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As a younger adult before I had kids, I traveled to Italy for 12 days on a group tour. I visited Rome, Florence, Venice and Pisa. It was a wonderful trip! I loved the scenery, the art, the history and the food!
There is one thing, however, that I really did not like about Italy. And that one thing keeps giving me pause about returning to Italy with my kids.
It’s the Bathroom Situation
Public bathrooms are hard to find in Italy. And when you do find them, you usually have to pay an attendant. Sometimes, you have to have exact change.
Non-public restrooms can be challenging as well. You can’t just walk into a cafe or store and ask to use the bathroom. In most places, you must buy something.
Seeking out bathrooms and making sure I had the right coins took too much brain power on my trip. Our tour guide was frequently telling us, “Now this is our last stop for three hours, so everyone go order a coffee somewhere and use their bathroom before we load up on the bus.”
I was hoping that things had improved since I visited Italy. But some quick Googling pointed me to several recent articles that still lament the bathroom situation.
Now before you assume I’m a bathroom wimp, I should point out that I’ve never had a problem with bathrooms in any other countries I’ve visited. France, the UK, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Russia…the bathrooms are more accessible and easier to find in all of those countries. The bathrooms might not be fancy, but they are easily available.
Since the lack of bathrooms was hard on me, I can’t imagine navigating the country with kids. Even though my kids are older, they still sometimes need to go on short notice.
As I think about planning our next big trip for 2023, Italy is certainly towards the top of my list. But dang, I wish the bathroom situation was easier.
Have you traveled in Italy with kids? How did you manage the bathroom ?
Nancy lives near Dallas, Texas, with her husband and three kids. Her favorite vacations include the beach, cruising and everything Disney.