Milan Things to Do Tips by csordila
Milan Things to Do: 1,036 reviews and 2,295 photos
San Siro tram stop
The most beautiful and for me the friendliest stadium of the world was inaugurated as a gift of Mr. Pirelli for AC. Milan on 19. September 1926.
San Siro is a perfect sanctuary of the soccer, home of the teams FC. Internazionale (Nerazzurri - the Black-Blues) and AC. Milan (Rossoneri - the Red-Blacks)
The size of the playground 105x68 metres, while the stadium is fit for the reception of 85.433 visitors simultaneously. The corridor system enmeshes the two-storey building totally helping in the spectators' traffic.
The Milan arena received its name from the former legend, Giuseppe Meazza in 1990, who was playing for both team, but the fans call the stadium quite simple San Siro.
And when the hell gets away... the fanatic fans set the stadium on fire with Greek fires, the inevitable flags and banners recall the mood of the hell really. Milan is not a polite host: eighty thousand spectators bellow at every domestic goal, eighty thousand spectators sing their melodies, and eighty thousand spectators do not spare the adversary.
Address: Via Piccolomini 5 San Siro - Milano
Directions: • Subway:: MM1 line (red) LOTTO stop, then on foot along Caprilli avenue up to the stadium.
• Bus: line 78 from Via Govone to Via Lorenteggio, Via Tesio stop.
• Tram: line 16 from Piazza Fontana (Duomo) to San Siro, stop at the Via Dessiè terminal
Phone: 0039 02 45 41 23
...and the price, 700,000 Euro
If you like Ferrari then do not miss their shop in the Montenapoleone elite shopping area on Piazza Liberty. The store is in a five storey building whose interiors contain sales area and an exhibition illustrating the famous automobile maker's history.
I looked around in the store and I have to say it is very impressive. It is definitely not a two-dollar shop, it is rather a candy shop … it is difficult to walk out without buying something. The shop is designed to appeal largely to people who can’t afford a Ferrari but like the brand.
The cheapest item is a €6 ($10) sticker, but a realistic professionally assembled 1/12 scale model of the Ferrari Enzo Street 2002 is already €300 ($500).
The most expensive was a Ferrari road car with a top speed of 350kph +, 0-100kph in 3.65 seconds, 0-200kph in 9.5 seconds!!... and the price, €700,000.
It is the best place for a windows-shopping, or if you are really brave you might even buy something. I myself bought nothing, and would recommend you to take a look without buying what you do not need and do not want, simply enjoy .
Address: Piazza Liberty 8, 20121 Milan
Directions: From Duomo walk along Corso Vittorio Emanuele about 400 metres
Other Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone: +39 02 760 17 385
Entrance to the left of the church
Would you like to feel for one day like Professor Langdon from "The Da Vinci Code"? If yes, then in Milan don't miss a visit to the old Dominican monastery of Santa Maria delle Grazie where in the refectory you can admire one of the greatest frescoes of all time: Leonardo's Last Supper illustrating Christ when he predicts that one among his apostles will betray him.
The famous fresco is already the focus of mythical speculation after author Dan Brown based his fiction around the painting.
Leonardo was commissioned to execute the painting by Duke of Milan, Ludovico Sforza. He began painting in 1495 and completed it in 1498. Unfortunately, Leonardo tried a new technique here which has led to the deterioration of the painting in very short time.
Christ's feet were cut off sometime by a doorway having been opened through the painting. The last restoration, completed in 1999, was more "repainting" rather than "restoring"
Reservation to view the fresco is highly recommended, because the refectory building is so small, that only little group of tourists can go in in every 15 minute. Photo taking is not allowed.
Update 2010: Were the twelve apostles guilty of overeating at the Last Supper? Two brothers—an eating behavior expert and a religious studies scholar—are publishing findings that might make you think twice at your Easter dinner. more
Admission fee 8.00€ incl. reservation.
Open: Tues.-Sun. 8:00 am - 7:30 pm, last entry 6:45 pm.
Other: The Last Supper is not accessible from the church: the entrance is to the left of the church in Piazza Santa Maria delle Grazie.
Address: Piazza Santa Maria delle Grazie 2
Directions: Metro 1 - Conciliazione or Cadorna.
Stage plan to Zeffirelli’s Aida performance 2006
The Neoclassical building of Scala with its exceptional acoustics was the sample for many other opera houses in the world, but first of all in Italy.
Its construction as a fitting replacement for the Teatro Ducale (sadly destroyed by fire), in the late 1700s took place by the help of Empress Maria Teresa of Austria, who was also Duchess of Milan in the same time. The new Scala was inaugurated on August 3rd, 1778 with the premiere of Europa riconosciuta of Antonio Salieri.
The earlier popular Neapolitan "opera buffa" in its program replaced by Rossini's romantic operas eventually and in the first quarter of the 19th century La Scala became the traditional place of the Italian melodrama, which persists even today.
In its repertoire, however, you can find also ballet and foreign operas of composers such as Mozart, Strauss, Stravinsky, Debussy etc. with the performances of famous artists including Callas, Peggy Fonteyn or Nureyev.
The 2008 season has started at the end of October, to my biggest surprise,: the operetta par excellence, the masterwork of the Hungarian Lehár, "Die Lustige Witwe."
Try to take in a performance if you are here between the beginning of November and the end of June. Tickets are like gold dust, for a seat on the orchestra level, expect to spend a fortune, if avalable. If you can manage to get tickets, wear casual suit; you are there for glamour and you have to do your part too.
Address: Piazza della Scala
Directions: Just steps away from Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II.
After visiting the cathedral, I wanted to make a tour in the museums of the Sforza castle where the last masterpiece of Michelangelo, the unfinished Pieta Rondanini and a ceiling fresco by Leonardo, collections of antique furniture, historical musical instruments etc. can be found.
It is a very pleasant walk from Piazza Duomo to the Castle, down Via Mercanti, Piazza Cordusio and Via Dante. In Via Dante, there are many cafés that make an agreeable break for a coffee, beer, ice-cream or aperitif depending on your mood.
On arrival to the huge defense castle from the 14th Century, however, a written announcement at the entrance told me that they are sorry for it very much, but today the museums because of technical reasons cannot be visited. It was Sunday!
Because of this I was walking in the park behind the castle only, what is very pleasant place to stroll. For € 3.00 from the top of the almost 100 m high Torre Branca you can see Milan from above and take some photos.
Opening Hours Castle: every day 7am-6pm, (in winter) and 7am-7pm (in summer), free admission
Opening Hours Museums: every day 9.30am-5.30pm, closed on Mondays
Admission to the museums € 3.00 but from 4.30pm free
Address: Piazza Castello 20121 Milan
Directions: Cairoli Metro Exit (MM1, red line)
Phone: (+39) 02/88463700
Tradition says it, no building in Milan may be higher, than the statue of Mary standing on the tallest spire of Duomo. From this reason, on the roof of the 127 m tall Pirelli Tower has been built a small statue of the Virgin Mary, a gold copy overlooking to her sister, the marble Mary. So it became really true: no building in Milan is higher della Madonnina.
The tower which resembles the MetLife building in NYC very much is one of those buildings you will pass by and forget it after a couple of hundred metres past, however, it has been famous, after an aircraft hit the 25th storey on April 18, 2002. Fears of "another 11 September" were soon dispelled, when it turned out, that this was not a deliberate action, only a chance accident.
Somebody told me, for visiting the terrace on the 31st floor you have to wait for certain opportunities: the Republic Day, the feast of Grandparents, Spring Day for Europe, the White Night, and so on.
The "Pirellone" belongs no longer to Pirelli, it is now home to the head offices of Lombardy.
Address: Piazza Duca d'Aosta 3
Directions: Near Milan Central Station
...the ceiling disappears into a humid dimness
Everyone, who visits the city, should visit the Duomo, which was started to build in 1386 yet but only in the 19th century (!) won its definitive form. The last bronze door was placed in 1960(!).
This cathedral is remarkable in many ways: for its sheer size (12,000 square metres), for its intricacy, with decoration in even the most hidden parts of the roof structures, a total of 135 marble spires and 2,245 marble statues; and for the extremely long time span of its construction.
The Milanese have created a phrase "la fabbrica del Duomo" for anything taking eternity to get done.
Really cosy also inside, fifty-two columns support the interior and some beautiful coloured glass windows adorn the apse, the heights of the ceiling disappears into a humid dimness and organ music sounds meanwhile. It is the only trouble that the tourists' noise is too loud. Despite that I have been sitting there for a long time, listening to the quiet Bach music.
Visitors have the possibility of taking an elevator upward on the roof, or they can go up on stair, which means the climbing of 201 steps. If you have a fear of heights, then climbing is not for you, but if you are able, it is recommended taking the stairs. It is somehow so satisfying, to climb all the way to the top through windy narrow passageways, in order to finally be rewarded with such a magnificent view! On clear days you can enjoy the panorama of the city into the far distance.
The rooftop offers also a closer look at the ornate spires, the four-metre, gold-leaf covered statue of Mary standing on the tallest spire; you can easily spend a few hours here looking at every little detail. I have to confess, all the churches, including the unbelievable Basilica di San Marco in Venice, I visited after the Duomo, can not really compete against its splendour.
Opening hours: 9.00am to 4.45pm in winter (last entrance 4.20pm),
9.00pm to 5.45pm in summer (last entrance 5.20pm)
Entrance fee: Lift €7, stairs €4, at the Ticket Point in the opposite building.
Address: Piazza Duomo
Phone: +39 02 86463456
A speciality of Milan is the 19th century belle époque-style Galeria Vittorio Emanuele being the oldest shopping mall in the world. The four-story arcade houses shops, cafes and luxury boutiques including Louis Vuitton, Prada, Gucci; the famous but a bit pricey Ristorante Savini is placed on the second floor.
You can find also a McDonalds that seemed a bit out of place here. There is a special atmosphere due to the glass ceiling and the mosaic floor.
The symbols on the mosaic floor represent the capitals of the Kingdom of Italy in various periods: Milan, Turin, Florence and Rome.
A superstition, reported in every guides, says, the emblem of Turin brings good luck by rotating on it. Just look the others and you will see how it should be done, and remember that the rotation has to be clockwise, because otherwise the good luck becomes bad. It is funny and interesting, but I had never seen any local milanesi rotating there. It seems not to be a local, rather a touristic custom!
Above, the mosaics in the semicircular pedentives under the glass dome represent the "four corners of the earth": Europe, Asia, Africa, and America. They were originally frescoes, but were replaced in mosaic. The 24 statues in the Gallery represent Italian personalities, such as Leonardo, Michelangelo, Galilei, Volta etc.
This shopping "Mecca" has been imitated, but never duplicated. Grab yourself a strong Italian espresso coffee, enjoy the mosaic floor, the grand glass and iron dome and watch the elegantly dressed Italians pass by.
Address: Piazza Duomo-Piazza della Scala
Directions: Metro 1 & 3 - Duomo
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