My Favorite Italian City – Link Up

Picking a favorite Italian city for me is like picking a favorite food. I have lots of favorites! However, I’m gonna get a little technical here…the prompt asks for my favorite Italian city. While many will argue that there are much prettier parts of Italy (and honestly, I don’t disagree), my favorite city is the one I spent 5 months in…Milano! It certainly lives up to the name “city.”

Over time, I heard just about everything about Milan. It’s rainy, it’s ugly, the food is bad, the people are cold…and I kindly disagree.

I think Milan is worth so much more than the 5-hour stopover from JFK to Venice. The cool part about it is that it is less “loud” than other parts of Italy. Places like Rome and Florence are dramatically beautiful, and that’s the allure of those places. But to see beauty in Milan, you have to see beauty in subtlety. Milan’s beauty is hidden, and it takes multiple visits to find it.

To love Milan means to love the European cosmopolitan vibe. So much is happening, from world expos to the world’s most important fashion week. To see Milan is to experience it…the people dressed to the nines are just as much of a tourist attraction as the famous Duomo. Go to Porta Romana to see an ancient Roman gate to the city, and go to Piazza Gae Aulenti to feel like you’re living in 2025. The contrast will strike you.

Porta Romana, Milano
Piazza Gae Aulenti, Milano

I know I am biased to love Milan, but even besides the fact that I studied there, I truly thought it was one of the most interesting places I have ever been. To read more about my experiences, read here.

As I said, picking a favorite Italian city is IMPOSSIBLE for me. So, here were the others I was juggling between:

  1. Rome: There simply isn’t another place like it. I don’t feel as though I need to explain further!
  2. Verona: I really have an affinity toward medieval Italian cities. I can see why Shakespeare chose to make this the setting for many of his works! I’ve been to Verona twice and the beauty of the city wowed me both times.
  3. Palermo: A cosmopolitan city that feels like you’re in the tropics. No complaints there!

And that’s my take! Have you ever been to Milano? Let me know below!

Be sure to read the other posts (linked at the bottom) in this month’s Dolce Vita Link Up! Thanks again to Kristie, Jasmine, and Kelly!

Comments

  1. Lorelle

    Milan’s beauty is definitely subtle. On our last trip to Italy 2 years ago, we caught up with a cousin who lives in Milan, and got a totally different feel and perspective seeing it through her eyes. I must admit though, the magnificent Duomo, gets me every time! Standing in front of it’s presence, even among the crowds, gives me goosebumps! Thanks for sharing your passion for Milan 🙂

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  2. Jasmine

    Hey Dom! Thanks for managing to post even though I see you’re traveling right now! So pumped that you talked about Milan, that’s one that ALWAYS gets underrated, even by me. I used to be of the thought that I hated it, but like you said, it’s because I never gave it a chance. You describe it perfectly in your post. In fact, every time I visit, I discover something wonderful- a new shop, a new neighborhood, a new restaurant…Milan has so much to offer!

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  3. Alison

    Great post! Despite my lukewarm feelings toward Milan, based more on personal stuff, it really is a fascinating city. I’d like to go back now and start fresh with Milan. Plus, despite two visits (and one failed attempt), I still haven’t seen The Last Supper! Embarrassing!

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      Domenic Savaglio

      Thanks for reading! I used to walk past the church where the Last Supper is EVERY DAY and didn’t realize it for months! It’s pretty tucked away but TOTALLY worth seeing. That’s a great example of what I meant about Milan’s hidden gems. 🙂

  4. Britta

    It’s true that it’s hard to pick just one city! Milan definitely isn’t at the top of my list, but I haven’t been able to get a chance to get to know it like you did studying there. Thanks for sharing 🙂

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  5. Angela

    I went to Milan on multiple occasions but stuck to the most touristy attractions. On one of my more recent encounters, I took a different route and saw a whole other side of Milan. One that left me aching for Milan! I much agree with all of your points!

    http://www.angela-williams.org

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  6. Rebecca

    Great to read about Milan in this light. Milan is a bit like London for me – there’s so much amazing stuff happening, world class exhibitions, so many events, then there’s the Duomo – but it’s a city that I can’t spend much time in because it makes me stressed haha. I love so many Italian cities because they don’t feel like cities, they have pedestrianised centres and parks and squares, but Milan is maybe a bit too hectic for me.

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      Domenic Savaglio

      Yeah, Milan is definitely faster paced. However as an American, it kind of seemed more “normal paced” than the rest of Italy. It’s much more cosmopolitan than other places in Italy. Thanks for reading!

  7. LuLu B - Calabrisella Mia

    I have relatives that live near Milan and it’s sad to say I still haven’t been there. But, I do agree that Milan is often under-appreciated. So many people say it’s not really an “Italian” city and maybe it’s more international than most places but that doesn’t make it any less Italian. Milan definitely has an intrigue and it’s own unique beauty!

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