My 15 year old daughter and I are looking at the Italy tours for summer 2019, but don't just want to do Rome/Florence/Venice. Recommendations for best tour to do with my teen daughter that is not all churches? Thanks in advance!
Maybe do the trip yourself without a tour?
Italy in summer can be quite hot, especially in the south and in Rome. Maybe the Heart of Italy in 9 Days would suit you. Rome and Florence, but also "the Tuscan hill-town ambience of Volterra, the pedestrian-friendly streets of Lucca, harbor-hugging villages of the Cinque Terre."
I took the Best Of Italy tour. There were churches, but there was a lot more also. To me it was too many museums.
I second the poster who said plan your own tour. I took my then-16 year old daughter to Venice-Florence-Rome a few years ago and it was the first time in Italy for both of us and worked out fine. We did a couple of Walks of Italy tours in Rome but otherwise were on our own and had a very good time. Besides the flexibility, you have a wider choice of lodging when you are not in a group. We stayed in a couple of small B&B's that were charming.
If you don’t want to plan your own tour and would rather take an organized tour, I heartily recommend Village Italy. There are cooking classes, truffle hunts and other activities not involving churches and museums. I think your daughter would enjoy it.
I took my daughter to Italy when she was 15 years old as well for her first trip to Europe. She chose Italy. It was based on what she wanted to see versus what I wanted to see. We had the first night's reservation set only so this was in 2000 when you didn't need reservations, but nonetheless, ask your daughter what she wants to see, and then just set things up yourself. We concentrated on Florence and the Naples/Sorrento/Amalfi Coast...again, her choices. The main items on her list were Florence due to Room With a View, and Pompeii, which was her must see. I let her set the pace as teenagers have different hours. We did not do any tours, just did our own thing. I was just grateful to have my daughter to myself, well and her sister, for vacation. You'll have a great time and Italy is so easy to do on your own!
I'd recommend Village Italy. There are plenty of activities, and very few churches and museums as group activities. On the tour you'll do a truffle hunt, visit an olive oil mill, a pottery, an organic farm with hands-on cooking lesson, a historic winery (with soft drink options for non-drinkers,) a marble quarry, and much more. The teen on our tour loved it, as did everyone else.
My teens have been on 3 Rick Steves tours and enjoyed them all. They have not done Rome,Venice, Florence tour but it was part of our BOE14 tour and it did not include many churches. I might suggest coming in early to see a part of Italy before your tour so you can have the best of both worlds. If you want other younger people on the tour you can call the office & see if any other students are on a tour. My kids are fine being with all adults but it was nice to have some kids on our last tour. Enjoy
I'm curious why no one has jumped in to recommend the Rick Steves Family Tours. I am planning a trip for me and my granddaughter in 2020 when she will be 14. I'm considering the Family Tours and the BOE 14 or 21. Any thoughts?