1. Look for the lions
Start by finding the stone lion in the square next to Saint Mark's. There are both winged and non-winged lions everywhere in the city, and the winged lions either have open books in their paws, for when the city was a at peace, or closed books for when the republic was at war.
2. Make venetian masks
3. Go explore Il Labirinto
4. Go watch glass blowing
5. Go to the beach
6. Go to the Rialto Markets
7. See the city from the top
It is always exciting to see a city from up high, so take the kids up the elevator to the top of the bell tower for a bird's eye view of the city. Alternatively, take the ferry across the canal to the San Giorgio Maggiore church for more spectacular views looking back across the water.
8. Go to the Peggy Guggenheim collection
9. Cruise down the Grand Canal
10. Go on a gondola ride
11. Explore the creepy rooms in Doge's palace
Consider immersing yourself in the lavish halls of Doge's palace- then taking an extended tour that will let the kids see the creepy cells beneath. This tour offers a unique insight into the medieval justice system and the life of the man who used to rule the area (although the longer tour might be a bit boring for younger children).
12. Take a picnic to Giardini Pubblici
13. Get gelato and walk along the waterfront
If you have not already had enough ice cream to last you a lifetime, you could all get gelato and wander down by the waterfront. Try somewhere like Gelateria Nico before heading along the Zattere promenade.
14. Take a ghost tour
If your kids aren't afraid of the dark, consider taking them on a watery ghost tour. Your tour guide will take your through Venice's districts on his boat and tell stories of murder and mystery, guaranteed to keep everyone on the edge of their seat! There are also different tours on foot if you prefer to walk, and both will offer a unique insight into some of Venice's darker history.
15. Keep the kids engaged with a Venetian scavenger hunt
There are many things that make Venice a unique city, so a good way to keep the kids engaged as you wander and explore this beautiful place is to make a scavenger hunt for them to tick off throughout the day. Get them to find things like the lions with closed books in their paws, a water ambulance, a bride in a gondola, a water well tucked away in the neighbourhoods, and any number of other landmarks that characterize this watery city.
16. Visit some of the outer islands
You might consider going out to some of the other islands on the Venetian Lagoon. Islands like Murano have wonderful glass blowing demonstrations, and islands like Burano and Torcello are beautiful and have a lot less crowds on them.
17. Go to Il Labirinto
If you need a break from the city centre, consider going to the Brenta Canal, where you will find the world's most difficult hedge maze. Hold on to any smaller children as it can be difficult to find them if they wander off!
Venice with children can sometimes be difficult, with strollers it is in fact sometimes difficult to move between the crowds and bridges.
The main attraction for children, present in the city is the Museum of Natural History, located at the Fondaco dei Turchi. This museum, part of the Venetian Museum Complex, has spaces especially dedicated to children, with interactive games that explain the lagoon microcosm and all its flora and fauna. It is certainly the ideal place to spend a carefree afternoon with your children!
Positive side of Venetian life is the absence of cars, children can then roam free in the many Venetian squares, where you can play with local children who usually find themselves in these areas equipped with balloons, scooters and bicycles.