I visited Milan as a solo traveler for 3 days in October 2019 in conjunction with my trip to Amsterdam.
I stayed at the NYX Milan hotel which is chic, modern, and adjacent to Central Station (train, metro, food court, stores, and more). Even though this hotel is away from the hustle and bustle of the city center, it’s only a short metro commute away (4 stops, 6-7 minutes).
From the airport, I took the Malpensa Express train to Milan Central station. The ride took about 40-45 minutes. I also used the train to get back to the airport. Both of my tickets were purchased online and the cost was 13 euros for each ticket. To get around the city, I took the metro which was easy to navigate, very convenient, and reliable. The cost of my metro ticket (48 hour pass card) was 8,25 euros. I purchased this card at a souvenir/convenience store inside of Milan Central station.
What I did in Milan
I took a tour of the Milan Cathedral (also known as Duomo di Milano) with Veditalia tours. The tour is called “An Amazing View – Walking on the Duomo Rooftops.” Although you can visit the cathedral and rooftop on your own without a guide (for less money), I thought that having a guide was the best choice for me. Having a guide provided me with the opportunity to hear about the history, architecture, and statues of the cathedral. Milan Catedral is definitely one of the most beautiful cathedrals I have ever seen! The rooftop is truly the best part since you can capture great views of the city, statues, gargoyles, and much more that make the Milan cityscape absolutely stunning. Highly recommend!
Since I was short on time, I figured the best way to get a tour of the city would be with Veditalia’s “ Milan In One Day” 6 hour tour. Since I had already taken a tour with this company, I knew it would exceed my expectations. On this tour I saw sites such as Sforza Castle, Church of Santa Maria, The Finger statute, Da Vinci’s The Last Supper, and many more. The highlight of course for me was seeing “The Last Supper.” I literally could not believe I was standing in front of the wall where Da Vinci painted this portrait. To see it up close and in person after only reading about it in books truly made my day. Definitely recommend that you book this tour if you’re only in town for a few days, especially since tickets to “The Last Supper” can be difficult to obtain. Make it easier on yourself and book this tour well in advance of your arrival as it tends sells out.
Day Trip to Como, Bellagio, and Verana
I took a day trip to Lake Como, Bellagio, and Varenna. I found this tour through trip advisor and decided to purchase it based on the itinerary and reviews. Half of the tour was spent ride on Lake Como via a private boat to get to Bellagio and Varenna, while the other half was spent on a charter bus to get to and from the city and to Como. Plenty of time was given to explore each town, make purchases for food or souvenirs, and of course taste the best gelato in the world… only in Italy! Overall, it was a great way to spend the day. In the future, I definitely plan to return for a vacation in the Lake Region and stay in a villa.
Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II
The galleria is composed of designer stores (Prada, Versace), trendy fashion stores (i .e. Zara, H&M), restaurants, cafes, bars, shops, and a hotel . A visit to this galleria can easily turn into a full day spent shopping and eating all in one place. The ceilings and mosaic flooring are beautifully designed. Before you leave the galleria, don’t forget to take a spin on the bull’s testicles for good luck!
Language: Learn a little bit of Italian, such as basic phrases like “Ciao (hello, goodbye), Grazie (thank you), Scusami (excuse me), Buongiorno (good morning), buona notte (good night), etc.”
Food/Dessert: Manuelina (focaccia); Luini’s (Panzerotti); and Cioccolat Italiani