Where to Stay in Milan | 5 Best Areas

where to stay in Milan | timelesstravelsteps.com

The 5 Best Neighbourhoods in Milan for families, couples and individual travellers

Travelling to the fashion metropolis and wondering where to stay in Milan? No worries. With so many places on offer, it can be both overwhelming and time consuming to find the perfect place for your stay. I have experienced it many times! I have researched, and taken time to consider the ratings of the accommodations in question before compiling this list for you. I hope to provide some of the highly rated places for you to consider where to stay in Milan when visiting this vibrant city.

The City of Milan, as you may already know is not just an iconic fashion hub but also a cultural and financial hub of Italy. It is located in the Lombardy region in northern Italy and is easily accessible by air, train and by road. Steeped in history, Gothic architecture and piazzas, sits modern skyscrapers that will blow you away! In addition, the city is surrounded by picturesque mountains and so many lakes and valleys that makes Milan a perfect destination for history buffs, fashionistas, hiking enthusiasts or for “just because getaways.”

For the many reasons you may wish to visit this incredible and energetic city, this post may have the answer to the question, where to stay in Milan along with added timeless memories.

Given the great many choices, the following list is curated just for you. Places to stay in Milan are selected by the top 5 neighbourhoods to suit for all interests  — individuals, couples and families.

Timeless Travel Steps Best Tips:

Not sure where to begin? Join one of our popular guided tours for an authentic Milanese experience:

1 | Gourmet Food Tour in Milan > This tour provides a great overview of Milanese food traditions. Avoid the tourist traps and join a local food expert to discover and taste a range of dishes with alcoholic drinks;

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This article and related articles are sprinkled with affiliate links. We may earn a commission from qualified purchases and bookings at no additional cost to you. These links have no influence on the editorial content we produce. Our travel to Milan, Italy was 100% self-funded.


Milan is massive and thankfully most of the attractions are centrally located, namely in Zone 1. While the city is best explored on foot, Milan’s public transport is extensive and runs an efficient service for you to hop onto when need be. The system is convenient and easy to navigate – one can get around Milan like a local if you familiarise yourself with the basics.

Read: Getting around Milan like a Local — A Complete Guide to Public Transportation in Milan

There are a number of districts and neighbourhoods in Milan that cater specifically for certain interests. Milan is divided into nine administrative districts covering about 180 square kilometres. These districts are further divided into neighbourhoods. Each neighbourhood offers every visitor something unique to experience. In this guide on where to stay in Milan, you will find the ideal neighbourhoods along with conveniently located attractions you might want to visit.

You may want to read the Complete Travel Resource on Milan. The Resource has articles on transportation, places to visit, Milan bucket list, day trips and so much more for a timeless trip to this fun city.

Let’s take a look at the 5 top neighbourhoods — where to stay in Milan when you visit.


Milan Cathedral, Italy - How to make the best of your visit
Where to Stay in Milan, Italy

In the very heart of Milan is Centro Storico, home to the most famous cultural and historical attractions as well as the city’s main piazza. It is a bustling area with tourists and locals alike. It is busy all day, all night, all seasons and all year round! If you are heading for a quiet vacation or a crowd-free vacation, then this is not the neighbourhood you might want to be. On the other hand, if you intend to visit the best of the beaten path over a weekend or a short-break stay, then this is absolutely the place to be!

1.1 | Hotels and Aparthotels in Centro Storico, Milan

Where to stay in Milan


Where to stay in Milan

Located just 550 yards from the Duomo and a stone’s throw from Milan’s famous shopping streets, NH Collection Milano President is a stylish modern hotel featuring five star accommodation. Some rooms have balconies and views of the cathedral. The restaurant offers typical Milan-style dishes, as well as a complete menu that includes Italian and international cuisine. A generous breakfast buffet is served daily.

Particularly suitable for couples and 2 people stays.

Book NH Collection Milano President


This aparthotel boasts a central location — just 250 yards from Milan Cathedral and in the heart of the historic and financial district of Milan. It’s location is ideal for exploring the city — 400 yards from La Scala and the fashion district of Milan. It features modern accommodation and city views. Has self-catering options.

Suitable for solo travellers, couples and family.

Book Duomo Hotel & Apartments


Where to stay in Milan

The Square Milano Duomo is conveniently located within a 5-minute walk from Milan Cathedral and the Vittorio Emanuele Galleria shopping centre. Beautifully set within a historical building, The Square offers a restaurant, a bar and free WiFi throughout. Particularly suitable for a two person trip.

Book: The Square Milano Duomo

1.2 | Things to do in Centro Storico

1.2.1 | Milan Cathedral

Milan Cathedral is the most popular tourist attraction in Milan and for good reason. It is one of the grandest Gothic Cathedral in all of Europe and the second largest Catholic church after St Peter’s Basilica in Rome. A tour of the Cathedral will reveal much of its history and it is a must for history buffs and art lovers.

Learn more from: Milan Cathedral and how to make the best of your visit.

1.2.2 | Rooftop of the Duomo

Next, head to the Best of Milan – Sunset on the Rooftop of the Duomo! It is mesmerising and if you can fit it into your schedule, you will thoroughly enjoy the evening experiences

Learn more about this experience and watch the sunset – a short video of the changing hues is included: Best of Milan – Sunset on the Rooftop of the Duomo

1.2.3 | Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II

The Galleria is located just steps away from the Duomo and is a stunning 19th century shopping arcade. This fascinating Milanese ‘drawing room’ with its high-end labels along with the great choices in restaurants and bars is a destination in Milan not to miss.

Read > Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II – Why you should visit and what you need to experience.

1.2.4 | La Scala Opera

North of the Galleria Vittorio in Piazza della Scala is the historical opera theatre that dates back to 1778. Renowned for its opulence and acoustic qualities, it should firmly make Milan’s bucket list.

Take a look at this fabulolous 19 bucket list ideas on Milan

Timeless Travel Steps Best Tips:

Guided Experience of La Scala Theatre

1.2.5 | Via della Spiga

Window shop and shop till you drop when you visit Via della Spiga, one of Milan’s most famous and charming high-end shopping areas, located on a cobblestone street.

1.3 | The following attractions are easily missed but worth including them in your itinerary:

1.3.1 | Parco Sempione

Within minutes of Milan Cathedral and the Galleria Vittorio, is Parco Sempione, Milan’s largest green area. If you are looking for some respite from sightseeing, then this is an ideal place to rest up. Also within its grounds, you could visit a number of attractions.

Navigate to Parco Sempione | 5 must see attractions to learn more and for a full list of attractions within the park.

1.3.2 | Poldi Pezzoli Museum

Visit Poldi Pezzoli and immerse yourself in one of the world’s richest collection of private art.;

1.3.3 | The Last Supper mural at Santa Maria delle Gracie

On the wall of the refectory of Santa Maria is one of the greatest masterpieces in the world — the Last Supper by Leonardo da Vinci. This famous painting has attracted so many viewers from around the globe that tickets are usually sold out. If the Last Supper is on your bucket list for Milan, then ensure you have your tickets booked in advance to avoid disappointment. Book a skip-the-line tour and marvel at the masterpiece without having to wait. Learn of its unique history from a tour guide.

Read: Three ways to experience Leonardo’s Last Supper at Santa Maria delle Gracie

Where to stay in Milan

1.4 | Places to Eat in Centro Storico

Centro Storico is the best place to eat and drink There are great many choices here from high-end dining to simple cafes. For an easy authentic meal without the fuss, you could try Pizza Am. Their thin crispy pizza goes well with any bottled beer!

A visit to Milan and a traditional Italian aperitive is a must try. Visit Bar Camparino where the tradition of the Campari has been kept alive since 1897. Try the iconic Campari and soda or Negroni cocktail.

If you want to experience the Milanese specialities at a landmark cafe, I would highly recommend a visit to Ristorante Biffi for a true traditional Italian cuisine.

Cafe Biffi is the oldest cafe at the Galleria. Biffi’s main specialities are Ossobucco with Milanese risotto and the Milanese cutlet. Although there are many choices, the menu has remained largely unchanged for the last twenty-five years. To enjoy a meal at Cafe Biffi will require a booking well in advance.

Georgina in Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II | Why you should visit


Located northwest of Centro Storico, amidst a tangle of narrow streets is the trendy neighbourhood of Brera. If you want to be close to the heart of Milan, then this is the best place to stay. Brera has some of the prettiest looking buildings and is home to the famous Pinacoteca de Brera. Fashion boutiques and antique stores line the pedestrianised streets. A good mix of both tourists and locals enjoy the restaurants, bars and the shops. It is relatively a traffic-free area. Safe, sophisticated and a place to be seen.

2.1 | Hotels in Brera

Where to stay in Milan


Where to stay in Milan

This historic Grand Hotel et de Milan was once home to the composer, Giuseppe Verdi for 27 years. Built in 1860s, the unique architecture of this landmark structure reflects the charm and allure of an old Milanese mansion. Sitting next to Montenapoleone Metro and conveniently located within 5 minutes walk of La Scala Theatre, and 10 minutes to the Duomo, the Grand Hotel et de Milan is a favourite amongst solo travellers, couples, and family.

Book Grand Hotel et de Milan


Where to stay in Milan

This impeccable and refined 18th century palace boasts a 4,000 sq m garden. Conveniently located within a 6-minute walk to La Scala and 15 minutes to the Duomo, the Bulgari Hotel Milano is a favourite for solo, 2 people and family travellers.

Book Bulgari Hotel Milano


Where to stay in Milan

For the ultimate fusion in Milanese style and Oriental luxury, stay at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel Milan. Conveniently located near La Scala and Via Montenapoleone, Mandarin Oriental Hotel Milan offers luxurious rooms and suites, fine dining, as well as private spa. Perfectly curated for all occasions including weddings.

Book Mandarin Oriental Hotel Milan

2.2 | Things to do in Brera Milan

2.2.1 | Explore the picturesque neighbourhood of Brera

Wander aimlessly in the winding streets of this picturesque neighbourhood that has been home to the most influential artists, writers, composers and intellectuals;

2.2.2 | Pinacoteca de Brera

Visit the world class art centre, Pinacoteca de Brera showcasing masterpieces of Raphael, Caravaggio and Piero della Francesca;

2.2.3 | Biblioteca Braidense

Don’t miss the Biblioteca Braidense, one of Italy’s largest and most beautiful libraries, housed within the same walls of Pinacoteca de Brera;

2.2.4 | San Marco Church

Visit San Marco Church which was built in 1254;

2.2.5 | Orto Botanico di Brera

Enjoy the impressive Orto Botanico di Brera, a historic botanical garden that dates back to 1774;

2.2.6 | Local Sunday Market

Go along to the local Sunday market which has plenty to offer on art, fashion and lifestyle goods.

2.3 | Places to Eat in Brera

2.3.1 | Nabucco – for an authentic Milanese dinner;

2.3.2 | Fishbar de Milano – a perfect lunch option;

2.3.3 | Princi – for best coffees!


Navigli is one of the oldest neighbourhoods in Milan and dates back to 1179. It is perfect for nightlife and markets, thus making this area an attractive one for those who want to experience Milanese drinking culture. By day, it is quiet, attracting tourists and families for a good cup of coffee and snacks. It is also a great place to people watch. There are artisan shops, vintage boutiques, bars and cafes. This bustling area is built around two canals, Navigli Grande and Navigli Pavese. These remains from what used to be a network of canals, an important part of Milan’s transport system. Navigli boasts a good selection of accommodation to suit everyone.

Here are our top selection for you:

3.1 | Navigli Hotel and Apartments

Where to stay in Milan


Where to stay in Milan

Reviewed as superb on booking dot com, this affordable luxury hotel features elegant suites in soothing colours, comfort and style. Wooden furniture and leather sofas adds to the luxury of this hotel. Breakfast is available each morning.

Book Magna Pars Hotel


Where to stay in Milan

Maison Borella is an 18th century building located along the banks of Navigli Grande. Accommodation is simple, yet elegant with all rooms air conditioned. Buffet breakfast comes with homemade cakes and fresh fruits while also offering both Milanese as well as Italian cuisines.

Book Maison Borella

3.2 | Things to do in Navigli, Milan

3.2.1 | People watch!

People watch as you sip on an aperitivo;

3.2.2 | Experience an open air antique market

Visit the open air antique market that takes place on the last Sunday of each month;

3.2.3 | Try the gelato!

Taste unique flavours of gelato at Gusto 17;

3.2.4 | Visit the Art galleries in Navigli

Explore art galleries and design studios that line the canal;

3.2.5 | Boat tour of the canals

Take a boat tour of Navigli Grande, the oldest canal in Milan. The Happy Boat Ride of 75-minutes on a Friday or Saturday evening at 7:30 includes aperitivo (Alzaia Naviglio Grande 4).

3.2.6 | Basilica di San Lorenzo

Visit one of the oldest churches in Milan, Basilica di San Lorenzo that dates back to 4th century.

Where to stay in Milan

3.3 | Places to Eat in Navigli

3.3.1 | Erba Brusca — embraces farm to table philosoply;

3.3.2 | Osteria del Binari — traditional Milanese choices.

Timeless Travel Steps:

Navigli Canal Cruise with Audio Guide


Fiera and San Siro are two neighbours located a little out of Zone 1 of the City of Milan. It is an area that is suitable and favoured by families. The area is quiet, lovely with lush parks for children to run around. Fiera/San Siro boasts beautiful shops and cafe lined streets.

A short ride into Milan City centre, gives easy access to the main attractions.

4.1 | Best places to stay in Fiera/San Siro

Where to stay in Milan


Where to Stay in Milan

A luxurious 5-star hotel with a 7th floor spa that offers panoramic views the Enterprise Hotel is located less than a 10-minute walk from Domodossola metro stop and 950 yards from Fiera Milano City. Rooms are elegantly designed with customised furniture, along with free WiFi and tea/coffee making facilities. Breakfast is an American buffet that includes a natural and wellbeing section, with gluten and sugar free products. The tram stops 100 yards away, giving easy access to Milan Cathedral. San Siro Stadium is 2.5 miles from the hotel.

Compare prices, check reviews and Book Enterprise Hotel Design & Boutique


Where to stay in Milan

Conveniently located within 650 yards of Lotto Fiera Metro Station is Hotel Portello. This modern accommodation is within the residential area between Fiera Milano and San Siro Stadium. Offers a buffet breakfast, organic food and gluten-free products.

Compare prices, check reviews and Book Hotel Portello-Gruppo


Where to stay in Milan

Melia is elegantly decorated and is located within a 2-minute walk to Lotto Metro stop. The accommodation offers 24-hour gym, a buffet breakfast, air conditioned and luxurious bedlinens and furniture.

Compare prices, check reviews and Book Melia Milano

4.2 | Things to do in Fiera/San Siro, Milan

4.2.1 | Fun in Parco delle Cave

Take a lovely walk through the beautiful Parco delle Cave – perfect for children to run around and to explore;

4.2.2 | Stadio Giuseppe Meazza

Watch a game at the infamous sports stadium, Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, home of A.C. Milan. Perfect for sports fans especially

4.3 | Places to Eat in Fiera/San Siro

Trattoria Pizzeria dei Platani – Delicious Italian cuisines.


Porto Nuovo is the modern face of Milan. With newly built skyscrapers and contemporary plazas, Porto Nuovo boasts some incredible futuristic looking buildings such as the mirrored Unicredit Tower on Corso Garibaldi. Further down on Corso Como, there is the fabulous Gae Aulenti, home to attractive shops, and buzzing eateries. Porto Nuovo is where the past, present and the future mix with fluidity and elegance.

5.1 | Best places to stay in Porto Nuovo, Milan


Where to stay in Milan

The NH Collection in Porto Nuovo is a modern and elegantly designed air conditioned accommodation featuring an American bar. Conveniently located about 1.2 miles from Milan Cathedral, this hotel is a favourite amongst tourists.

Compare prices, check reviews and Book NH Collection Porto Nuovo

5.2 | Things to do in Porto Nuovo, Milan

5.2.1 | Visit Cargo & High Tech for some memorable souvenirs;

5.2.2 | Explore the Galleria Carla Sozzani for their latest art exhibitions;

5.3 | Places to Eat in Porto Nuova

5.3.1 | Guyot — for mouthwatering risotto;

5.3.2 | 10 Corso Como — for light lunch or tea.

Final thoughts…

So, there you go — a selection of beautiful places to stay in the City of Milan no matter what your interests. Wherever you choose to stay, you are sure to have an awesome time in this beautiful city.

For added value, book a couple of guided tours so your visits to landmark sights are further enriched with information from a tour guide. Also, go on a day trip to surrounding areas like Lake Como, Verona or Venice. For some fabulous ideas on day trips from Milan, go to 12 very best day trips from Milan.

Lastly, don’t forget to sort out your travel insurance. For the best providers of travel insurance, peruse them here. My favourite travel insurance provider is World Nomads because it is quick, simple and straightforward to obtain a quote and off you go.

Have a fabulous time in Milan 🙂

Georgina xx


Where to stay in Milan | timelesstravelsteps.com
Milan: 45° 27′ 51.37″ N 9° 11′ 22.24″ E


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