Italy’s best beaches for kids

October 19th, 2009 | by Ainsley |

Italy’s beautiful beaches are rightly recognised as among the most inviting in the world – indeed, this year no fewer than 113 shores and marinas were granted the prestigious blue flag award.

But a leading Italian lifestyle magazine has gone a step further and compiled a list of the country’s best beaches to take children to – with Ostuni in Puglia, San Teodoro (Sardinia) and Cefalu (Sicily) taking the top three spots.

The survey was based on a quiz of nearly 400 paediatricians and considered factors such as sandy shores devoid of rocks and pebbles; ready availability of shops, pizza restaurants and ice cream parlours; a large number of beach umbrellas; holiday accommodation within easy reach of the sea; clean water with a shallow seabed ; and adequate lifeguard supervision.

The idea behind the poll was to identify beaches that were ideal for youngsters and teenagers but which could also be enjoyed by mums and dads. Other criteria that were considered included wide open spaces ideal for kids to play; the vicinity of cultural attractions; and the absence of rowdy nightclubs.

The top 10
1. Ostuni, Puglia
2. San Teodoro, Sardinia
3. Cefalu, Sicily
4. Viareggio, Tuscany
5. Sabaudia, Lazio
6. Riccione, Emilia-Romagna
7. San Benedetto del Tronto, Le Marche
8. Lignano Sabbiadoro, Friuli-Venezia Giulia
9. Nicotera Marina, Calabria
10. Jesolo, Veneto

As an interesting aside, when parents were invited to give their views on the doctors’ choice, they ranked them: 1) Lignano Sabbiado; 2) Riccione; and 3) Jesolo, deeming the availability of recreational facilities more important than the quality of natural environment.

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