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Holidays to Milan are for dusting off your finest clothing and surrounding yourself with all the Italian elegance and finery you could desire. The city’s known as the fashion capital of Italy for its fashion houses, Milan Fashion Week and stylish boutiques on every corner. Everything is done with a touch of sophistication here – the food, the ever-popular aperitivi, Michelin-starred restaurants and a growing number of ground breaking museums.
Milan’s rich history seamlessly combines with the ultra-modern - glitzy architecture which stands alongside iconic sights like the Duomo Cathedral. Couples can enjoy dipping in and out of boutiques, having fancy lunches in sun filled terrazzas, strolling through the arcaded ceilings of the Pinacoteca di Brera art gallery and admiring mind bending attractions like vertical forests. A holiday in Milan offers the perfect balance of culture and historic sights paired with classic good food and wine to satisfy all your cravings on a city break.
As the specialists in all things to do with travel around Italy, we’re here to help you discover the best of Milan, even if that means going off the tourist trails.
We’ll guide you to cafés such as Pasticceria Cova, a historic Milanese spot which has been serving cappuccinos and tiramisu under grand chandeliers for over 200 years. And if you enjoy browsing a vast selection of Italian cheeses, cured meats, olive oils and other goods, you’ll love Peck – a deli and café which has been open since 1883. Then there’s Al Fresco Restaurant, which is located in the hip Zona Tortona neighbourhood where your drink or meal is served in the romantic garden terrace.
There’s nothing quite like a walk at dusk around Navigli, Milan’s canal neighbourhood, which is dotted with relaxed aperitivo spots by the water – perfect for a sunset view with an Aperol spritz. One of the best views of the Duomo cathedral comes from the top of the Museo del Novecento, a modern art gallery. Finally, after a few days of sightseeing, you’ll be ready to head to QC Terme Milano, the open air thermal baths set within ruins.
Milan is known for its excellent shopping, and the glass covered 18th Century Galleria Vittoria Emanuele II is one experience not to be missed. Wake up early to beat the queues and climb the Gothic Duomo Cathedral, the city’s star attraction, and treat yourself to a gelato once you’re down. Make sure you set aside time to see Leonardo da Vinci’s Last Supper on our In the Footsteps of Leonardo tour, and top it all off at the illustrious La Scala Opera House.
Exploring Milan is easy, with everything within walking distance. Equally, it’s easy to explore further afield. Hop on a train at Milano Centrale and you could be strolling along the canals of Venice in two and a half hours, finding Juliet’s Balcony in Verona or relaxing at a spa resort on the shores of Lake Garda in about two hours. The pastel coloured villages of Cinque Terre are not far away either, as is the glamourous Lake Como.
Direct flights to Milan Malpensa Airport (MXP) are available from Birmingham, Edinburgh, London Gatwick, London Heathrow, London Luton, London Stansted and Manchester and take approximately 2 hours.
Direct flights to Milan Bergamo (BGY) are available from London Stansted, Bristol, Manchester, East Midlands and Belfast and take approximately 2 hours.
Milan is a year-round destination and there are benefits to travelling in every season, from the pleasant temperatures of spring and summer to the festive charms of December. There's plenty happening in this bustling city with major international events taking place throughout the year, including fashion shows, concerts, sporting events and exhibitions. If you're not planning to visit for a specific event it's worth considering being flexible with your dates as sometimes going a few days sooner or later can result in lower hotel prices.
Milan isn't typically thought of as the gastronomic capital of Italy. However, Milan's traditional cuisine has earned the city its own rights as a destination to visit for fine wine and delicious dishes. It's famed for its risotto alla Milanese, a warm, hearty dish that can be enjoyed in the winter months. Make sure you don't leave Milan without trying cotolette alla Milanese (breaded veal cutlet), either.
Today the capital of Lombardy, Milan was conquered by the Romans around the 3rd century AD and made capital of the Western Roman Empire. The empire’s commercial and banking centre, Milan was conquered and changed hands often throughout the Middle Ages, eventually joining the Kingdom of Italy in 1859, leading the nation’s industrialisation. Milan emerged as a major world fashion and design capital throughout the 20th century, with a great number of museums, theatres, cultural institutions and universities cementing the city as Italy’s commercial, industrial and financial centre.
To pre-book one of our specially selected excursions, please call our Italy Experts on 01293 762410*.