Visiting Milan: Practical tips for a low-priced trip
Guest Post By: Lily Berns
Milan cannot be called a common tourist town, partly for the reason that it is has got the image of the capital of fashion and banking. However, it might be difficult for some tourists to realize it at first sight.
Being the city with high living standards, it is not an easy task to find in Milan something cheap, to say nothing about free of charge! So if you are visiting Milan this season, check out the options below for possible entertainments that you needn’t pay for in Milan, and provide a few recommendations on how to spend your time in this fashionable Italian city so that it would cost you practically nothing!
Cheap hotels in Milan
The prices for rooms in Milan hotels and hostels can be strikingly expensive depending on the year season. Since it is a business town, all the hotel rooms are often reserved by businessmen. However, a week or a month later some of these hotels will offer big discounts. For instance, during the first months of the year the prices are usually lower than during the other seasons.
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You should book a hotel room in Milan being guided by conferences and exhibitions that take place in a certain period. The same concerns the weekends, as financial transactions may well be concluded at the end of the week. The hotels with the same “star rating” can differ a lot. So, choosing even a cheap hotel you can be completely satisfied with the quality of service.
Here are a few places in Milan where you can stay for a small fee:
Gonzaga Hotel – 2.5 km from Milan Center
Demo Hotel – 3 km from Milan Center
Hotel Ambrosiana – 2.6 km from Milan Center
Scala Nord Hotel – 2.5 km from Milan Center
Bogart Hotel – 3.5 km from Milan Center
Cheap cafes and restaurants in Milan
There is a huge variety of food and drinks in Milan which are available for tourists with a small budget. Pizza is always a good choice, but this is by far not the only dish you can enjoy there for the low price.
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Tourists can get cheap food in Milan just by purchasing a drink at one of the many local bars and restaurants. How does it work? You have to find a café with “aperitivo” sign-board, which means “happy hours” that last from around 17.00 till 21.00. After purchasing a cocktail, wine or another alcoholic beverage, you get access to the buffet with free snacks. In different places there may be different variety of dishes. So “aperitivo” is not only a good way to spend the time with friends, but is also a cheap and nourishing meal!
Transportation in Milan
The transportation issue is one of the most significant parts of any trip. So, let’s decide on the way of getting around Milan.
Milan transportation system includes buses, trams, subway lines and commuter trains – the latter can only be used in the city. Tickets are the same for all kinds of transport. One purchased and punched ticket costs € 1.5 and is valid within 75 minutes.
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However, a rental car would be more advantageous option for getting around the city. Firstly, because it would allow you to use your time in Milan effectively, as you wouldn’t need to adjust to the schedule of the public transport and waste the time in long lines for the tickets.
Secondly, if your trip to Italy is not going to be finished in Milan and you would like to check out it’s another prominent city of Rome, you can make use of one way car hire from Milan to Rome at Linate Airport and, thus, to kill two birds with one stone!
The best free entertainments in Milan
#1: Checking out the local churches
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At first it may seem that the center of Milan consists only of banks and shops. Though, in fact, there are also many churches, the entrance to most of which is free of charge. We recommend to visit the Basilica of Sant’Ambrogio – one of the city’s oldest churches, named after the city’s patron, the Basilica San Simpliciano, inside of which you will find the Roman ruins – the only preserved in Milan, and San Bernardino alle Ossa – a small church with a magnificent ossuary.
#2: Strolling along the parks
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If you want to relax a bit after a tiring day, you can consider some free parks. Sempione Park and Giardini Pubblici Park are the most popular and beautiful parks of the town.
The Sempione Park is dotted with monuments and fountains. Also there is a small lake and winding paths that are suitable for jogging or walking.
Milan Giardini Pubblici Park is located in a short distance from Quadrilatero d’Oro square. It occupies a huge area planted with trees and shrubs. There are three small lakes and Milan Center of Natural History.
#3: Window shopping
Shop windows in a fancy district is one of the best free sights in Milan. Start from Quadrilatero d’Oro square, which is Milan fashion center. It is bounded by the four main streets – Via Montenapoleone, Via Manzoni, Via del Corso, and Via Senato. You will find there worldwide famous brands. Inspecting the latest fashion collections presented in the shop windows of Quadrilatero d’Oro is a truly exciting event that will cost you nothing but the time spent for it.
Another place you cannot miss is a gorgeous passage full of shops. It is located next to Milan Cathedral, and although the prices are huge there, you can just walk along and admire the magnificent architecture.
As you can see, even with a small budget, your trip to Milan can be exciting and interesting. This place will let you experience special feelings and emotions, depending on the way you prefer spending the vacations. So, pack your bags, and start an unforgettable adventure in Milan!
About the Author:
Lily Berns is a wanderlust who loves to explore and observe. She likes to write and takes photos of different places. During her free time, she travels in different cities with her friends.