Destinations Europe

A Day In Milan – Our Top 5 Places To Visit

Milan is the business heart of Italy, it is the home of the stock exchange and the centre of the Italian fashion industry. It is a working city and not a living museum such as Venice, Florence and Rome. However under Milan’s frenetic surface lies a historic, beautiful, romantic and green city.

Leonardo (da Vinci not DiCaprio) spent a number of years in Milan working as an architect and engineer as well as an artist. It is in Milan where he created one his most important masterpieces, The Last Supper.

Milan is a perfect city break and is often overlooked, it’s also very close to the beautiful Italian lakes of Lake Maggiore and Lake Como if you want to explore further afield.

Here are our 5 places we visited in Milan, you could do them in a day but allow 2 days if you want a more leisurely trip and time to enjoy a nice lunch with a glass of wine or two.

Duomo di Milano

Duomo Cathedral
The Duomo de Milano is a wonderfully grand Gothic cathedral located in the centre of Milan, you can’t miss it. Try to go to the top to really appreciate the magnificent architecture and views. It does get busy so get there early to avoid queuing in the sun.

Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II

Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II

If you are looking for a bargain or an Italian branch of Poundland then this place isn’t really for you. However, if you are looking for one of the world’s oldest and most elegant shopping malls then you will love the place. The Galleria has mosaic floors, an impressive arching glass roof and is filled with luxurious shops and cafés. All the usual suspects are here including Prada, Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Armani. Even if you haven’t got the money you can still spend an hour fantasy window shopping.

Piazza della Scala

Piazza della Scala

Piazza della Scala is a pretty little square next to the famous La Scala opera house, in the centre is a statue of Leonardo da Vinci. The exterior of the La Scala building is not particularly impressive but inside is the important part, getting tickets is very difficult at short notice.  The other buildings around the square are very elegant including the art museum which is worth a visit, the Gallerie d’Italia.

Castello Sforzeco

Milan Castle

Sforza Castle is a grand red brick building which was originally a fortress. It now is the home of several museums and large grounds. One of the museums is the Museum Rondanini Pietà which contains Michelangelo’s last sculpture. The only down side are the the hawkers which hang out at the gates trying to con people into buying so called friendship bracelets. Just ignore them and don’t let them put anything on your wrist. We still don’t understand why the police and authorities allow this nonsense in such beautiful locations.

Santa Maria delle Grazie

Santa Maria delle Grazie

Just another church in Milan. Maybe, but this church and Dominican convent got someone special in to do the interior. No not Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen but the genius, Leonardo da Vinci. In the refectory, he  painted his famous masterpiece “The Last Supper”.  You need to book tickets at least a few days in advance and you get 15mins to view the painting itself.

We hope you enjoyed our short video tour of Milan, if you want to see more of our travel videos then visit our YouTube channel.

If you have any travel tips about Milan or the nearby Italian Lakes we would really appreciate it if you added them below, thanks Mel and Marcus.

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  • Catherine Sargent
    August 30, 2016 at 5:23 pm

    Milan looks like a wonderful place to visit. It is at of the top of my bucket list of places that I want to visit.

    • Mr and Mrs W
      August 30, 2016 at 5:37 pm

      We were pleasantly surprised although a working city, it is very green and pretty. Also it’s only an hour to the Italian Lakes.

  • Stacie @ Divine Lifestyle
    August 30, 2016 at 5:37 pm

    Beautiful. Just beautiful. The next time we take a European trip, the cathedral will be my first stop.

  • Brandy
    August 30, 2016 at 5:57 pm

    That looks like such a beautiful place to visit! I can’t get over how amazing the Duomo de Milano looks!

    • Mr and Mrs W
      August 30, 2016 at 9:53 pm

      It is really impressive.

  • Lindsey Paris
    August 30, 2016 at 6:11 pm

    The duomo is exquisite. I could stare at it for hours, and longer in person.

  • Colleen Lanin
    August 30, 2016 at 7:00 pm

    I’ve always wanted to visit Milan. The architecture and the people are so wonderful! Thanks for sharing these.

  • Pam Wattenbarger
    August 30, 2016 at 8:32 pm

    Italy has been on my travel bucket list for years. There is so much to do and see, and I would love to visit Milan.

  • Kelly Hutchinson
    August 30, 2016 at 9:03 pm

    I would just love to explore Milan! I think the Sforza Castle looks like a really interesting place to visit.

    • Mr and Mrs W
      August 30, 2016 at 9:55 pm

      Milan is definitely worth a visit if you are touring Italy.

  • Chavonne Harvey
    August 30, 2016 at 10:24 pm

    Though I haven’t been to Milan, it looks like a stunning place to visit especially the Duomo de Milano. What an amazing structure.

  • Jeanine
    August 30, 2016 at 11:20 pm

    Such gorgeous photos! I have never been to Milan myself, but would love to visit if ever given the chance. It looks gorgeous and like a great place to explore.

  • Marcie W.
    August 31, 2016 at 12:43 am

    Italy currently holds the top spot on my bucket list, but I have always thought of Milan as more of an upscale fashion oriented city, which did not interest me much. Your stunning photos have totally changed my opinion and that architecture is nothing short of amazing!

  • Joyce Brewer (@MommyTalkShow)
    August 31, 2016 at 1:20 am

    Milan looks gorgeous. I’m been to Rome and Montecatini.

    • Mr and Mrs W
      September 12, 2016 at 5:24 pm

      Milan totally impressed us, and we find if we have no expectations it cannot disappoint either.

  • Melissa
    August 31, 2016 at 2:24 am

    What a magnificent bucket list vacation! Those pictures are simply stunning and make me want to book my flight and trip stat! What a wonderful itinerary!

  • Rach Ferrucci
    August 31, 2016 at 2:34 am

    My husband and I are going to Italy next year and I want to go everywhere you mentioned plus more. This made me more excited

    • Mr and Mrs W
      August 31, 2016 at 5:10 am

      Hope you have a fantastic time.

  • Liz Mays
    August 31, 2016 at 3:05 am

    Milan is so cool! The Galleria is just amazing. I would love to spend some time exploring it for the shops.

    • Mr and Mrs W
      August 31, 2016 at 5:09 am

      The shopping is great, the shops in the airport are good too.

  • Theresa
    August 31, 2016 at 3:28 am

    What a dream trip! I think Milan would be such an amazing place to spend a week or two just exploring! Great snaps!

  • Sarah Bailey
    August 31, 2016 at 11:24 am

    Wow Milan looks like such a beautiful place to go to – what an amazing trip this was for you! x

  • Kristi
    August 31, 2016 at 1:26 pm

    Beautiful architecture, you really captured some amazing things in your photos. Looks like great weather as well.

  • Brianne
    August 31, 2016 at 4:11 pm

    I’ve never been to Milan and absolutely dying to go. Your photos are beyond stunning! Wow!

  • Beeb Ashcroft
    August 31, 2016 at 7:05 pm

    I’m really jealous. This looks amazing and majestic! I’ve always wanted to go and explore Milan!

  • Crystal
    September 1, 2016 at 2:27 am

    One day! I love seeing all of your recommendations. I would love an opportunity to see The Last Supper in person, even if it is a quick trip.

    • Mr and Mrs W
      September 1, 2016 at 8:43 am

      One day is a rush, 2 would be better if you want a more relaxing pace.

  • Shell
    September 1, 2016 at 2:48 am

    Your pics are gorgeous. I would absolutely love to go to Milan!

    • Mr and Mrs W
      September 1, 2016 at 8:42 am

      Thanks, we has really good weather which helps.

  • Nikki Wayne
    September 1, 2016 at 6:37 am

    Milan looks a very nice place. I never been in an out of the country trip. this is a must-visit place.

  • Karlaroundtheworld | Karla
    September 5, 2016 at 2:03 pm

    Oh wow, those are a couple of places that I haven’t been yet. The structures are all very captivating and historically charming. Italy’s always a home for beauty!

  • Kerry Norris
    September 25, 2016 at 7:59 pm

    The piazza looks gorgeous. This is a great post as I’ll be honest and say I only associate Milan with shopping lol