After the train station, the Duomo di Milano or Milan Cathedral was our first place to visit in Italy. I had read plenty of reviews on TripAdvisor and had scoured plenty of blogs on what to do when we got to this fashion capital and other than shopping, a visit to this beautifully intricate cathedral seemed to be it.
My first impressions as we turned the corner into the square that lies before it were of grandeur. The size of the duomo is pretty incredible. The intricacy of the detail on all of its tiers and steeples even more so. We caught the last rays of sun of the day here, radiating off the sandstone texture of the walls, even though the sides were scaffolded over for renovation’s sake.
Even though it wasn’t quite the high season peak for tourists, the square and duomo were still busy, with plenty of hawkers hanging about outside the cathedral. Sadly, it made me really uncomfortable straight away to have people trying to sell me bracelets, electronics and who knows what else. My pickpocket senses also kicked in straight away, so I felt like I needed to hug all of my possesions.
We debated outside for a while whether it was worthwhile to pay the few Euros it costs to get inside, and in the end decided to go ahead. It really was worth it, and it is worth spending the extra EUR2 for a photo pass. The stewards walking around will catch you out if you don’t have the pass, but just be warned if you’re going to spend it, the light inside is really low so the photos aren’t great.
Inside the cathedral, I found the most amazing site was the stained glass windows from the inside. Light streaming through the windows highlights their deep colours and entail. The detailed altars and sculptures are interesting, but get very same-ish once you’ve covered the whole cathedral.
Right next door to the Duomo di Milano is the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II. Basically a shopping complex, but also our first stop for some Gelato. The glass ceiling of the structure is its best feature and it’s well worth popping in here if you’ve visited the cathedral in any case! Always time for ice-cream right?