    To Naples (for Amalfi Coast): BA & Thomson & Easyjet (Gatwick), Easyjet (Stanstead)

    Also available from: Birmingham, Bristol, East Midlands, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle.

    To Bari or Brindisi (for Puglia): BA & Easyjet (Gatwick) Ryanair (Stanstead)

    Where to Visit:

    The cities: Rome, Florence and Venice are all incredible destinations filled with cultural treasures and enough history to keep you all fasinated.

    The Amalfi Coast: This is one of the most famous parts of Italy with its dramatic cliffs plunging down into the sea and picturesque village literally pouring down the mountains.  Positano and Amalfi Town are the most see parts of this coast line.  Or head over to the island of Capri, in the Bay of Naples, for a few days.  For Amalfi you fly into Naples and drive the 1 ½ hours south.  For Capri the hydrofoil goes either from Naples or the town of Sorrento at the end of the Amalfi Coast.  It is worth noting that there aren’t any beaches in this area.

    Tuscany: Home to Florence and Siena this stunning part of Italy is one of the best regions to explore with chiidren in tow.  The stunning countryside is dotted with good hotels, beautiful views, great restaurants and yet you are far from the crowds that can build up on the coast in July and August.  For Tuscany you fly into either Pisa or Rome.

    Puglia: If Italy is shaped like a boot then Puglia is the heel.  This is a relatively undiscovered region of Italy or certain one Italians prefer to keep for themselves.  Unlike anywhere else in the country it is charaterised by olive farms and stunning white washed Masseria houses.  It also has some of the best beaches in Italy.  Fly into Bari or Brindii and drive 1 hour to our recommended hotels.

    Sicily & Sardinia:  These larger of the Italian islands are where the Italians head for their beach holidays

    Things to do

    Please find below a range of activities available in Italy.

    Suggested Itineraries

    We know it is often difficult, with the huge number of hotels out there, to know which one to go for, which combines with which and what sort of costs they are going to be. Here we have put together a few of our favourite options to give you a starting point. Any of these options can be changed, tweeked or added to so please do ask. The prices are per person and include international flights and private transfers. As the rates at all hotels change a great deal from their High Seasons (i.e the most popular times of the year to be there) to their Low Seasons (they often have great discounts at this time) we have based the 'From' costs on a good time of year to be in the country, the dates are included in the text at the bottom. Please do call us for a quote based on your dates.