Italy: Milan and lake Como

Yet another travel post: April has been eventful. This time, I went to Italy to soak up the sun for vitamin D. We didn’t have a precise schedule to follow but that didn’t hinder us from having fun. The first destination was Milan, the glamorous city of fashion. From Milan, we went to Lake Como to breathe in some fresh air. Here are the highlights of the trip.

The main reason I went to Italy was to reunite with my friend from France to visit another one in Rome. Since tickets for Milan were much cheaper, we figured that it was an opportunity to visit another city. In Milan, we stayed in B&B Hotel Milano, near San Siro stadium which is the largest stadium in Italy. Neither of us has an affinity for football: we stayed there for the cheap room.

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We took around 30 minutes to reach Duomo di Milano, the iconic cathedral which is pretty much the Tour Eiffel of Milan. It was beautiful, but the place was overcrowded. We decided to contemplate it from afar before heading to Galleria Vittorio Emanuel II.

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It’s the oldest active shopping center in Italy so it mainly contains luxury retailers, restaurants and coffee places. You know that it’s a prestigious place when the city of Milan decided to shoo away McDonald’s to replace it with Prada.
However, the real star is the spectacular glass dome: on sunny days, the light shines in and turns this gallery into a gorgeous monument.

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For your information, if while walking under the hot Milanese sun you start craving a refreshment, Chinatown has good bubble tea stores. It also has legit Asian stores with a wide choice of products and bakeries with cheap options.

The next day, we headed to Lake Como by train. We took a one hour train from Milan Central Station to Varenna. From Varenna, we took a ferry to Bellagio. Like you can see in the photos, the sun decided to hide on that day.

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Bellagio is very charming: I enjoyed strolling through the small streets and walking up and down the stairs on the hill. However, I think that it’s a place that offers more relaxation than exploration. A few hours is enough to take in the view. Also, do not forget to eat gelato whenever you get a chance. It’s obligatory.

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When we got back to Varenna by ferry, we decided to walk along the water’s edge; the views did not disappoint us. On one side, little cafes, gelaterias every two steps and colorful houses tucked in against each other. On the other side, the view of the refreshing water and far in the distance, little towns dotted along the shores of the lake. Lake Como allowed us to rest from the busy streets of Milan.

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Milan is a dynamic city, with lots of tourists coming in to visit. It can be tiring to navigate through the city ( especially when you have no plans whatsoever). Lake Como is the place to go when you get tired of urban noises. You get the whole package: a lake, island hills, cute and quaint towns. And ferry rides as a bonus! If you go to Milan, I recommend you to squeeze in Lake Como in your schedule, you won’t regret it.


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