Milan had been a cultural and political hub of the Roman Empire in the past. Today, it still holds immense importance in terms of attracting tourists from around the world to its bustling modern-day shopping malls, old gothic cathedrals, Byzantine mosaics, and historical citadels.
Milan was my last Italian city before taking off a train to Geneva, Switzerland. After reaching Milan and visiting these 7 distinct tourist attractions mentioned below, I was dazzled by the mix of Milanese or Roman culture – the architecture influenced by it, and the modern Italian vibes mingled and entwined in all of them.
Standing in the main city square and looking at the gothic cathedral of Milan that took centuries to build was indeed enchanting in its own way. I was suddenly surrounded by two of the most revered attractions of Milan as I turned my head towards the left and saw the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II. Walking inside the Duomo was easy. And when I got in, my eyes stood wide at the spectacle ahead. I absorbed the art and the ambiance slowly and after being done with silently praising the inner workings of the intricacy of the place, I took an elevator to the top roof.
The spires looked gothic from the Piazza, but as I wandered right beside them, they revealed their true grandeur. I was honored by the presence of Madonnina sitting atop the highest spire and looking down at the moving human race below.
This museum is housed by the famous Royal Palace in the same Piazza where Duomo is located. Dedicated to the artifacts of the cathedral, it contains relics that tell us the gradual but never-ending story of the construction of it. The base stone of the museum was laid in 1953 and the idea of it was born out of the love for the architecture.
Also known as Quardilatero d’Oro, it reigns the fashion scene of Milan. Shopping here is pretty expensive, and that’s why I resorted only to window shopping. 😀 Watching all of those people springing up and down the stairs with their beautiful shopping bags indeed gave me a cause to kill some time. I was mere happy by looking at the elaborate displays of Armani, Versace, Prada, Dolce & Gabbana, Valentino, and Ferragamo.
Essentially being the oldest shopping mall of Italy and of the world, for that matter, the Galleria Vittorio Emmanuelle is not only exquisite architecturally, but it is also immaculate in terms of the fashion musketeers that it houses. Some of them that I came across were Vuitton, Prada, and Borsalino.
The vaulted ceilings and the central dome provides a vortex of meeting for the people from all walks of lives partly because of the shopping opportunities and even just merely watching people go by their daily lives.
I have always been a fan of the Neoclassical architecture and La Scala Theater let me literally touch the simplicity clad in the intricacy of it. Thanks to the architect Giuseppe Piermarini, I could sense the divine nature of one of the most visited places in Milan.
The tickets of the performances at the theater can be hard to get and I am not always in the lucky category. So, to catch a glimpse of how it feels inside the theater, I found a theater box for myself at the end of the self-tour of the museum. Just like a poor opportunist, I fanned myself like a rich local. Sigh. 😀
Containing more than 7 museums dedicated to the arts and culture of humankind from Egypt to Rome, the Sforza Castle is scenic yet educational. Built in the 1450s by Francesco Sforza, it perfectly depicts the tough times that prevailed in the 14th century and beyond. I could see the weariness on the walls of it – the walls that have witnessed several invasions, sieges, and modern wars. I was particularly intrigued by the unfinished piece of Michelangelo, The Rodanini Pieta. Like a shameless art lover, I let myself imagine all the ways in which he could complete this piece.
This church, built in the 1400s, has managed to bring the exuberance of the artifacts of the past in the form of artistic laurels to us – the modern men. One of these laurels is the famous “The Last Supper”, which was painted by favorite Leonardo da Vinci and it was particularly this painting that led me to the place. I must say, despite its 21 years long history of renovation and an age of centuries, the picture is still piercing straight in my eyes and settling in my heart.
Milan is not just a city; it is an inspiration for avid travelers like me. By visiting the above-mentioned top 7 places, I did not only have a good time, but I accumulated memories to cherish for the rest of my life.
I decided to stay at Hotel Ornato because there’s only a small difference compare to paying a bed in a hostel. I had nice room in this fabulous boutique hotel. It’s clean and the ambience is great! The staff are extra wonderful, too! The only thing that you might not like is that – it’s 30 minutes by tram to downtown Milan. If you don’t mind the commute, this hotel is perfect for you! Thirty minutes on the tram is a good way to get to know the city.
Well, you know, solo travel is not for everyone. Should you decide to go on with a tour group, go with – Intrepid Travel. They have a wide variety of tours for all ages and different kinds of travelers, including solo, seniors, teenagers and family.