Hello dear Reader and welcome back to my blog!
Last week I took a trip to one of Italy’s most popular destination with a close female friend. It was our first visit to the fashion capital of Italy and we were left at awe with all the wondrous sights we glimpsed on.
Milano is located in the northern part of Italy and is the capital of Lombardy. It’s the second-most populous city in Italy after Rome and is considered an alpha city with strengths in the fields of art, commerce, design, education, entertainment, finance, healthcare, media, services, research and tourism. But the city’s most common association is with fashion: as it is considered one of the world’s four fashion capitals.
Milano was made capital of the Western Roman Empire in 286 by Emperor Diocletian. In 1183 following the Peace of Constance it became a duchy but soon fell into Spanish and later Austrian possession. Following the Battle of Solferino in 1859 where French and Italian troops defeated the Austrian army the Kingdom of Italy was born (1861) with Victor Emmanuel II of Sardinia as King. The monarchy lasted until 1946 when civil discontent led an institutional referendum to abandon the monarchy and form the modern Italian Republic.
Now that we have covered some basic information about the geographical location and history of Milano let us delve into the places my friend and I visited while we were there…
Piazzale Loreto is located within the Zone 2 administrative division in the northeastern part of the city and is best known for the public display of Benito Mussolini’s corpse on 29 April 1945 as well as the execution of 15 Italian partisans on 10 August 1944. Served by metro lines 1 and 2 it is connected to the historic center and other divisions of the city. Although many well known brands are housed there it is a more quiet choice for shopping and enjoying your coffee than other shopping streets like Via Montenapoleone.
Loreto’s musts include:
- A glimpse and numerous photos of the unique architecture
- Enjoying your coffee at Saverio’s Cafe
- Trying authentic gelato ice cream at Gelateria Ottavo Senso
- Walking through the various shops either window shopping or bying souvenirs
Piazza del Duomo
Piazza del Duomo is the main piazza of Milano and marks the the center of the city, both in a geographic sense and from an artistic, cultural, and social point of view. It’s monumental buildings are perhaps the most iconic feature.
Duomo’s musts include:
- A visit at Italy’s largest church Duomo di Milano
- Window shopping at the brand shops of Galleria Vittorio Emmanuel II
- Having your lunch or dinner at Galleria’s Ristorante La Locanda Del Gatto Rosso (excellent quality with very reasonable prices)
Brera is a district within the Zone 1 administrative division. Referred to as “the milanese Montmartre” it is a neighborhood mainly associated with artists and bohemian lifestyle.
Brera’s musts include:
- Palazzo di Brera which houses the Pinacoteca di Brera, the Accademia di Belle Arti di Brera, the Biblioteca di Brera and the Botanical Gardens
Other places I visited
- Porta Venezia is a historical gate as well as the name of the surrounding district which is part of the Zone 3 of Milano’s administrative division
- Via Montenapoleone is an upscale shopping street and the most important street of Milano’s fashion district know as the Quadrilatero della moda
- Museo Civico di Storia Naturale di Milano, a museum located near Porta Venezia featuring the largest Italian collection of full size dioramas and divided in 5 different departments (Mineralogy, Paleontology, Natural History of Man, Invertebrate Zoology and Vertebrate Zoology)
All in all, Milano is the epitome of high end fashion and classical architecture while it’s friendly and flirtatious inhabitants make it a perfect place to fall in love and create unforgetable memories.