The next journey of my trip takes me to Milan or Milano! This will be the second time that I am back in the city in 9 years and since 2012. It is sure nice to come back and check out this unfinished place once and for all. Milan is the capital of Lombardy and the financial hub of the city. While people might always feel that it is a city more known for its shopping glamour rather than the attractions and history when compared to other cities like Rome and Florence. Often treated as the last stop during their Italian holiday and for shopping, there is still much to be discovered in this city! I will be spending 4 nights here. Check it out with me!
Milan can be a rather large city but at the very least if you are talking about the main city centre area, it is very much walkable. It is a gem to take a leisurely stroll especially when the weather is great. Most of the tourist’s attractions are certainly within walking distance. For example, a stroll from the central station to the duomo area is perhaps only 30 mins. When the weather is cooling, this is certainly very much doable.
Milan also has a very efficient and good metro system that works very well for the tourists. It is more than enough to bring tourists to any sights in the city. Clean and efficient. There are 4 lines and a single ticket’s allows you to make transfers between lines as well. You can either get single tickets or day passes which offers unlimited rides. You can get it from 1 day or 3 day passes. However, for the usual tourists, I will just recommend getting the single ticket which cost 2 Euros. You can take unlimited rides within 90 mins. If there is any complaints I had, it would be the lack of a direct metro connection to Linate Airport.
When in Milan, you certainly can’t miss out on Gallerie Vittorio Emanuele II! This, in my opinion is the most gorgeous shopping mall in the world. This is certainly not your usual neighbourhood mall and you are not gonna find the usual shops that you are used to seeing. Decked with names like Louis Vuitton, Prada, Gucci, it is a one-stop destination for shoppers. I love the architecture.
It is even more impressive given that this place have its roots since the 19th century. If you wish to, there is an Armani Hotel right here. When I was here the place is already decorated for Christmas! Check out how lovely it is!
Naviglio Grande! This is one of the must-see during my trip to Milan. I make it a point to come here after hearing so much about it and will absolutely recommend it to everyone! It is so chill here. I love the vibes! It is located towards the south of the city and you can access it easily via the Metro. Look at how gorgeous this place is!
I was here on a Sunday morning and the weather was impeccable with both locals and tourists out basking in the sun. It was amazing to get really great pictures. You can find plenty of cafes and restaurants along both sides of the canals together with music from buskers. Life simply stood still here. Naviglio Grande is also heard to be rather lovely in the evening and that is what I plan to do so the next time I am back in the city.
Columns of St Lawrence is another sight that I checked out in Milan. It is an archaeological site from roman times made with 16 marble columns. These Roman ruins are priceless. The columns are also next to Basilica San Lorenzo Maggiore.
For the history buff, when in Milan you can’t miss out on Santa Maria delle Grazie. This is the home to one of the world’s most famous paintings in the world. The Last Supper by Leonardo da Vinci. The painting also depicts one of the most important scenes in the Christianity world. I didn’t enter the church to view the painting since it is quite pricey in my opinion. Tickets cost 15 Euros. Do make plans to get tickets online as it can be rather popular.
Sforzesco Castle is another must-see in Milan and I thoroughly enjoyed it even though we came here quite late and while it is getting dark. The huge medieval fortress is in the west of the city centre and a short walk away from the Duomo area. Check out how lovely the place is! As I came right when the sun is setting, the hues of the sky were amazing.
Last but not least, Duomo! The most famous attraction in Milan. I am sure that you have heard of it! The gorgeous, impressive, white facade Gothic cathedral took over 600 years to complete. This is by far the most imposing cathedral that I have been to! Look at the architecture and the facade. How exquisite and detailed they are. Taking into account that this was done with the technology then. Great pictures can be taken from Piazza Duomo directly adjacent to it! It might take some time to get a good picture without the crowd though.
This time around, I also managed to make it inside the cathedral and to the top which is certainly a bucketlist. I will definitely recommend everyone to get tickets in advance and online since the queue might be quite long. I luck out and managed to get same-day ticket. In general, you have the option of the stairs or via lift to reach the top. The lift option cost more naturally. I felt a little scammed when in fact the lift option only takes you to the top but you still have to take the stairs down. I got the rooftop access tickets for 14 Euros. It is amazing up there. I will let the pictures do the rest of the talking.
I love Italian Cuisine! It is kinda my thing! Wine, Bread, Extra Virgin Olive Oil and tons of fresh produce. It is undoubtedly one of my favourite. I love pasta and where else to get it other than in Italy itself. I didn’t really plan to visit any special places while in town but rather was just winging it and visiting spots on a whim found on google maps. One of the places was Pasta d’Autore which as the name suggest specialised in all sorts of pasta. It is located near the Columns of St Lawrence. We got one of the speciality pasta with seafood as well as the ravioli with beef and cooked in a sage butter sauce. It was excellent. Prices are fair for Milan standards but definitely more pricey than my meals in Turin.
Another great spot that I would also really recommend is the Mercato Centrale at Central Station. It is absolutely bustling here! The concept works like a gourmet food court with numerous stalls selling all sorts of both international and Italian fare. We got a roast chicken here that was so delicious. Even if you are not hungry, it might be a good idea to take a stroll here and check out all the stuff that is on offer as well.
Another good spot is Fresco & Cimmino, despite being located in the vicinity of the Duomo, the food here is excellent and not a tourist trap! It had a great vibe and the location can’t be better, be it if you are checking out the Duomo or shopping at the Gallerie Vittorio Emanuele II just next door. I got a Carbonara that was excellent and authentic. Pecorino + Guanciale = Perfect.
Well! Being in Milan or any city in Italy! You can’t do yourself justice without having a Gelato for dessert! Actually, have a Gelato at any time of the day!
It was certainly nice to be back and this time round I even did the Duomo tour and went up to the cathedral which I didn’t have the chance to do the previous time. It is more or less complete for me in Milan and I have visited all the places that I wanted in the city. I am a huge fan of Italy and Italian cuisine. I will definitely be checking out more places and cities in Italy and given how Milan is one of the main two entryways into Italy, I am sure I will be passing by the city soon enough. Next up, it will be a brand new country for Seeing The World In Steps! Stay tuned!