After landing on our flight from New York, we had a few short hours to kill in Milan before having to catch our train to Zürich. Milan is typically known for being a smaller metropolitan city, that is mostly a hub for business and shopping. It also has a reputation for being a bit anticlimactic.
Most people say that a day or two in Milan is sufficient. We only got about three hours in the city, and I would say that you could definitely hit the major highlights in an efficiently planned day.
While I'd like to come back to the city one day to be able to explore it further, we did get a fun little glimpse. It's best shown through photos, of course, so here we go:
Little side streets all line Via Vittor Pisani, the main road you take to get from Milano Centrale to the city center.
Then you hit city center, and walk through the stunning Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II. I've never seen anything quite like this- an open space that's also enclosed.
After walking through the Galleria, you walk out the west side of the Piazza del Duomo to come across this unreal piece of architecture. It took nearly 600 years to build this cathedral, and the incredible amount of work is clear in the gothic design and scrupulous attention to detail.
A thing I would certainly warn visitors about- there are a lot of very aggressive street vendors walking around trying to trick tourists into paying for things they first claim to be free. While I've experienced this in plenty of other cities (hello, I live in New York), the guys at the Piazza del Duomo have to be some of the most aggressive I've met.
After skirting all the aggressors, we ducked into the iconic original Campari bar for a little apertivo before having to run back for our Zürich train.
Here's something we learned... neither boyfriend or I have the taste for Campari. It was a lovely experience, sitting in the Galleria with a view of the Duomo, and the bar was so charming-- but the drinks were a tough one to stomach for me. Our waiter recommended we mix one of ours with orange and another with raspberry, and yet, still... After the fact, I had friends who recommended mixing it with grapefruit, so perhaps I'll give it another try. On a day where my stomach is feeling particularly tough!
One last glimpse at the beautiful structure of the Galleria before bidding adieu to Milan... for now!