Spaghetti bolognaise don't exist!
One day at EXPO Milan
Discovering Legambiente’s area and the Italian Pavilion
by Wolfgang & Gabriele
The day after our tour of Florence, we had to say farewell to beautiful Florence and took the high speed train which took us to Milan in two hours! Gianfranco, Silvia and Virginia from Italia Slow Tours picked us up and took us to the Legambiente house at the EXPO. There we were interviewed about our experiences in the Maremma region and about the typical Tuscan food we had tasted there.
For lunch, a nice buffet with local specialities had been prepared: bread, cheese, ham, sausages, jam, honey, various breadspreads, olives, dried tomatoes – and wine, of course.
Afterwards, we had the opportunity to visit the Italian Pavillon at the EXPO with a special tour guide. His explanations were very helpful for us! Without him, we wouldn’t have understood the meaning of the exhibits. The visitor is supposed to experience everything with all his senses, not just with his mind. For instance, there is a completely dark area which has to be discovered by the sense of touch. Of course, a camera is useless there – but it was quite useful in the mirror labyrinth through which we walked… This imposingly designed place we liked best. Constantly changing views of beautiful places in Italy were projected on the glass walls, and the visitors walked through it. I felt like moving in a kaleidoscope!
Another baffling sight was a three-dimensional map of South Europe WITHOUT ITALY (It had been broken off right at the Alps). The first thought was: “Something is wrong here”. The world is hard to imagine without Italy – as for us, we can not imagine that at all! In many aspects, Italy is the the origin of European culture.
Finally it was time to say goodby to the Italia Slow Tour team. Gianfranco kindly took us to the airport Milano-Bergamo and in the evening we returned to Munich with our Air Dolomiti flight – still dreaming of Italy and its hospitality.
Thank you all for this wonderful trip!
Wolfgang & Gabriele
Visit Milan: helpful hints
Italian name: Milano
Milan has got three airports:
- Malpensa Airport is the largest international & intecontinental Airport in Northern Italy. 30 miles Northwest from the city centre. Connections:
→ Train Malpensa Express: trains leaves every 30 minutes in each direction, connecting the Airport to Milan Grand Central Station or Cadorna Railway Station. Terminals 1 and 2. It takes 45 min, price: 14 €
→ Shuttle Bus: Malpensa Shuttle and Malpensa Bus Express connect the airport to Milan Grand Central Railway Station and Milan’s Underground Network. Terminals 1 and 2. It takes 60/70 min, price: 8 €
- City Airport Linate is an international airport connecting Milan with main European cities, located just 4 miles from the city centre. Connections by shuttle: Atm Bus n. 73 from Milano Duomo M1 – M3 (Piazza Diaz, direction: San Babila), first ride at 5.35 am, last one at 00.35. Frequency: every 10 min, price 1,5 €
- Milan Bergamo Airport Orio al Serio is mainly low cost flights Airport, located 30 miles Northwest from Milan. Connections only by Shuttle: There are 4 different bus companies, pricing changes from 5 up to 8 €
ATM is Milan public transport service both for bus, tram and subway. Single ticket costs 1.50€ for 90-min ride. Consider daily/weekly subscriptions. You can buy tickets also texting to 48444. Milan Subway is the longest in Italy, covering 95 km: Donwload and check the map.
Moving in town can be nice also by bike: Milan has got a powerfull bike sharing service providing both regular and e-bikes. Here is the experience of our Ambassador Kim Harding with BikeMi service and a useful video of our Ambassador Roxana explaining how does it work. Car Sharing is also good with many different companies to choose.
Try also the local urban railway train, called Passante Ferroviario, check the experience of our Ambassador Roxana Iacoban travelling by local train in town.
What to do in Milan
Milan is the Italian financial center and one of the European capitals of Fashion. Known for its nightlife as well.
Some tips on Italia Slow Tour: watch our web serie about Leonardo da Vinci’s places, climb on top of the Duomo, visit Prada Foundation, Museums and Art Galleries, taste some fine gelato and try the local Aperitivo and – not joking – enjoy a sailing trip (!!) or some time deep in the nature close to some actual farms and fields.
Where to sleep
Accomodations are quite expensive in Milan, fares rise up and hotels get full according to the rich event calendar of the city (see: Fashion Week, Salone del mobile, Big concerts, Theatre and Sport events, etc.). If you are not specifically interested in any of those, try to travel during other periods to save some money.
Italia Slow Tour recommends:
- Hotel Cervo in Garibaldi District if you want to stay close to city centre and enjoy the nightlife
- Hotel Concorde located on the Green Way Milan-Lecco to Lake Como, if you want to move around adn travel by bike
Shopping in Milan
The famous Fashion District involves the following streets/areas: Via Montenapoleone, via Manzoni, via della Spiga and Corso Venezia. The so called “Quadrilateral of Fashion”. Here you can find all kind of brands and shops. Easy to reach by Subway (stop at Montenapoleone station).
Don’t miss the Street Markets! Almost every day you can find one: best are the ones in Viale Papiniano (on Tuesday) and Via Fauchè (on Saturday). More on the official website of weekly street markets. If you are into sustainable local products, Milan has got 8 actual farms in town and a green Earth Market.
If you are interested in Outlet Shopping, in the outskirt of Milan you can find 4 different Fashion Outlets, in a radius of 62 miles. Here you can find everyday a lot of famous high quality Italian brands on sale, with prices cut off up to 50%. All the outlets are connected to the center of Milan by Shuttle Bus:
- Serravalle Designer Outlet – Shuttle departure from Milan Central Station or Cairoli square
- Fidenza Village Outlet Shopping – Shuttle departure from Piazza della Repubblica 5, at the corner with Turati st.
- Vicolungo The Style Outlets – Shuttle departure from Cairoli square
- Rodengo-Saiano Franciacorta Outlet Village – Shuttle departure from Cairoli square