Inspiration for your next holiday


Inspiration for your next holiday

Milan in 48 Hours: a 2-day itinerary and tour for 2024

Milan is a vast city with plenty of historical sites, prominent museums, and iconic neighborhoods. If you only have 48 hours to explore this city, be ready for an immersive trip into fashion, history, and glamour.

The metropolis of Milan is the Italian economic and business center, and it boasts its fame a highly modern and efficient city. You will be captured by the charm of this thriving city, able to combine innovative architecture and historical buildings to create a sophisticated environment.

Milan is the Fashion Capital of the world: stroll around the urban streets, and you will enjoy luxurious fashion boutiques for all tastes.

Milan is famous for its award-winning restaurants, as well as popular nightclubs which bring crowds on special nights. And if you are not a party animal, perhaps you could enjoy a sensational performance at an acclaimed theater such as the world-famous La Scala Opera House.

There’s something for everyone in Milan. In 48 hours you will be able to enjoy its most famous highlights and grasp a bit of its authentic soul.

Recommended 48 Hours in Milan

The following itinerary has been specifically designed for visitors new to Milan and provides an in-depth introduction to the city.

• Day 1 Morning: Brera and Duomo
• Day 1 Afternoon: Isola District
• Day 2 Morning: Risorgimento and Porta Venezia
• Day 2 Afternoon: Navigli

An interactive map for your two days in Milan is shown below. Day one is highlighted in green and day two in blue (Note: zoom in or out to see all of the points and routes)



48 Hours in Milan
Day 1 Morning – Brera and Duomo

If you are visiting Milan for the first time, you have to begin with its majestic cathedral, The Duomo: it is the largest church in Italy and it is mesmerizing to watch and visit.

From there, you can start your walking tour of the city, sauntering around the little streets of the urban center (Centro Storico) and perhaps stopping by a couple of rare fashion boutiques or luxury stores.In the heart of the city, you can admire the Palazzo Reale (former Royal Palace), the Scala Theater, and the 15th-century Castello Sforzesco.

Head also to the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, opened in 1877—is still the oldest active shopping mall in Italy.

After visiting the historical landmarks, head into the core of Brera District for a nice lunch surrounded by a glamorous vibe. Here you can find elegant restaurants to enjoy the Italian cuisine at its best.

Brera is known to be the artistic heart of Milan, and if you walk around this charming neighborhood made of cobblestone streets and unique small artisans’ workshops, you will indeed encounter the impressive Accademia di Belle Arti (Academy of Fine Arts).

Day 1 Afternoon – Isola District

After lunch, we recommend heading to Isola District to explore a different side of the city.

Recently transformed and turned into a hip & bohemian district thanks to the construction of the iconic Unicredit Tower—the tallest skyscraper in Italy—with its green residential Vertical Forest, this up-and-coming district offers you an authentic look of Milan.

Take a walk around the neighborhood and discover the perfect blend of the present, past, and future that Milan embodies. Here, you can witness trendy bars, artists’ studios, and chic boutiques created by a thriving creative community.

What used to be a neighborhood linked to illegal gambling and organized crime, is now truly a gem for anyone who wishes to uncover the real personality of the city.

Walk around this district to inhale the local and hipster vibe forged by the young generation of Milanese, and stop for a drink or dinner by one of the many hotspots of the area, perhaps even accompanied by some lovely jazz.

A night out in Colonne di S. Lorenzo & Darsena

Milan is famous for its party scene—filled with glamorous nightclubs, trendy pubs, and elegant cocktail bars—the city can provide a memorable and fun night for anyone!

If you come to Milan for 48 hours, you should include some nightlife in your itinerary, to fully live the Milan experience.

For that, we would recommend heading to Colonne S. Lorenzo & Darsena area: the very best of the authentic city nightlife.

This district is an adventurous hang out at night, packed with young locals especially during summer months, gathering and sitting around the square with music and drinks.

Come to this neighborhood for a special night with your friends and mingle with the crowd to the sound of live music—for a night you will (maybe) remember.

Day 2 Morning – Risorgimento

On your second day in Milan, we recommend something a bit quieter and more relaxing during the day, to save some energy for the evening. Perhaps for an acclaimed theater show at La Scala Theater or just a night out in one of the many trendy clubs of the city.

Start your day with a nice breakfast by one of the many delicious bakeries near Porta Venezia, and then take a relaxing walk to Giardini Pubblici Indro Montanelli—the city’s most romantic park.

Then walk to the heart of Risorgimento District—a charming neighborhood full of parks and green spaces, to impart a sense of well-being and relaxation even in such a busy city like Milan.

Walk around the neighborhood and grab a coffee by one of the many iconic cafes in Piazza Risorgimento, where you can do some people-watching of busy locals. Steps away from this square, you will find the popular "food quadrilateral", an area famous for its high concentration of restaurants, bars, and sweets boutiques.

After exploring the food quadrilateral, wander around the lovely district and stop by one of the authentic little wine bars or cute trattorie with real cuisine from Milan for a delicious lunch.

Day 2 Afternoon – Navigli

Once you’ve taken some time to inhale Risorgimento District and have had the chance to relax, slowly head to the Navigli area to enjoy a beautiful afternoon stroll, followed by the most iconic aperitifs by the canals.

On your way, you will encounter the sophisticated Porta Romana, known for high-end fashion and food stores, and a lively late-night scene.

Once you get closer to the Navigli, you will find the neoclassical landmark, Arco di Porta Ticinese, which will lead you to the entrance of the Navigli District.

This neighborhood is full of history as those charming canals were called “Water Ways“, because in the past they were the “actual roads” used for trade-in Milan, turned today into promenades for bars and restaurants.

This unique neighborhood is still able to award magic to tourists every day, and you will be enchanted by the scenic sunsets that you can experience by those canals.

Grab a cocktail—ideally the famous Negroni—and sit by one of the many bars on the banks of the canals, or even by the trendy spots serving cocktails on little boats floating on the two canals. You will have the experience of a lifetime!

After that, start bar hopping around the area, or head back to the Brera to attend shows and events. Whatever you decide to do, don’t rush your aperitif at the Navigli—it’s the most authentic experience you can have in Milan!

Alternatives to the second day

Even if you are in Milan for just 48 hours, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t venture out of the city on your second day. If you feel like you’ve already got a glimpse of the city and prefer something more naturalistic and quiet, head to Lake Como—the most glamorous lake in Italy.

Nestled in the foothills of the Alps, this colorful and picturesque lake surrounded by cute villages is the perfect escape from the metropolitan environment.

The peace and tranquility this beautiful place can offer are endless: from little gardens to enchanting villages overlooking the lake, to mountain scenic views—this paradise can offer a real vacation to anyone looking for nature, beauty, and elegance.

While it would be advised to spend a couple of days here, it is entirely possible to visit Lake Come from Milan in just one day, just hopping on a quick train from Milan Central Station.

Springtime is gorgeous in this area, filled with blooming nature and radiant panoramic views. Visit also during summer, as you will have the opportunity to enjoy more lake activities; just expect big crowds on the weekend and higher prices as the place becomes extremely popular.

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