I’m excited to share with you my Milan Italy Travel Diary!
GENERAL THINGS TO KNOW WHEN TRAVELING TO MILAN
Out of all four cities we visited on our Italy trip, I have to say that Milan was my least favorite. Mainly because it’s a modern urban city with similarities to north american living. Not that I’m complaining, just that there wasn’t much of a difference between Milan and being at home. Apart from the magnificence of the Duomo Cathedral, Milan is mainly about shopping, eating and relaxing. There is a bit of the old world charm in the architecture, but it’s not as amazing as if you were walking the narrow streets of Florence (read my Florence Travel Diary here). I think two days in Milan will give you enough time to explore the city. But if you are looking to take it easy, three days is definitely more than enough time to get your Milan fix.
GETTING AROUND MILAN
We got off the train coming in from Venice and headed straight into the Milan subway system. The transportation system in Milan is excellent. It’s a little confusing at first, but you will get the hang of it in no time. It’s always nice to have a good navigator with you, and my hubby is the best. I highly recommend using their subway system and walking. Each subway trip is $1.50 EURO. We used the taxi once to get to the airport. Each taxi trip can cost you up to $20 EURO. And if you’re looking for Uber, they only have Uber Black – not a budget friendly option. Explore on foot as much as you can to take in the city. You know you’re going to stuff yourself with pizza and pasta and coffee and croissants, so you might as well walk it off!
Make sure your electrical equipment is dual voltage. As long as your equipment is dual voltage, then you only need an adapter which only costs you a couple of dollars. Bring more than one or two. If your items are not dual voltage, I don’t recommend you bring it. Most electronics are. For me, my hair curler was the one item I really needed and so I bought a cheap one that is dual voltage. The alternatives are converters (which you can only use for short periods of time) or transformers (but are expensive and large).
If you are looking for cheap eats, pizza is your friend. We loved Spontini and Luinis – affordable and delicious!
Restaurants have a cover charge and service charge if you sit down to eat. If you are doing a sit down meal, then expect to pay at least 30 EUROS per person for a pasta and a beer/glass of wine at an average restaurant, and $75 EURO at a nicer one.
SKETCHY SCAM ARTISTS
I recommend you watch your belongings, especially if you are in the Duomo area. There will be scam artists coming up to you, trying to put bracelets on you – watch out for those guys and say NO firmly and walk away. Otherwise, once they get it on your wrist, you can’t take it off and you are going to have to donate. They may also be distracting you, so be sure your belongings are secure and you are holding on tight. If you’re wondering, my hubby carried his DSLR with him around his neck and had no issues. But you can’t be too careful so make sure you are holding onto it. Other then the Duomo/Galleria area, Milan is safe for the most part.
The key thing is to wake up early, especially if you want to grab that epic shot of you alone in the Duomo di Milano or any other location you might have in mind. We frequently woke up at 5:30am-6:00am to get ready and was out the door by 7:00am latest. You can see from my Instagram that it was worth the early wake up call.
Let the exploration begin!
Italian breakfast to go! Every morning in Milan, we grabbed our coffee and croissants. I was obsessed with Marmaletta (marmalade) croissants – soooo good!!! It’s a staple at any bakery you pass by. The other croissant is Nutella, but of course. 😉
Early bird gets the worm! Or in this case any empty shot of the Duomo di Milano. We arrived here for 7:00am!
OUTFIT: HM Floral Denim Jacket, ASOS Ridley Jeans, HM Pineapple Tee, Mode Collective Sneakers
Here is another shot of the Duomo, packed, but still beautiful!
Beside the Duomo, is one of the world’s oldest shopping malls – Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II. It’s usually packed with tourists coming through each end. But at 7:30am, this is the emptiest you will ever see it.
A comparative shot close to sunset at the Galleria. You can find all the upscale designer stores here.
Take the elevator up to the Terraces at the Duomo di Milano. It’s $13 EURO to take the elevator and $9 EURO to take the stairs.
So many beautiful photo ops at the Terraces at the Duomo di Milano! This was my favorite place to shoot in Milan. I recommend arriving at 9am when the lifts open! Once you get off the elevator, hang a right and it will take you to this beautiful area.
In the same area as the Duomo, is Spontini Pizza. You need need need to go here, especially if you are hungry. The pizza slice is fluffy bread and loads of cheese. Deeeelish! In the same area is a place called LUINI and you can buy a panzarotti for only $2 EURO!
OUTFIT: HM Floral Denim Jacket, HM Pineapple Tee
How amazing is it to find pink flamingos in Milan? I happened to see this on Instagram and needed to pop by. Except that the flamingos are behind gated walls and you are only able to take a photo of them through the fence. You can find them at VILLA INVERNIZZI.
If there is a historical arc, you know I’m there. The PORTA SEMPIONE or Arco della Pace, is a city gate of Milan and is similar to the Arc de Triomphe in Paris.
Take a stroll along Milan’s Navigli district where you will come across many restaurant bars and cafes on the canal.
We took our coffee/beer break at Sofa Cafe in the Navigli district.
Fav gelato from Cioccolati Italiani
Upscale shopping area on Via della Spiga
OUTFIT: Storets Muse Tee, Storets Vegan Leather Bomber Jacket, Zara Skirt, Zara Boots, Gucci Bag
They do poke bowls and matcha at Macha Cafe Milano.
This lovely pink building with palm trees is opposite from the front of the Duomo Di Milano and you can find more shopping down this street!
OUTFIT: Storets Off the Shoulder Top, Zara Denim Skirt, Irini Papadopoulou Bag, Mode Collective Sneakers
MORE SITES TO VISIT:
By this leg of our trip, we were feeling extra lazy and exhausted. We would have loved to explore more of these locations below, but sadly never got to it. Hopefully you can work it into your trip!
Santa Maria delle Grazie (here you will find the mural of The Last Supper by Leonardo da Vinci)
Sforza Castle (Castle built in the 15th century)
Al Fresco Milano (Modern Italian restaurant with an open airy country garden)
22 Milano (minimal aesthetic cafe)
Flower Burger (vegan burgers!)
I hope you all enjoyed my Milano Travel Diary! Next up, VENICE!
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