Milan, Italy, is rich in more ways than one. As the country’s financial, business and fashion hub, Milan is awash in euros and has culture to spare. Even the food is richer—unique among Italian regions, the city’s food scene is butter and meat-based. No Mediterranean diet here! Bring your eating pants, because with accommodation in Milan, you’re in for a treat.
Things to Do in Milan
Milan’s major claim to fame is Leonardo da Vinci’s famous painting “The Last Supper,” which is painted in the dining room of the Santa Maria delle Grazie. But procrastinators beware: Only 25 visitors are allowed per day, and tickets sell out well in advance. If you’ve missed your window, not to worry—there’s plenty more to see from your Milan accommodation. The Milan Cathedral, which took six centuries to complete, will only need a moment to take your breath away. The Madonnina spire stretches nearly 110 m into the sky, while the intricate Gothic design and vivid stained glass provide details that go on for days.
If what you really crave is some action, go from a temple of God to a temple of football with accommodation near San Siro Stadium, where you can see champions of all types. It’s home to not one, but two Serie A football teams (AC Milan and Inter Milan), and has also played host to legendary boxing matches and world-famous musicians. Catch a concert with 50,000 other music mavens or cheer on hookers and fullbacks at a rugby match. You’re sure to have a ball at this Milan landmark.
Getting To & Around Milan
Flights to Milan will land at the international Milan-Malpensa Airport (MXP). The Malpensa Express train can take you to either Milano Centrale, north of downtown, or Milano Cadorna, near the city centre. It’s much cheaper than a cab, although once you’re in the city, taxis can be a good option to get to Milan hotels. Once you drop your bags, you’ll soon discover that one of the best ways to get around is on your own two feet. However, if you can’t walk another step, the city’s excellent public transport can take you to all the best tourist spots (plus, you should take a ride in the classic yellow streetcars just for fun!).
Best Time to Travel
Springtime in Italy is nearly perfect for Milan holidays. In April through early June, temps in the 20s mean you’ll be out and about, enjoying the pleasant climate. The weather is similar in autumn, and fashion fanatics can time their trip with the city’s most popular Fashion Week. July through early September are hot and crowded, though you might find it worth it for events like Milano Food Week and the Milano Film Festival. Winters in Milan are chilly and foggy, but temperatures typically remain above freezing, making it a good time to look for deals.
Pour yourself a glass of sforzato and relax. With Wotif’s selection of hotels in Milan, you’re sure to find your perfect villa. Then bust out your (imitation) Louis Vuitton luggage set and get ready to go cosmopolitan.
Romans to Renaissance
Modern Milan may conjure up images of fashion houses and boutiques, but if the urge to shop until you drop should desert you, it's worth remembering that the city's history, which dates back to 400 BC, is all around you. As capital of the Western Roman Empire, a medieval center of trade, and later under periods of French, Austrian, and Spanish control, Milan's history is long and varied and the city sights are a testament to its importance across the centuries.
A guided Milan city tour will take you through the city's key points of historical interest including Castello Sforzesco, a former palatial residence now open to the public as a museum and art gallery, the imposing gothic cathedral Il Duomo, and La Scala theater. The tour also takes in a viewing of Leonardo da Vinci's 'The Last Supper', viewable only by appointment and housed in the convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie.
While Milan is rich in Renaissance, Gothic, and Baroque works of art (the Brera Art Gallery alone brings together Italian masterpieces from the 14th century to the modern day), this artistic center looks towards the future and contemporary art exhibitions are held in PAC (Padiglione Arte Contemporanea) and CIMAC (Civico Museo Arte Contemporanea).
Eating and drinking
Milan has a profusion of restaurants offering cuisine from all over the world; brunch is big news in Milan and the nightlife in this eclectic city starts early, with hundreds of bars and clubs to suit every taste. The essential Milanese ritual of happy hour is a famously loosely applied term, and between the hours of 6 PM and 9.30 PM most clubs offer drinks, cocktails, and buffet food at reduced prices. The majority of clubs can be found in the Porta Romana, Porta Ticinese, and Navigli regions of the city, but excellent food and drink are never far away. Getting around Milan is easy too, with a public transport system that includes three subway lines, trains, buses, and an extensive network of trams.
Beyond the city itself, the glacial Lake Como, the third largest lake in Italy and one of the deepest in Europe, is celebrated for its beauty and tranquillity. Take a day coach tour of the lake and the historical center of Como, explore the scenery, and visit one of the many silk factories. Hide