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What to Do in Milan

Milan may not be at the top of everyone’s list when it comes to sights and attractions, but there are certainly things that will entertain and delight you if you know where to look. Here are just a few of the things you can take in while in Milan:

>> Milan is an expensive city, but if you’re on a budget here are some of the free and cheap things to do in Milan to help you make the most of your money.

  • Duomo – The city’s massive and beautiful cathedral; a visit isn’t complete without spending time on the roof, either.
  • Leonardo da Vinci’s “Last Supper” – You’ve got to buy tickets well in advance, but if you can get them you’re in for the treat of a lifetime.
  • Teatro alla Scala – One of the world’s famous opera houses; you don’t have to spend a fortune on an opera ticket to see the theatre, you can catch a glimpse of it on the tour.
  • Castello Sforzesco – This 14th-century castle is now broken up into museums, but you can wander the grounds for free.
  • Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II – It’s a shopping mall, but it’s so much more.
  • Quadrilatero d’Oro – Some of the best window-shopping anywhere, Milan’s top design houses all have shops along these streets. The people-watching is good, too.
  • Brera – A charming neighborhood near the Duomo, with lots of cafes and interesting shops.
  • Pinacoteca di Brera – Nice collection of paintings from northern Italy.
  • Parco Sempione – Behind the Castello Sforzesco, and popular with locals as an escape from the city noise and traffic.
  • Navigli – This neighborhood comes with canals designed by da Vinci, and has a thriving nightlife.
  • San Siro – The city’s football stadium hosts home soccer games for both AC Milan and Inter Milan, and also has a great museum.
  • Alfa Romeo Museum – It’s a bit outside of Milan, and it’s by appointment only, but it’s a must for any true Alfa fan.

Milan is famous for shopping and nightlife, and there’s a new blog dedicated primarily to those aspects of life in Milan – Elena’s La Bella Citta will help you find interesting shops, cafes, restaurants, clubs, and aperitivo spots like only a resident can.

If you’ve got a little more time in your Milan schedule and your eyes are starting to glaze over at all the same-old, same-old sights, check out my list of weird Milan sights, too.

And to make the most of your time in Milan, it pays to get familiar with the great Milan Metro system.

Finally, if you get tired of Milan and want a diversion outside the city, there are some easy Milan day-trips you should consider.

Like churches? Want to get off the tourist path in Milan? Check out these three great churches in Milan in which you may be the only tourist.