Admittedly, it took Milan a while to grow on me. On first glance, I thought it was a cold, soulless place but two days later as I discovered more, I realized that you have to dig beneath the surface to get the vibe of this town. Below are few of my favorite spots in this town, some are more obvious while others are a bit more tucked away.
1. Museo del Novecento
Let’s face it, Milan’s behemoth Duomo is probably the most recognizable landmark in the city, but unless you wake up at sunrise, it will be next to impossible to get a decent shot of the cathedral without what seems to be endless hordes of tourists gathering around for the same purpose. What to do? Head over to the Museo del Novecento where not only you will get an excellent view of the Dumo but also see some really interesting art pieces.
2. Arco della Pace
I had this place high up on my list of places to see in Milan for good reason. The triumphal arch was initially built in the early nineteenth century as part of the ‘Foro Bonaparte’ – a modern version of a Roman Forum – to celebrate Napoleon’s victories. Next to it is a park where you can take a leisurely stroll even when it is cold outside.
3. Bosco Verticale
Thousands upon thousands of pictures have been shared from this place and once you see it for yourself you will know why. The Bosco Verticale, or Vertical Forest, is a pair of residential towers with a height of 111 meters and 76 meters and contain more than 900 trees (approximately 550 and 350 in the first and second towers, respectively). How cool is that!
4. Navigli Canals
This is probably my favorite area in Milan especially for a pleasant walk or to have an aperitivo Milanese. There are two canals, which are called Naviglio Grande and the Naviglio Pavese (the word Naviglio itself means the Canal in Italian). Both of them are surrounded by different types of cafés, restaurants, bars, design shops, art galleries etc.
5. Parco del Portello
Despite being in an often overlooked part of the city, Parco del Portello is a must visit if you want to appreciate how good this city is with design, including parks. In fact, here are six good reasons why you should check it out.