A very characteristic local experience in Milan is visiting the big open air markets with fruit, vegetables. cheese, fish, charcuteri and good bargains in shoes and clothes, there are several every day except on Sundays. There’s life, commotion, genuine Italian atmosphere and competitive prices. We have chosen the most central ones for you.
For those of you who are only in town for a short visit we have made a mini route where you get all the best Milan has to offer in terms of both shopping, food, architecture and culture. For our first express shopping route we have chosen the area from Piazza Gae Aulenti to Piazza della Scala, from the new and modern to the old and traditional.
Start on Piazza Gae Aulenti; Milan’s newest area, where you should see “Bosco verticale (the vertical forest))
On the piazza you find the famous Muji,
Grom ice cream,
Replay store with Italian denim and a nice bar where you can have your morning coffee,
and Illy café – the world’s best espresso.
Located under the square is the supermarket Esselunga if you want to shop for specialties.
From there continue down Corso Como and check out the famous design store and art gallery at no. 10 – good place for lunch.
at the end of Corso Como turn left and check out High Tech with all you can desire for your home and on the square (Piazza XXV Aprile) is food temple Eataly
Continue into the Brera area (Via Solferino, Via San Marco and Corso Garibaldi) which is the old artistic neighbourhood of Milan with lots of quirky and chic stores and galleries.
If you’re here on either a Monday or a Thursday it is worth your while to visit the open air market in Via San Marco.
Continue down to Piazza della Scala with Milan’s famous Scala theater.
If you still have energy and time to spare you are now directly behind Piazza Duomo just walk thorugh the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele which links Piazza della Scala and Piazza Duomo and you have Milan’s cathedral right in front of you.
Now you are probably starving and you are close to several good restaurants e.g. Langosteria Cafè,4, Galleria del Corso (find on map) excellent seafood €€€, Piz, 34, Via Torino (find n map) genuine Neapolitan pizza €, I 12 Gatti,11/12, Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II on the corner of Piazza della Scala (find on map) with a fantasic terrace on the top of Milan €€ and Mama Burger,18, Via Agnello (find on map) good quality burgers €.
If you want a gourmet experience, then use the Michelin guide and these amazing alternatives at reasonable prices. We have also selcted the best vegan restaurants in Milan – look for VEGAN in the list.
If you do choose to dine at a restaurant with Michelin stars (1-2) you should expect to spend around €130 per person.
Italian restaurants generally have very high standards and one thing Italians are really into, is quality food. So it’s a good idea to follow the locals around lunch and dinner time.
Food is one of the most important aspects of life in this country; Italians discuss what they’ll have for dinner while they’re having lunch, So if a restaurant has a lot of Italian guests you are sure to eat well.
Besides the names you can find in the Michelin guide we recommend the following places. The price levels are varied – € 20-30, €€ 30-50, €€€ >50 – but note that it isn’t necessary to spend a fortune to eat well.
Langosteria Café 4, Galleria del Corso (find on map) right in the center of the city
Pizzeria Sibilla, 14, Via Mercato (find on map) great pizza but come early, you cannot make reservations here. €
In the photo you see Milan’s brand new neighbourhood Porta Nuova, you also find the famous “Bosco Verticale” (vertical forest) behind Piazza Gae Aulenti. You must absolutely visit HightechCargo, a great store with furniture and objects for your home. In the rest of this area you find the quaint, trendy boutiques with the up-and-coming young designers where you can find cool, unique stuff.
Shops: at 1, Piazza San Marco is the world’s best men’s shoes shop – Iliprandi (find on map). Thursdays there’s a characteristic open air market here with fruit, vegetables and clothes. #roundTheCorner Joost 2, Via Verdi (find on map) great design for both her and him.
Via Solferino is a treasure trove of amazing, original boutiques (find on map), check out the unique clothes store Goods at 2, Via Castelfidardo (find on map) the concept is exclusivity, they sell their own range of silk shirts but also have other brands from France and Spain and they also have bags and shoes but they only have 3 sizes of each item in each colour and they don’t restock them but offer new items once they’ve sold the older ones, they also don’t do traditional sales but have regular discount days, the jewellery is also unique: 1 piece of each so you’ll never run into anyone with the same pair of earrings as you High tech Cargo (find on map) is on Piazza XXV Aprile , where you’ll also find foodie paradise Eataly, which is housed in the converted Teatro Smeraldo. Here you can get regional specialties from small producers that you can take home with you, it is also a fantastic place to eat or just have coffee with pastries. If you want delicacies to take home with you try also in the brand new Esselunga supermaket situated beneath Piazza Gae Aulenti. From here you continue down super chic Corso Como – with the shop 10 Corso Como, which also houses the art gallery Galleria Carla Sozzani #LuxuryAndBeauty – which leads you into Milan’s brand new area Porta Nuova.
Fashion blogger Chiara Ferragni @theblondesalad opens her new store on July 26th in Via Capelli, the short stretch between Corso Como and Piazza Gae Aulenti (find on map) #ChiaraFerragniCollection #ChiaraFerragniShoes.
#RoundTheCorner you find the great laboratory and shop Arzigogolo, that makes very beautiful and original necklaces, earrings and textile bags at surprisingly affordable prices, it’s at 11, Via Maroncelli (find on map).
Coffee:: Panarello, 52, Via della Moscova, great pastry!! (find on map), at the same address you also find Pattini and and 50 meters from there in the direction of Corso Como there is Radetzky with outdoor couches (find on map).
Lunch:: Here is the very original Tramè, Piazza San Sempliciano 7 (find on map), where they prepare classical Venetian sandwiches, the place is cosy and the choice is great
We also recommend Fioraio Bianchi Caffè 7, Via Montebello.
In 12, Corso Garibaldi you can get organic burgers at Baobab (find on map)
Then there is Via Palermo a street packed with interesting eateries (find on map) Panini Durini, 4, Piazza Gae Aulenti (find on map) super delicious sandwiches and coffee to-go, please note that it is situated below the square itself next to the Esselunga supermarket.
You can get delicious to-go sandwiches and ready meals at Rossi e Grassi in 4, Via Ponte Vetero (find on map) 10 Corso Como Cozy courtyard, with good lunch. Pizzeria di Porta Garibaldi, 6, Corso Como (find on map). Temakinho 53, Corso Garibaldi (find on map) Il Forno di Brera, 5, Via Solferino (find on map) although is technically “just” a bakery, they have lots of delicious dishes and pasta that you can eat either inside at the tables or outside on the comfortable benches. Of course they also have great pizza and foccaccia Panini Durini, 24, Via Mercato (find on map), delicious sandwiches, cakes and coffee to go. Café Gorille, 20, Via Gaetano de Castillia (find on map) a really cosy and beautiful café which is rich on atmosphere. Italian ice cream: Grom, Piazza Gae Aulenti (find on map) good concept and excellent icecream. Rivareno, 20, Via Mercato (find on map) – absolutely fabulous ice cream made with only fresh, natural ingredients and sweetened with cane sugar.
The famous fashion quadrangle Quadrilatero della moda, which has its name after the four streets it is enclosed by: Via Montenapoleone, via Manzoni, Via della Spiga and Corso Venezia. #LuxuryAndBeauty is really worth a trip, this is genuine old Milan and even though you may not be planning to go shopping here – go anyway and see it. Many of the boutiques are entire fashion shows in themselves.
Shops:Here you’ll find them all; Armani, D&G, Dior, Ralph Lauren, Gucci, Bottega Veneta, Ferragamo, Louis Vuitton, Bulgari, Valentino, Prada, Versace, Cavalli, Missoni, Hermès, Burberry, Kartell, Alessi, Comptoir des Cottoniers, Trussardi , Paul Smith, (the last 5 are in Via Manzoni)
Coffee: While you’re here go and enjoy coffee at the charming Pastry shop Cova, 8, Via Montenapoleone with courtyard. Pastry shop Marchesi (find on map) one of Milan’s oldest pastry shopshas opened a new shop herein 9, Via Montenapoleone.
Lunch: GB Bar, 2, Via Agnello (find on map) Another exclusive and very cosy restaurant in this area is Il Salumaio di Via Montenapoleone at 10, Via Santo Spirito (find on map) – this is also a great place to have a coffee break. Brek good self service restaurant with reasonable prices,1, Piazzetta U. Giordano (find on map) Princi Bakery, Corso Venezia 21 (find on map) in principle this is a bakery but they prepare delicious lunch dishes: pasta, risotto and salads. Go early (before 12.30) because the place is normally packed!! Panini Durini, 26, Via Durini (find on map), small place but they make absolutely delicious sandwiches, soups, salads AND they’ve got incredible coffee (also to go) and cakes.
Shops: From Piazza Duomo you turn down Via Torino with lots of sports shops, street wear and Japanese Muji (find on map). Victoria’a secret has opened recently in 14, Via Torino (find on map) #roundTheCorner : Via San Maurilio and Via Santa Marta with little boutiques. (find on map) eg Funky Table, 19, Via San Maurilio.
#roundTheCorner: Via Giacomo Mora (find on map) where there are vintage shops and the shop Tessuti Mimma Gini with fabrics and various objects for your home, and Cavalli e Nastri one of Milan’s oldest vintage boutiques. In this street you also find Groupies Vintage and Lisa Corti #roundTheCorner who sells colourful tablecloths, bedspreads, blankets for you couch, ceramics and clothes. #roundTheCorner Corso di Porta Ticinese – street wear (great for teenagers), alternative design, vintage boutiques, this is a place where the Milanese themselves go browsing. #roundTheCorner Via Cesare Correnti an exciting area with various shops e.g. Joost. (find on map) great design for both her and him.This tour ends in Viale Papiniano,where there is a great open air market on Tuesdays 7.30 a.m.-1 p.m.and Saturdays 7.30 a.m.-5 p.m..
Coffee: B Café, 20, Via Santa Marta. Caffè della Pusterla, 22, Via Edmondo de Amicis – great atmosphere (find on map).
Pastry shop Marchesi (find on map) one of Milan’s oldest pastry shops located in 11/a, Via Santa Maria alla Porta .
Lunch: Visit foodie temple Peck, (find on map) Milan’s no. 1 delicatessen and get an amazing lunch.
Here you can enjoy a slice of pizza or foccacia.
Then there is Fratelli La Bufala, 16, Corso di Porta Cinese (find on map) Panino Giusto, 1, Corso di Porta Ticinese – quality sandwiches. (Find on map)
Delicious Southern Italian street food at Slow Sud, 4, Via delle Asole (find on map)
In Via Giacomo Mora (find on map) there are also a couple of cosy places for lunch.
For tasty vegetarian food check out La Vecchia Latteria, 6, Via dell’Unione (find on map). Italian ice cream:: Grom, 51, Corso di Porta Ticinese (find on map) good concept and excellent ice cream.
4. San Babila/Corso Vittorio Emanuele #TheHighStreetInItalian – (Find on map)
In this area you are the easy prey for street vendors who will try to make you buy books, bracelets and other stuff. They are really nice but once you start talking to them you won’t get away until you buy something. Ignore them, they’ll try to make you take a bracelet saying it’s a gift – DON’T TAKE IT (unless, of course, you want to buy it)!
We are in the center of the city and here you find for example:
The regular High Street shops i.e. Brian & Barry – department store with an Eataly department. Boggi (great outfits for him), Diesel, Max & Co, Max Mara, Liu Jo,Sephora, Banana Republic, GAP, Intimissimi, Calzedonia, Yamamay, Kiko, La Rinascente – department store, Sisley, Guess, Swatch, Footlocker, Benetton, H&M, COS, … And Other Stories and Zara. #roundTheCorner you find luxury department store Excelsior (4, Galleria del Corso – find on map), and the outlet Diffusione Tessile (if you’re into Max Mara ,Max & Co), very cheap compared with their official shops, it is in 6, Galleria San Carlo). (Find on map) The beautiful Galleria Vittorio Emanuele(find on map) with shops Stefanel, Prada, Borsellini, Gucci, Louis Vuitton Between our areas 4 and 2 you find Abercrombie & Fitch on the corner of Corso Matteotti, where you can find other really great shops, a favourite of ours is Moroni Gomma.
Lunch;Luini (they make Panzerotti – a kind of mini calzone either fried or baked, there’s normally a very long queue, but it’s very well organizedand fast and more importantly; it’s worth the wait, you can eat it picnic style on Piazza San Fedele (right behind – find on map), where you can enjoy coffee afterwards in the brand new Lavazza Store. There’s also the Italian version of burgers Mama Burger (find on map). Il Mercato del Duomo (food market, bistrot and restaurant with an incredible view over Piazza Duomo). If you want to see and be seen there are lots of outdoor places on Corso Vittorio Emanuele itself, Italians don’t go here, they are typical tourist traps. Worth mentioning is also Fratelli La Bufala, 8, Galleria San Carlo (find on map). On the same square you have Gino Sorbillo Neapolitan pizza in Milan.
Inside the Museo del Novecento right at Piazza Duomo you find the exclusive Giacomo Arengario with a view on the Duomo Crocetta, 5, Piazza Diaz (find on map) with excellent sandwiches, salads and first courses. Panini Durini, 4, Via Mengoni (find on map), delicious sandwiches, cakes and coffee to go.
On the top floor of department store La Rinascente there are several restaurants, a food market and the most amazing view over Piazza del Duomo and the city.
Coffee:: Try out the delicious coffee with whipped cream at San Carlo al Corso, on Piazza San Carlo (find on map) or sip it at the exclusive Gucci Café halfway in Galleria Vittorio Emanuele (find on map).
Lavazza Store on Piazza San Fedele (find on map).
Shops: H&M, Zara, Conipel, Benetton, Stefanel, Pepe Jeans, Kiko (affordable makeup), JDC, Guess kids, Vergelio sko, Bata shoes, Levis, Antony Morato, Geox , Elena Miro, Freddy, Furla, Desigual, Intimissimi Lingeri, Liu-Jo, Camicissima (shirts for him & her), Celio (for him), Havaianas, Tezenis Lingeri, bassetti (home innovation), Du Pareil (kids’ clothes). OVS (Italian low-cost clothing) have opened their so far biggest store in 21, Corso Buenos Aires The biggest and first shop in the Japanese chain Muji, to have opened in Milan.
#roundTheCorner -Lisa Corti
In adjoining Via Lecco no. 2 (find on map) you find Lisa Corti #roundTheCorner who sells colourful tablecloths, bedspreads, blankets for you couch, ceramics and clothes. Viale Tunisia Carpediem shop.
Lunch: MINT Garden café, 12, Via Felice Casati (find on map) Really delicious lunch and brunch place. Pizzeria Spontini, 4, Via Gaspare Spontini (find on map) Paninoteca, Galleria Corso Buenos Aires (find on map) Panino Giusto, 3, Via Malpighi – quality sandwiches (find på kort) Capatoast, 4, Corso Buenos Aires – a delicious new concept 30 different toasts including vegetarian and vegan ones.(find on map). Pavé, 27, Via Felice Casati (find on map) – delicious lunch and great coffee.
Coffee: you could probably do with a break from the crowds on Corso Buenos Aires, so go into Indro Montanelli Public Gardens and have a coffee break at Bar Bianco (find om map); or go to Panarello, famous for their pastries (find on map)
This area is actually a shopping-route. Start at Via Marghera – via Belfiori – Corso Vercelli – Corso Magenta with a detour to Via Vicenzo Monti and a cultural break to “The Last Supper” (you have to book tickets phone number +39 02 92800360) another must-see is art gallery/design store Spazio Rossana Orlandi at 14/16, Via Matteo Bandello which is just a little out of the way but so worth visiing.
Shops: #roundTheCorner in 5, Via Luigi Sacco (find on map) and 2, Via Ravizza (find on map) Io & Meg different jewellery and clothes. Via Marghera here you find several shoe shops and varied clothes shops, outlets. OVS clothes shop H&M style. #roundTheCorner Details, 8, Piazza Piemonte, with great shoes and original clothes design at affordable prices.(find on map) Via Belfiore (find on map) fantastic hardware store, Lo Sfizio clothes, Subdued, in Corso Vercelli you find department store Coin with medium prices, Boggi (stylish outfits for him), Comptoir des Cottoniers, Max & Co, Gallo if you’re into quality and stripes, Furla handbags and wallets, BRIAN & BARRY, IntimissimiGemelli luxury and quality, Sephora makeup, ZARA home, Trussardi, Danza, Zadiq & Voltaire plus Swarovski, Songes, Carré Dartistes. Victoria’a secret, 20, Corso Vercelli (find on map)
Coffee: Biffi pastry shop: Have coffee or #aperitivo old Milan style or try it in the small coffee shop at 36, Corso Vercelli , where you drink coffee while enjoying the smell of freshly ground coffee beans, and you can buy some for your espresso machine at home.
Lunch: Ham Holy Burger, 34, Via Marghera (find on map) great burgers, Pizzeria da Gino,9, Corso Vercelli (find on map) Standing lunch with good pizza and ready meals. Then there is Fratelli La Bufala, 13, Via Cima Rosa (find on map) Panino Giusto, 8, Via Cherubini (find on map) quality sandwiches. Rosticceria Gallo, 8, Corso Vercelli a deli and restaurant for foodies that has delicious ready-to-go meals (find on map) Fru.Eat on Piazzale Baracca (find on map) – lunch based on fruit and vegetables. Panini Durini,7, Via Buonarotti (find on map) delicious sandwiches, cakes and coffee to go. Panini Durini, 31, Corso Magenta (find on map), delicious sandwiches, cakes and coffee to go.
Italian ice creamGrom, 1a, Via Alberto da Giussano (find on map) Good concept and excellent ice cream.