Where to Get a Snack with Kids in Florence (& Take a Well-Deserved Break!)

If you’ve made it to Florence with your kids and you’ve been going full-speed-ahead, it’s time for a pausa (a break). 

I’m a mamma of three living here in Tuscany and our family spends a lot of time exploring Florence.  On hot summer days, our snack is almost always a gelato (see my list of our favorite gelaterie in Florence), but sometimes we’re looking for something else (a snack with less sugar, a sitting area, etc).  The list below includes our top spots for those moments.

You’ll surely find a perfect merenda (snack) for your kids – and you!  And, you can take a moment to rest your legs, rehydrate (or warm up if it’s chilly out), and head back out to see David, stroll over the Ponte Vecchio, and climb a tower!

Map of Where to Get a Snack with Kids in Florence

Melaleuca Firenze – Bakery with Brunch Options

This lively spot run by an Australian and Italian couple works well if you’ve got someone in your family who just want a pastry (or cookie or slice of cake), but others are craving something heartier – like an omelet. 

It’s not super spacious, but you can find a spot for a stroller and it’s loud enough that you don’t have to worry about shushing your kids.

Good To Know:  This is a good place to eat at if you’re missing avocados. 

Nearby:  Uffizi Gallery, Galileo Museum, Bardini Gardens, Piazza Santa Croce

Mama’s Bakery – For a Little Taste of Home

If you’re loving pizza, pasta, and Italian pastries like cornetti, but you’re craving a bit of home, make your way to the Oltrarno (other side of the Arno River) for a bagel with cream cheese, a cupcake(!), or a club sandwich. 

This place is really relaxed and quiet, and we love coming here to escape Florence crowds.

Good To Know:  There are indoor and outdoor seating options, so it’s a good pick rain or shine. 

Nearby: La Specola (one of our favorite museums for kids in Florence), Lilà Toys (one of our favorite toy shops in Florence), Piazza Santo Spirito, Palazzo Pitti, Boboli Gardens

Iginio Massari Firenze – A Fancy Break

This is a ‘sip-your-drink-with-your-pinky-up’ type of place, and my kids love to choose a couple of colorful bite-size cakes or sweet treats. 

There’s plenty of space for a stroller – just head to the back and the large, light-filled open seating area.

Good To Know:  This place is expensive, so don’t come here if you’re starving!

Helpful Tip:  If you and your kids love fancy sweets, you should also visit Pasticceria Dolci e Dolcezze in Piazza Beccaria.  Seating indoors is very limited, but if the weather’s nice, they put out a few tables and chairs in front – perfect for a stop with kids.  And, if someone in your group wants gelato, Gelateria de’ Medici is next door (probably my favorite place for gelato in Florence – we had it at our wedding!).

Nearby: Duomo, Giotto’s Bell Tower, Piazza della Repubblica

Shake Café – Easy and Delicious

Front area of Shake Cafe in Florence, Italy. Bar area with plants hanging from above and people working at tables and talking on either side.

There are multiple Shake Cafés scattered throughout Florence, but the one at Via Camillo Cavour 67/69r is my favorite one to visit if my kids are with me because it has a big outdoor courtyard so you don’t have to fight for a seat or struggle to maneuver with a stroller. 

Grab a fresh juice or treat from the display case (pastries, cookies, etc) or order something more substantial. 

My boys like the sandwiches here and I’m a sucker for their juices with ginger.

Good To Know:  This is an easy place to change a diaper in Florence.  There’s a changing table and the clientele here is chill so you don’t need to feel rushed.

Nearby: Accademia Gallery

Ditta Artigianale – For When Mamma Needs a Caffeine Boost

Piazza in Florence, Italy during the holiday season. Tall Christmas tree at edge of piazza next to outdoor cafe seating. Small market stall on the other side of the piazza. Multi-story buildings line the piazza. A few people walk in teh piazza.
Ditta Artigianale is the café on the right (with the white umbrellas)

Like Shake Café, there are multiple locations in Florence, and we prefer the Ditta Artigianale in the Sant’Ambrogio neighborhood.  There’s indoor and outdoor seating and plenty of room for a stroller.  The outdoor seating in front is on a charming pedestrian piazza so you don’t have to stress about constant traffic (but know that an occasional car can drive through so don’t completely let your guard down). 

Good To Know:  This isn’t a super traditional Italian café, and it gets its share of Instagrammers and people working on laptops.  So, if that’s not your thing, skip Ditta Artigianale.

Nearby: Sant’Ambrogio Market (also a great spot for a snack!), playground at Piazza Massimo d’Azeglio

Piazza della Repubblica – People Watching and Entertainment

Piazza della Repubblica in Florence, Italy. Sign and covered seating area for Gilli Cafe on the right, another seated cafe area on the left, with bicycles parked in front. Carousel in middle of piazza and plenty of people walking around.

Piazza della Repubblica is a nice spot for a break with kids because it has the historic carousel, a pedestrian area in the middle of the square, and there are often street performers and musicians entertaining crowds. 

You can grab a seat at one of the cafés lining the piazza.  They’re not inexpensive, but they’re perfect for resting tired legs and doing some people watching. 

Helpful Tip:  If you love old-style, historic bars and cafés, choose Caffè Gilli.

Nearby: Duomo, Piazza della Signoria, Palazzo Vecchio, Mercato del Porcellino, Palazzo Strozzi, Giotto’s Bell Tower

Piazza della Signoria – Preferred Chilly Weather Spot

Rivoire is the covered area on the left and Gucci is in the back with the pink flag

This is my favorite spot for a snack for kids when friends and family are visiting in the cooler months.  Why?  Because you can slurp up thick hot chocolate at Rivoire on the piazza (and take home goodies as souvenirs).

Or, head across the piazza to the Gucci Café.  Don’t worry – you can visit with kids.  We used to have our moms group meetups here with babies and strollers.  Both have outside seating and Gucci even has a nice place to change a baby.

Nearby: Palazzo Vecchio (take one of the family tours, or climb the tower if your kids are 6+), Ponte Vecchio, Uffizi Gallery, Porcellino Market, Piazza della Repubblica, Galileo Museum  

Grocery Store – Keepin’ It Simple

Grocery store deli case in Tuscany, Italy. Prosciutto legs hand from the wall and the cases hold cheese, olives, and freshly made salads. Under the prosciutto legs are shelves of cured meats.

If you want a simple snack (fruit, bread, granola bar, sandwich, chips, etc), you can bring your brood to a grocery store in Florence.  There are plenty sprinkled throughout the center (see the names below). 

Eat your snack while you walk (or sit in the stroller) or visit one of Florence’s parks, gardens, or playgrounds.  Keep in mind that you can’t sit on church steps and eat your snack – it’s not allowed.

  • Conad City, Carrefour Express, Pam Local – all small versions of main Italian grocery store chains
  • Sapori e Dintorni Conad – a step up from a ‘normal’ grocery store, with some specialty packaged items
  • Pegna – gourmet grocery store near the Duomo

Good To Know:  You can also find snacks like fruit, cheese, bread, etc at markets.  Our favorite is Sant’Ambrogio, and the Mercato Centrale is, like the name says, centrally-located.

Read more about Shopping at Supermarkets in Italy

Oblate Library – Snacks and Books

The Biblioteca delle Oblate is kind of a hidden gem for parents visiting Italy with small kids.  In the quiet building just down the street from the Duomo, you can visit the kids’ section of the library (with books in many languages), change diapers or breastfeed your baby in a calm space, and get a snack with a view of the cupola (dome) of the Duomo!

Helpful Tip:  The café is on the second floor – just ask someone for directions because it can be kind of confusing on your first visit.

Nearby: Duomo, Giotto’s Bell Tower, Leonardo da Vinci Interactive Museum

Giunti Odeon Café – Watch Cartoons After Snacktime

Inside an old cinema that's now also a bookshop in Florence, Italy. The upper tier seats are used for reading or having a snack. People browse the bookshelves on the main floor below.

I hesitated adding the Odeon Café because the highlight for kids isn’t the café – it’s the adjacent cinema and bookstore. 

The Odeon used to be just a cinema.  Now, it’s a cinema, café, and bookstore, all rolled into one. 

You can eat your snack at the café and then walk into the bookstore and cinema.  You can’t eat your snack in the upper floor seating.  The café isn’t very kid-friendly, but it could work for older kids. 

My kids love watching cartoons or films from the upper-floor seating, looking up at the gorgeous ceiling, and down at the bookshop.

Good To Know:  The railings on the upper floor (where the cinema seats are) aren’t child-proof.  I was stressed here with my toddler who wanted to hang out at the railing (which has a long drop to the first floor). 

Nearby: Piazza Strozzi (one of our favorite museums in Florence to visit with kids), Piazza della Repubblica and its carousel

A Few More Snack Options

  • get a panino – from a sandwich shop, a grocery store, or a bakery
  • enjoy a rooftop aperitivo (the main photo is my son at the Divina Terrazza RoofTop Bar on top of Grand Hotel Cavour) – this one is a little trickier because you should reserve ahead, but it can be a fun planned snack break with kids; you order drinks and you’ll get small finger foods like chips, olives, and taralli
  • have a snack at a garden café (like the Rose Garden or Boboli Gardens)

You may also want to check out
Things to Do in Florence with Kids
What To Do on a Rainy Day in Florence with Kids
Family Day Trips from Florence
Where to Find the Best Views of Florence
How to Beat the Heat in Florence

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