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 Milan Guide
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Milan is the undisputed business capital of Italy, it's the place where deals are made and is home to Italy's stock exchange. Milan was once famous as the Roman stronghold of Mediolanum, but having been subject to many successive powers, endured fascism and allied bombing, is like many important cities having had to be reconstructed many times over. It's now a slightly austere but very handsome city with a vibrant atmosphere and many interesting sights.

Milan's fashion industry has put it on the map as a sophisticated city, from where it's possible to rest before heading further north, or to the Alps, or to Lake Como. It's a perfect place for a weekend or romantic break and there is no excuse when it is so easy to find flights to Milan.

The Duomo, in Piazza del Duomo, remains Italy's most famous unfinished masterpiece. Work began in 1386 under the instruction of Gian Galeazzo Visconti and still continues today. It's considered Europe's biggest Gothic cathedral. Climb up to the Duomo's roof to enjoy the view over the city to the mountains, or rest at its feet in one of many cafés admiring the fashionable and chic who wander by.

The Pinacoteca di Brera houses one of Italy's finest art collections with works by Mantegna, Raphael and Piero della Francesca. The Cenacolo Vinciano houses Leonardo da Vinci's Last Supper.

Opera is a national passion and is celebrated by the Milanese with typical Italian fervour. La Scala's season traditionally opens on St Ambrose day (the city's patron saint), 7 December, and will run until July.

The Ticinese is the most atmospheric quarter of Milan, the Navigli is the most youthful and bohemian (like Paris's left bank), the canal quarter has some excellent markets and you'll find many of the grandest Milan hotels in the station quarter.


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