Milan is not the first city that springs to mind when thinking of Italy and sadly, it is often overlooked. Yes, it may not offer as much to see as Rome, but it is a vibrant city, packed with style and its own charm. And the best thing about it – you can explore Milan in 24 hours!
Duomo di Milano
Of course, you cannot miss this enormous and stunning cathedral! With its 107 m height, the gothic duomo is a must-stop when in Milan. Hovering over a large square with hundreds of tourists, the cathedral is arguably one of the most beautiful in Europe. Don’t think twice and get yourself a ticket for both the church and the rooftop. No need to say you get a fascinating 360 degree view! For about € 13 you get the chance to explore the inside of the church, the Duomo museums, the archaeological area underneath the cathedral and the terraces (by foot). Fun fact: Did you know that it took 3 centuries for it to be completed?
Galleria Vittorio Emanuele
Situated just next to the cathedral is the beautiful galleria named after king Victor Emanuele. This is actually the oldest shopping mall in the world, and probably the fanciest. It houses high-fashion stores, like Prada and so on. Don’t forget to find the mosaic bull on the floor (around the very center of the galleria) and rub your heel on him for good luck. Should you have troubles finding it, just look for people swinging around themselves!
Museum of Leonardo da Vinci
Da Vinci spent a great deal of time in Milan and you can’t find some of his works in Milan’s galleries. But right at the end of the Victor Emanuele gallery (the one leading to La Scala), you can immerse into his world. At Leonardo 3 one can get a closer look of what Leonardo’s inventions would look like if he had actually built them. With working models of his machines and digitalised restorations of his paintings, the exhibition is not to be missed!
Milan is known as one of the fashion capitals of the world. If you’re not into art, then why don’t go shopping? On via Torino, which is by the way pretty long, you can find various shops. Other elegant streets for fashion lovers are corso Buenos Aires, Venezia and corso di Porta Ticinese.
Get lost at Parco Sempione
Some 20 minutes away from the Duomo square is the Sforzesco castle. It is an art gallery with different exhibitions. At the back is Milan’s well known park – Sempione. Take a stroll down its beautiful alleys, or just enjoy a picnic! Walk to Torre Branca to get a heavenly view of Milan’s skyline. Unfortunately when I visited it was closed, so we couldn’t watch the sunset from above. The tower is situated near Arco della Pace.
Castello Sforzesco in the distance
Arco della Pace
Milan has so much more to offer!
My 24 hours consisted of visiting these places and also wandering around the city’s streets. However, it holds some more treasures for tourists. The Navigli district is known for its canals and is on my bucket list for next time. Milan is a great place for foodie lovers, too! Enjoy classic Risotto Milanese or sip on a glass of wine during happy hour. Get lost in its numerous galleries – see Leonardo’s Last Supper! Whichever you choose to do, be sure you won’t regret your stay in Milan!