Fun things to do in Milan

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Most Viewed Things to Do in Milan

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    Teatro degli Arcimboldi Milano (TAM)

    by Nemorino Updated Jul 21, 2014

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    For three years, starting in January 2002, this stunning 21st century theater was Milan's main opera venue while the historic Teatro alla Scala was being restored and restructured.

    In fact the Teatro degli Arcimboldi Milano (TAM) was built especially for this purpose. It seats 2,400 people (more than La Scala itself) and the stage opening is 16 by 12 meters, which is exactly the same as La Scala, so as to facilitate the transfer of productions from one theater to the other.

    This new theater is located in a northern district of Milan called Bicocca, where the Pirelli tire factory used to be, three quarters of an hour from La Scala by bicycle.

    When the time came, after three years, to return to La Scala in the city center, La Scala's Ballet Company rebelled and insisted on staying out here in Bicocca, for the simple reason that in the TAM every spectator can see the entire stage from every seat -- and ballet dancers do like to be seen when they are performing.

    When I was in Milan I saw a marvelous ballet evening called Ballet Mediterranea in the TAM, based on the music and dance of several Mediterranean countries.

    In addition to La Scala's own Ballet Company, visiting ballet troupes from around the world also perform here, so the Teatro degli Arcimboldi is developing into an exciting center for modern dance with a large and enthusiastic young audience. Some of the spectators no doubt come from the new Bicocca University, which begins just across the street.

    Second photo: Spectators in the main lobby of the TAM.

    Third photo: Dancers taking their bows at the end of Ballet Mediterranea.

    Fourth photo: Dance poster at the TAM box office.

    Please also have a look at my travelogue on the Teatro degli Arcimboldi Milano (TAM).

    1. Teatro degli Arcimboldi 2. Spectators in the main lobby 3. Dancers taking their bows 4. Dance poster at the TAM box office
    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture
    • Theater Travel
    • Architecture

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    Aperitif at the Aperol Terrazza

    by BurgerQueen Written Jun 10, 2014

    Aperol is an Italian alcoholic aperitif, also at the base of some famous cocktails, such as the Spritz. In Duomo square, Aperol owns a nice terrace where you can have an aperitif while looking at the cathedral. Cocktails are offered with freshly baked chips and other home cooked finger food.
    The cost is 12€ per cocktail.

    Related to:
    • Budget Travel

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    Milan has its own Dolce Vita

    by Roadquill Written Dec 22, 2013

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    As we wandered the streets of Milan we found many "sweet" shops that had the delicious looking cakes, cookies, and all sorts of yummy goodies. My appreciation of Milan increased marketly. This shop was just one of many....

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    • Food and Dining
    • Arts and Culture
    • Photography

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    St Bartholomew Statue in the Duomo

    by Roadquill Written Dec 22, 2013

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    Located inside the NE portion of the Duomo is the statue of St. Bartholomew, draped in his own skin...Muscles, veins are all exposed. While rather gruesome, it is an amazing statue representing his martydom where he was skinned alive.

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    Audutorium di Milano

    by bonio Written Dec 19, 2013

    Apparently mostly a venue for performances of the works of Verdi, The Waterboys onoffer for us. A good music watching venue, comfortable with good sound, and, of course, a great performance from Mike Scott and the boys!

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    Epiphany. January 6, Every Year Corteo dei Re Magi

    by Oleg_D. Updated Dec 5, 2013

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    Hours and time of event: The procession leaves Piazza Duomo on January 6, every year, at 11.45 and arrives at the Basilica of Sant’Eustorgio at 12.40. Although in January 2013 procession left Piazza Duomo fifteen minutes ahead of time.
    time of event: 12.15: a stop at the Basilica of San Lorenzo for the meeting between the Wise men and King Herod.
    time of event: 12.30: departure from San Lorenzo.
    time of event: 12.40: arrival at Piazza Sant’Eustorgio, offering of gifts at the living nativity scene and participation of the city authorities.

    Well, it was wonderful and cheerful celebration although “Corteo dei Re Magi” (Procession of Magi Kings) started fifteen minutes ahead of time. This event is worth to see and it is much better than shopping! Maybe I will visit Milan on next Epiphany again!
    Additional information would be obtained here:
    Milano - Basilica of Sant'Eustorgio
    piazza Sant'Eustorgio , 1
    20122 Milano (MI)
    Contact us
    information
    telephone: +39 02 58101583

    The Great Duchy of Milan meets Magi Church and City authorities address to people Marie and Joseph present Baby Christ
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    • Religious Travel
    • Photography

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    Epiphany. January 6, Every Year Corteo dei Re Magi

    by Oleg_D. Updated Dec 5, 2013

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Hours and time of event: The procession leaves Piazza Duomo on January 6, every year, at 11.45 and arrives at the Basilica of Sant’Eustorgio at 12.40. Although in January 2013 procession left Piazza Duomo fifteen minutes ahead of time.
    time of event: 12.15: a stop at the Basilica of San Lorenzo for the meeting between the Wise men and King Herod.
    time of event: 12.30: departure from San Lorenzo.
    time of event: 12.40: arrival at Piazza Sant’Eustorgio, offering of gifts at the living nativity scene and participation of the city authorities.

    Well, it was wonderful and cheerful celebration although “Corteo dei Re Magi” (Procession of Magi Kings) started fifteen minutes ahead of time. This event is worth to see and it is much better than shopping! Maybe I will visit Milan on next Epiphany again!
    Additional information would be obtained here:
    Milano - Basilica of Sant'Eustorgio
    piazza Sant'Eustorgio , 1
    20122 Milano (MI)
    Contact us
    information
    telephone: +39 02 58101583

    Address: Milan,
    Directions: Piazza dell Duomo-Via Torino-San Lorenzo Maggiore-San Eustorgio
    Phone: +39 02 58101583

    Entourage of Magi Magi go to meet King Herod in front of San Lorenzo Magi go to meet King Herod in front of San Lorenzo Magi met King Herod and local priest Herod thinks about the murder of innocents
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    • Arts and Culture
    • Religious Travel
    • Historical Travel

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  • Oleg_D.'s Profile Photo

    Epiphany. January 6, Every Year Corteo dei Re Magi

    by Oleg_D. Updated Dec 5, 2013

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Hours and time of event: The procession leaves Piazza Duomo at 11.45 and arrives at the Basilica of Sant’Eustorgio at 12.40.
    time of event: 12.15: a stop at the Basilica of San Lorenzo for the meeting between the Wise men and King Herod.
    time of event: 12.30: departure from San Lorenzo.
    time of event: 12.40: arrival at Piazza Sant’Eustorgio, offering of gifts at the living nativity scene and participation of the city authorities.

    Well, it was wonderful and cheerful celebration although “Corteo dei Re Magi” (Procession of Magi Kings) started fifteen minutes ahead of time. This event is worth to see and it is much better than shopping! Maybe I will visit Milan on next Epiphany again!
    Additional information would be obtained here:
    Milano - Basilica of Sant'Eustorgio
    piazza Sant'Eustorgio , 1
    20122 Milano (MI)
    Contact us
    information
    telephone: +39 02 58101583

    Bagpipers The first Wise King The second Wise King The third Wise King
    Related to:
    • Religious Travel
    • Historical Travel
    • Arts and Culture

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    Pirelli Building

    by antistar Updated Nov 20, 2013

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    One of the few office towers in Milan that is visually appealing, the Pirelli building also became a part of history itself when some crazed pilot decided to fly his small plane into the top floors and commit suicide shortly after 9/11. This caused the death of a couple of office workers, and also set the world on edge as they braced for the news of another 9/11 style suicide bombing. The Pirelli building has now been almost fully repaired, and it stands proudly just outside the Central Station's main exit on Piazza Duca D'Aosta. Despite its sleek modern lines, it was actually completed in 1959.

    Perelli Building, Milan

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    Classic Streetcars

    by antistar Updated Nov 20, 2013

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    American visitors to Milan may be forgiven for feeling that they've just stepped into a time machine when they see the quaint old orange trams trundling about the city. Milan has a wide range of trams, both old and new, but there are many of old Peter Witt streetcar still running. These trams were designed by Cleveland transit leader Peter Witt, and ran in many US cities earlier in the last century (although never in San Francisco as is commonly believed in Milan). In 1928 Milan built hundreds of Peter Witts and put them into service, and many still remain in service. The source of the myth of San Francisco's famous Muni using the streetcars may have been the result of a gift of ten of the Peter Witts from Milan to that city, as these distinctive orange streetcars can now be seen running on the west coast of California.

    Peter Witt Streetcar, Milan

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    Bastioni di Porta Venezia

    by antistar Updated Nov 20, 2013

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    At the end of Corso Buenos Aires are two huge bastions, built on either side of the road on Porta Venezia. These two towering, solid square structures straddle the traffic, and stand in the place of the original bastions of the city gates.

    One of the two Bastioni di Porta Venezia, Milan

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    Mozart in Milan

    by Nemorino Updated Sep 7, 2013

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    The composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) traveled from Cremona to Milan on January 23, 1770, four days before his fourteenth birthday. He was traveling with his father, Leopold Mozart, on their first (of three) long journeys to Italy from their home in Salzburg.

    Milan's opera house at the time was the “Regio Ducal Teatro”, which was located next to the Cathedral at the site of the present Palazzo Reale (Royal Palace).

    In the next three years Wolfgang wrote three operas for this opera house:

    • Mitridate, Re di Ponto had its premiere on December 26, 1770, with Wolfgang himself conducting and playing the keyboard for the first three performances. This opera was a huge success, and they kept playing it for months on end.

    • Ascanio in Alba was just as successful the next year, 1771.

    • Lucio Silla, his third and last Milan opera, was performed twenty-five times at the Regio Ducal Teatro starting in November 1772.

    We had a beautiful production of Lucio Silla in Frankfurt am Main from 1993 to 1995, and I'm listening to the CDs as I write this -- amazing that Mozart was only sixteen when he composed this fantastic music!

    Update: In 2012 I saw another fine production of Lucio Silla at the opera house in Aachen, Germany. As I wrote at the time on my Aachen intro page, this was “part of a series of four Mozart operas all involving rulers who at first seem to be vicious tyrants but turn out to be lenient and kind-hearted in the end. This was a common ending for opera plots in the 17th and 18th centuries, since the local rulers were often the ones who paid for the operas -- but today it's very hard for the stage director to make the ruler's sudden change of heart appear plausible on stage!”

    Wolfgang and Leopold Mozart left Milan for the last time on March 4, 1773. Three years later the Regio Ducal Teatro burned down and was replaced by the Teatro alla Scala, a short distance away on the other side of the cathedral.

    Palazzo Reale as seen from the Cathedral roof
    Related to:
    • Theater Travel
    • Music
    • Historical Travel

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    Piazza Duomo

    by TooTallFinn24 Written Jul 12, 2013

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    Piazza Duomo has to be the most heavily traveled through area of Milan. The piazza itself is huge. It encompasses the Duomo, Victor Emannuelle II Galleria, Royal Palace and several other buildings. Several of the busiest shopping streets also jet off of the Piazza.

    As with other central piazzas in Italy there is always something happening on Piazza Duomo. Groups of students visiting from areas of Italy, groups dressed up in festive costumes, or protestors saying what is on their mind. There seems be no shortage of interesting things happening on the Piazza Duomo.

    Piazza Duomo Celebration

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    Walk Via Dante

    by TooTallFinn24 Written Jul 5, 2013

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    Via Dante is a vibrant street between the Piazza Courdusio and the Sforzero Castle in Milan. The street is very wide and free of automobiles. Along the street are charming shops, restaurants and a wide variety of street actors and artisans. The street artisans were different from areas of Italy and Spain. In one case there was an excellent marionette show, a man carving flowers out of fruits and vegetables, and a very good singing of an Italian opera. T

    Via Dante Marionette Show Along Via Dante Carving of Flowers From Vegetables

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    Climbing To the Roof of the Milan Duomo

    by TooTallFinn24 Written Jul 4, 2013

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    While the Milan Duomo is a magnificent site to view, climbing it is even more exhilarating.

    First off you have two choices for getting to the roof of the Duomo. Take the elevator for the price of 11 euros which will let you off at the lower of the two viewing points. Or climb the stairs for 7 euros. The climb is not a difficult one and even though the steps can be a tad slippery when it is raining it is by no means a dangerous climb.

    Once you ascend on the roof level there is also little danger. Walking on the roof is easy and there is little chance of falling. Views from the two roof levels are great. It feels amazing to see the detail in the spires. Just a great amount of detail at the roof level.

    TIP: To avoid the long lines for tickets, purchase your ticket across the way at the tobacco shop. You will then be allowed to go to the head of the line saving many minutes of waiting.

    Definitely worth the cost to walk on the roof and see the great detail.

    At the time we went the line opened at 9 am and the last trip up the stairway ceased at 1720. Everyone had to be off the roof by 1800 the day we were therel

    View From the Duomo Roof Duomo Roof Spires Duomo Tower Reconstruction Lookinh Down

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