BikeMi – try out Milan’s city bikes for both grown-ups and kids.

BikeMi is a bike sharing service a bit like Boris-bikes in London. It’s a great feature in public transport, but beware Italian traffic habits.

BikeMi is part of the public transport system, you must register at ATM IMG_6615(Milan’s municipal transport agency) and to do that you need to have a valid credit card (so they have security for the bike and possible damages) read about the legal and practical issues here. You can get a card for either 1 week, it’s €6, or for a single day, €2,50.

For general information see here

Cycling Italian Style
Cycling in Milan is a risky business. Milan is a car city, and cyclists are not respected as equals in the traffic.

So remember to signal your intentions in the traffic clearly, so the drivers have time to give you space. Take it easy and don’t insist too much.

Two important tips: Keep an extra eye on the tram rails (believe you us; it is the voice of experience telling you this) and remember that the cobble stones get extra slippery when it rains.

Short trips are the cheapest
BikeMi is meant to be used for short trips and it becomes proportionally more expensive the longer you use them If you change bicycles frequently the trips can end up being totally free of charge. If you forget to deliver the bike within 24 hours, there’s a stiff fee.IMG_8095

  • 0 – ½ hour: €0,00
  • ½ – 2 hours: €0,50  every half hour.
  • 2 – 24 hours: €2,00  every started hour
  • Over 24 hours: €150 fee

Summer operating hours.
April 1st-November 2nd the service will run
Sunday-Thursday 7 am.-2 a.m.
Friday and Saturday the service will operate 24 hrs a day.

IMG_8960Junior BikeMi.
The municipality of Milan has now added a bicycle service for kids aged 6-10, you’ll find the junior bikes near some of Milan’s parks Parco Sempione/Piazza Castello (find on map), Giardini pubblici Indro Montenelli (find on map), Parco delle Basiliche (find on map),Parco Don Giussani (find on map) and Parco Ravizza (find on map) the bicycles are available between 7 a.m.-1 p.m. and helmets are mandatory Read more here.

 

MoBike.and OFO.

2 bike sharing services Mobike (orange bikes) og OFO (gule bikes) – also known as Uber for bikes – have come to Milan as an alternative to the municipal bicycles. It is a dockless or free flow system where you need to download their apps in order to set up an account and then find the bike nearest your position Mobike charges €0.30 for every half hour and OFO is free to use until the beginning of October when they are going to reveal the charge. Find the links for the app downloads here.

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Flea markets in Milan: go hunting among Italian knickknacks and antiques.

In Milan there are flea markets every Sunday and besides them there are little markets in the city both on weekdays and at weekends. Here you can find those unique objects you won’t find anywhere else.

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The flea market in the Navigli area every last Sunday of the month

If you like antiques, flea market bargains or vintage there are various possibilities in Milan and surroundings.We have chosen the best ones and comment on them.

The flea markets in the surroundings of the city are easier to get to if you’ve got a car. Here you can really find many unique Italian things for your home at very good prices – remember to haggle!

It’s a good idea to be polite and cheeky when haggling. Italians love negotiating!

If you are tired of having the same  IKEA objects at home as everybody else, then take advantage of your trip to Milan to find some unique pieces.

You’ll find everything you find at a normal flea market: Jewellery, toys, hats, chandeliers,vases, lamps, mirrors, cupboards, furniture, vintage – at all price levels.

  • “Mercatino di Brera” (find on map)  the third Sunday of every month from 9 a.m.-6 p.m.this market is located in one of the most beautiful areas in Milan and you should expect pricy objects.
  • “Artigianato e Collezionismo” every second, third and fourth Tuesday + every first Sunday of every month from 8 am to 7 pm in front of Pinacoteca di Brera in Via Brera (find on map).
  • “Mercatino del antiquariato” in the Navigli area, one of the city’s most interesting markets. the last Sunday of every month 8 a.m.-6 p.m. (find on map)
  • “Mostra mercato di antiquariato”  in Piazza Diaz (find on map) on the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Thursdays + 3rd Sunday of every month from 8 a.m.-7 p.m. – just behind Piazza Duomo.
  • “Little Market” products of craftmanship and collectors’ items, in Piazza Sant’Eustorgio (find on map) every 1st Friday and Saturday of every month.
  • “Mercatino” vintage and collectors’ items every 2nd and 4th Friday and the last Sauturday of every month close to Porta Venzia/Corso Buenos Aires in Via Spallanzari (find on map).
  • “Fiera di Senigaglia”: in the Navigli area, every Saturday 9 a.m.-7 p.m.in Ripa di Porta Ticinese (find on map) along the wharf. Here you find everything  Indian, South American and African craftwork, new and second-hand clothes, old furniture, perfumes, candles, books, comics, records, videos and DVDs.
  • “Festivalpark”: Every Saturday and Sunday at. 7 a.m.-3 p.m., here you find clothes, shoes, watches, toys, kitchenware, bicycles etc. This market is in Via Sacile (find on map) near Milan’s wholesale vegetable market.

Brera flea market

Flea markets in the outskirts of Milan.

First Sunday of the month
Corsico on Via Togliatti (find on map)

 Time: 7 a.m.-5 p.m

Second Sunday of the month
Buccinasco on Via Emilia (find on map)

 Time: 7 a.m.-5 p.m

Third Sunday of the month
Corsico on Via Togliatti (find on map)

 Time: 7 a.m.-5 p.m

Every third Sunday of the month at the flea market in Corsico, there’s a flea market for children. Here you can find games, books, clothes and lots of other stuff..
Time: 9 a.m.- 4 p.m.

Fourth Sunday of the month
San Donato Milanese Snam parking place on via Emilia (find on map)

 Time: 7 a.m.-5 p.m

Fifth Sunday of the month;
San Donato Milanese Snam parking place on via Emilia (find on map)

 Time: 7 a.m.-5 p.m

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Milan with children.

If you’re with your children in Milan then buy 3 day’s access to the civic museums for just €12 an adult (under-18s don’t pay). You can get it online or, easier, at the ticket sale at the first museum you visit. There are lunch ideas mentioned after every museum.

Rent a different bike for the kids at the park.
In the Giardini Pubblici Indro Montanelli (find on map) and Parco Sempione (find on map)you can rent the beautiful originale 3-wheel take bike Alternative Byki from 1959,it costs €5 for 20 minutes.

 

Museo nazionale scienza e tecnologia Leonardo da Vinci.
The Leonardo Da Vinci museum is a must for children from age 6 and up. There is enough entertainment to last you several hours on a rainy day.img_6916

The most diversely talented person ever to have lived is painter, inventor etc. Leonardo da Vinci, and Italy’s national technical museum, located in Milan, is also his official museum. It combines the chance to actually try out some of his inventions with the more traditional exhibitions.

Ideas for lunch. Eat some pizza or foccacia on the square in front of the musum, Buy it here:
Panificio Sant’Ambrogio, 3, Via San Vittore (find on map)
Ristoro Monterosso, 11, Via San Vittore (find on map)

Museo di Storia naturale – Dinosaurs and other monsters

Museo di Storia Naturale is yet a perfect place for children from age 6 if they like dinosaur skeletons and everything to do with wild beasts. Unfortunately the homepage for the museum is only in Italian and rather dry but the museum itself is excellent.

 

2015-07-19 16.35.55It’s located in a great park with a wooden jungle gym and a really cozy outdoor café, BAR BIANCO where you can get coffee, ice cream, frozen yogurt, soft drinks and lunch. The park also houses a genuine old-fashioned merry-go-round, a little train and bumper cars for very young kids.


Milan Cathedral (Duomo)

The city cathedral is very impressive on the outside and rather gloomy on the inside. You should spend your time visiting the roof which has an extraordinary view of the whole city and when the weather is clear you can see the Alps in the background. Either take the elevator up or get a fun experience walking all the way up the crooked old stone staircase

You can go get lunch at either Luini (find on map) or Mama Burger (find on map) – both good cheap lunch places.


Castello Sforzesco

The city’s impressive medieval castle Castello Sforzesco where you can choose to just walk right through the beautiful courtyards to the Sempione park, which contains playgrounds and ample lawns where you can have your sandwiches, you can eat at Bar Bianco (find on map) 2015-06-05 21.06.32or try the incredibly vast choice of sandwiches at the kiosk on Piazza Castello  left of the fountain when coming from Piazza Cairoli.

 

On the other side of the park you find the entrance to the design museum Triennale di Milano.

But you could also visit the inside of the castle, where there are various art museums, displaying historical weapons, paintings, musical instruments and furniture. Especially the weapons tend to appeal to kids.

Take a trip on the tram.IMG_7257

It’s really kind of awesome and cheap entertainment at €1,50 for adults (it’s a regular ticket for public transport and children under 11 don’t pay when accompanied by an adult, every adult with a valid ticket can bring 2 children under 11). Milan has old, very elegant trams that were built between 1928 and 1932. Remember to purchase the ticket before you get on the tram. You can get them at newsstands (edicole) and some bars.

If you are up to it, you can now get bikesharing bikes for kids at the weekend. Read about the new BikeMi Junior here.

If you are here between the months of June and September there are public swimmingpools in Milan. Read more here.

Check also our post on classic sightseeing here. Milan offers canal tours and double-deckers.

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Insider tip no. 8: 360° degree view over Milan.

If you want a fun experience and a view of Milan that takes your breath away (don’t worry you won’t have to walk all the way up there is an elevator) then you have to go up in the Torre Branca.

IMG_8188Right next to the museum Triennale di Milano is the 108 m tall Torre Branca which was designed by architect Gio Ponti in 1933. From its top you have a  360° panorama over the whole city. If there are strong winds or the weather is bad they are closed. It costs € 5,00 per person.

 

 

 

 

 

You could combine your vist with a visit to the Triennale museum and maybe even have lunch at the museum’s restaurant Terrazza Triennale. Or you could take a walk through the park and visit the Castello Sforzesco.

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Insider Tip no. 12: classic sightseeing in Milan.

A classic sightseeing tour on your first day here can actually be a really good way to get a feeling of the city and of which things are in the same area. Here we have a list of the best tours Milan has to offer.

IMG_7910Hop-on Hop-off tours.

With the double-deckers you can buy tickets for either 24 or 48 holurs (repspectively €22 and €25) with departure from Piazza Castello (find on map)

In Milan you can also do your sightseeing from a tram, TraMilano, a charming and different way to vist the tourist attractions. This costs €15 and departs from Milan’s central station (find on map) near the Zara shop, check the link above for more precise details.

If you have the MilanoCard you get a 15% discount on tickets. There is also an app for the Hop-on Hop-Off service, find the link to download it here.

Segway tours.

See Milan from a segway in small groups with 8 participants, choose between the day trip of 3 hours. or the night trip of 2.5 hours. Both trips are €75 and start on the ´corner of Via dei Chiostri and Via Ancona (find on map) there is a 30 minute orientation before the trip begins.

IMG_8932Tours on the canals (April-September).

You can go on a boat trip round the Milanese navigli and see the city from a different perspective. You can book tickets in advance here: Call Center +39029094242 every day 10 am-6 pm or by email Monday-Friday info@navigareinlombardia.it

The evening tour of the canals costs €10 and is 40 minutes long with departures at  9 pm – 9.50 pm -10.40 pm. You must purchase the tickets at the point of departure but you can book here:,Call Center +39029094242 every day bewtween 10 am and 6 pm or with an email to info@navigareinlombardia.it

If you’d like an aperitivo while sailing through the navigli the the Happy Boat tour is what you’re looking for,it’s on every Friday and Saturday at 7.30 p.m. and costs €22 cocktail and buffet included in the price. You can book tickets here: Autostradale Viaggi – Milano 2, Passaggio Duomo (find on map)  1, P.zza Castello (find on map).
Tel. +390230089900
email – info@autostrdaleviaggi.it

Rickshaw tours with VELOLEO

IMG_9014An untraditional and green way  to visit the city is by rickshaw or bike taxi, they organize both shopping- and city trips and prices €25-45 for 1/2 and 1 hour respectively. The trips start from both Piazza Castello, Piazza Duomo and Piazza San Babila. You can also book online and personalize your trip  here.

Also check out the guided tours on bicycle here.

The Duomo roof.

The view from the roof of Duomo is breathtaking especially on clear days, were you can see the Alps from up there.It’s a really good idea to reserve tickets in advance so you can skip the line. Book here

If you’re in Milan for 72 hours or less, you should consider getting a MilanoCard. Read more here.

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Insider tip No. 6: Christmas markets 2017, the L’Artigiano in Fiera fair and other Christmas events in Milan.

In Milan the beginning of December is rich on Christmas markets and the grand Artisan Fair and if you want to get some different Christmas presents you should definitely visit them. December 7th and 8th are religious holidays in Milan but all shops are open.

The first is the huge Fair for artisans from all over Italy and the world, it is held at the Fair in Rho (find on map) and takes place from December 2nd-10th from 10 am-10.30 pm. Here you can buy beautiful handmade Christmas gifts and taste culinary specialties from Italy and the rest of the world. Be prepared for crowds and if you possibly can go during the week not at weekends. You are going to need more than one trip if you want to see everything.

December 4th 11 am-9 pm Frida Market at Frida Isola, 3, Via Pollaiuolo (find on map), from 5-9 pm there will be live music and DJ set.

Then there is the traditional market Fiera degli Obej Obej which dates all he way back to 1288 and is always held on the days around December 7th where the Milanese celebrate their patron saint Sant’Ambrogio on December 7th – the day before the national holiday for the Immaculate Conception. This year the market is held on December 7th-10th 8a,m.-8 p.m. in Piazza Castello (find on map). The atmosphere is wonderful and there are lots of local specialties to taste like vin brulè (mulled wine) and chestnuts.The name Obej Obej originates according to tradition from the exclamations of the Milanese children  “Obej, Obej” (dialect for oh belli,oh belli which means “How pretty!”) when they saw the gifts  Pope Pio IV’s emissary brought to the city of Milan in 1510.

December 9th–January 6th Christmas market on Piazza Duomo (find on map) with crafts and gastronomic specialties from all over Italy. The market is open every day from 9 a.m.-9 p.m..

December 7th-January 6th the traditional Milanese Christmas tree can be admired in Piazza Duomo (find on map) this year.

December 2nd-January 7th “Il villaggio delle meraviglie” in the Giardini Pubblici Indro Montanelli (find on map) for the youngest, there are rides, meetings with Santa (starting December 6th) and an Ice skating rink, where you can rent skates. Open every day from 10 a.m.-9 p.m. but the rides open at 3 p.m.

December 16th-17th (10 a.m.-7 p.m.) Green Christmas eco Christmas market with jewellery,clothes amd things for your home at Fonderia Napoleonica di Milano at 21, Via Thaon de Revl (find on map).

The events above this line have been updated for 2017.

img_6971Until February 12th (10 a.m.-midnight every day) there is a skating rink in Piazza Gae Aulenti (find on map). It costs €8 per hour..and you can rent skates.

December 2nd-January 8th there is also a skaing rinkand small market in Piazza del Liberty (find on map).

 

 

 

December 1st-24th there will once again be a musical advent calendar; every day during the period at 6 p.m. a window wil open in the municipal hall (situated on your right when you face the cathedral) on Piazza Duomo (find on map) and a piece of music will be played.

December 4th 10 a.m.9 p.m. East Market Super Xmas Editon in 14, Via Ventura (find on map). Milan’s best flea market..

December 17th-18th 10 a.m.-9 p.m. East Market XMAS EDITION in 14, Via Ventura (find on map). Lots of bargain with the motto Buy, Sell, Swap.

December 10th (2 p.m.-8 p.m). and 11th (10 a.m.-8 p.m.) Christmas market “Le Pulci Pettinate” (The combed fleas) in Magazzino76 in 76, Via Padova (find on map).

December 17th 10 a.m.-midnight Rainbow Christmas Market in the area between Corso Buenos Aires (find on map) against discrimination, lots of stands and Christmas gift ideas.

On December 18th 9 a.m.-6 p.m. there is the Shops under the skyscrapers Christmas market in the Isola area where you can find both vintage and hot new design. It is held in Via Revel and Via Bors

December 7h-January 8th Monday-Friday 3-10 p.m. Saturday-Sunday 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Darsena Christmas Village (find on map) this is not a market but a big Theme Park with a Christmas tree on the water Santa’s house and Santa’s floating sleigh. Throughout the period there will be markets, cultural events, fireworks, light shows and many other events.

December 7th-24th 10 a.m.-7 p.m. XMAS Market 2016 in Via delle Ore (find on map).

December 17th -18th 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Wunder MRKT  Christmas edition in 21/23,  at BASE Milano, 34, Via Bergogonone  (find on map) a Christmas market in the name of eccentricity,  the perfect place for those who are looking for original gifts.

December 20th 8.30 p.m. free Christmas concert in Milan’s cathedral Duomo di Milano (find on map) with “I solisti Veneti” who will be playing Vivaldi and Mozart.

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Insider Tip no. 11: do you need to get cooled down?

Should it get too hot to wander the streets of Milan you can spend a day in of the city’s outdoor swimming pools. Know that enter the water if you’re wearing a swim cap (and obviously swim suit) but you can buy one for a relatively modest price at the entrance. If you haven’t brought a swim suit at e.g. Calzedonia,Yamamay, H&M which you can find everywhernin the city. Admissions fees are around €7-10. The outdoor swimming pools are open from the beginning of June till the end of August.

All the outdoor swimming pools on the list closed on August 27th with the exception of Caimi  (Bagni Misteriosi) which will remain open till September 17th.

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The Caimi Outdoor Swimming Pool

Here are the most central ones:

Argelati, 6, Via Segantini (find on map)
Caimi, 18, Via Carlo Botta (find on map)
Romano,20, Via Ampére (find on map)

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