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2 Days in Milan Itinerary: The Perfect Way to Spend 48 Hours in Milan!

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Visiting Milan for two days and in search of the perfect 2 days in Milan Itinerary? Well, look no further, as in this guide I’ll help you plan the perfect visit to this gorgeous Italian city!

Milan is like Rome’s less touristy cousin. It’s a city still packed with history and fantastic museums, but without such crazy tourist crowds. If you’re travelling around Italy, spending at least a little bit of time in Milan is something you should definitely squeeze into your trip.

Whilst one day in Milan may feel frantic, two days in Milan is enough to see the city’s major attractions without feeling too rushed or overwhelmed. Planning any trip can be a bit stressful, though, especially when you’re on a tight schedule: fitting everything in can be a challenge.

If you’re wondering what’s worthwhile to see during your vacation, check out this ultimate Milan in 2 days itinerary. From an overview of accommodation to the best museums in the city, we’ve got all the bases covered for you to plan your trip.

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Pssst…Have you packed all your essentials? Make sure to read our European packing list post to ensure you’ve ticked all the packing necessities off your list!

How to Get to Milan: Milan Itinerary 2 Days

Most travellers visiting Milan will fly into the city. There are three different international airports serving the Milan and Lombardy area, the largest of which is the Milan Malpensa Airport.

Unfortunately, all three of the airports are rather far from the city centre, so you’ll need to arrange transportation to the city. Buses and trains are available, or you can book a transfer service for a direct ride to your hotel.

If you’re travelling around other places in Italy, you may want to consider arriving in Milan by train. A train journey from Milan to Rome is about three hours, and from Milan to Venice it’s only about two hours. This way, you’ll also get to see more of the country as you’re travelling.

How to Travel around Milan in 2 Days

Getting around Milan in 2 days

Milan has a smooth-operating public transportation system that can take you almost anywhere in the city.

Thankfully, most of Milan’s top attractions are found in the city centre, which is relatively compact. If you only visit Milan in two days and you have central accommodation, you’ll probably be able to walk everywhere you want to go.

If you do need to travel somewhere a bit further afield, there are metro lines, trams, public buses, and taxis – all of which are reasonably accessible and easy to use.

If you do plan on cramming in more sights than listed in this itinerary during your stay, then booking a Milan Pass for 48 hours may be a worthwhile consideration.

Another great way to squeeze as much time as possible out of your short time in the city is to book a Milan Hop-On Hop-Off sightseeing bus tour. This allows you to view all the major sights at a glance and decide for yourself which ones you’d like to return back to later! 

2 Day Itinerary in Milan: Where to Stay in Milan

In comparison with Rome or even Florence, Milan is a bit smaller and not quite as expensive. However, if you leave reserving a hotel to the last minute, it can be difficult to find an affordable place or one with a good location. 

For your 2 day Milan itinerary, you’ll want to stay close to the city centre, preferably near the Milan Cathedral or La Scala. This will ensure you’ll be within walking distance of most top attractions. Generally, centrally located mid-range hotels cost about €100.

If you’re on a tight budget or prefer to be a bit more removed from the central tourist area, you can find hotels for around €50 per night outside the centre.

Unfortunately for backpackers, there isn’t a great selection of hostels in the city, and most tend to be fairly expensive. If you’re travelling alone, staying at a hostel still might be worth the price, but if you’re in a group, it’s usually better to book a hotel room or a serviced apartment.

Best Hotel near the Piazza del Duomo – The Square Milan Duomo

Best Affordable Luxury Hotel in Milan – Hotel Dei Cavalieri Milano Duomo 

Best Apartment-Hotel in Milan – Duomo Apartment: Galleria Unione 

If you like the idea of having your own serviced apartment, then you may also want to search and book for the perfect Milan VRBO options too – click to view Milan VRBO apartments

Day 1: What To Do In Milan for 2 Days

Now that you know the basics of transportation and accommodation, it’s time to plan out your Milan two day itinerary. Start your day on the right foot by grabbing coffee and breakfast at your accommodation or a local café before heading out to explore.

Stop 1: Duomo di Milano (Milan Cathedral)

Duomo Milan - 2 days Itinerary

It should come as no surprise that Milan’s most recognizable landmark is the first stop on the list. One of the largest cathedrals in the world, the Duomo di Milano is truly an incredible sight to behold and one of the top things to see in Milan in 2 days. To make the most of your day, try to arrive at the cathedral no later than 10 am.

Once you’ve toured the inside of the cathedral, either take the stairs of the elevator (beware of long lines here!) up to the top of the dome. The view over the city is spectacular, and even more rewarding if you decided to hike the steep staircase to the top.

Stop 2: La Scala

Once you’ve finished getting photos of Milan from the lofty vantage point at the top of the cathedral, come back to the ground and head toward the Piazza de la Scala, home to the Milan opera house. 

There are La Scala guided tours of the interior of the theatre offered throughout the day, which is definitely recommended to include in your Milan 2 days itinerary. Once you’re done with the tour and finished looking through the La Scala Museum, head back out to the Piazza to grab a bite to eat at one of the local restaurants.

Stop 3: Santa Maria delle Grazie

Santa Maria delle Grazie

When you’ve finished with lunch, take the metro to the Cardona station. The Santa Maria delle Grazie church is located right next to the station and is home to Leonardo da Vinci’s masterpiece The Last Supper.

Instead of being hung in a museum gallery like many famous paintings, The Last Supper still resides in the monastery that Da Vinci created the piece for.

To include this stop on your Milan 2 day itinerary, you’ll need to purchase tickets ahead of time. Be warned; sometimes tickets have sold out months in advance!

Stop 4: Museums and historic sites

The best way to soak up the atmosphere and experience Milan is by exploring on foot.

Not far from the Santa Maria delle Grazie are several other interesting places to visit. Two of Milan’s best museums – the Pinacoteca Ambrosiana and the Archaeological Museum of Milan – are both worth a stop, especially if you enjoy art.  

You can also make a stop at the Basilica di Sant’Ambrogio, one of Milan’s most noteworthy churches. It’s considered one of the best-preserved examples of Lombard Romanesque architecture, and it’s worth at least stopping by to get a few photos.

At the end of a long day, and should you still have some energy reserves left after all the sightseeing, then you could opt for a 2-Hour Night Walking Tour of Milan. Or better yet, fill your belly on this Milan 2-Hour Private Aperitivo Tour instead. 

Day 2: What To Do In Milan In 2 Days

Now that you’ve seen the major architectural landmarks of Milan, it’s time to explore other parts of the city on your second day. 

Stop 1: Cimitero Monumentale

Milan’s large and central cemetery feels more like an art museum than a graveyard. The truly spectacular carvings and tombstones make this a must-visit during a 2 day trip to Milan.

The cemetery covers more than 250,000 square meters, and some of Italy’s best-known musicians, architects, and actors are buried here. Grab a map from the entrance of the cemetery; it will show you where exceptionally impressive tombstones and carvings are located.

Stop 2: Milan Shopping Streets

Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II - 1 Day Milan Itinerary

No trip to Milan would be complete without at least checking out the shopping areas the city is so famous for. Whether you try to stay up to date with the latest fashions or not, everyone can appreciate the glitz and glamour of Milan.

Milan is a hub of activity in the fashion industry, as well as a shopper’s paradise. The Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II is by far the most famous shopping centre in Milan, and also a beautiful historic landmark.

You can also check out the nearby Via Montenapoleone, full of designer boutiques. Be warned; prices at both spots can be very high, but it’s definitely worth window shopping even if you don’t purchase anything.   

Stop 3: Sightseeing at Piazza Mercanti

After your shopping excursion, head back to the Piazza del Duomo and follow Via Mercanti to the Piazza Mercanti.

The Piazza Mercanti has some of Milan’s most notable historic buildings and is a great place to get some souvenir photos of your trip. Admire the Palazzo della Regione, which used to house the justice courts of Milan, and the Palazzo delle Scuole Palatine, which was the most important school in Milan during the Middle Ages.

There are plenty of great restaurants in this area, including one housed in the Casa dei Panigarola, a magnificently preserved Gothic-style building. Be sure to try as many local delicacies as you can during your 2 days in Milan Italy, like Caprese salad, bresaola (ages and salted beef), arancini (stuffed pasta or rice balls), and Italy’s famous tiramisu for dessert.

Stop 4: Sforzesco Castle and Museums 

Sforzesco Castle

Touring the Piazza Mercanti usually doesn’t take too much time, so once you’re done, follow the Via Mercanti to the Via Dante, where you’ll come to the Castello Sforzesco. This fortress dates to 1368 and today house a collection of museums, including the Museum of Ancient Art, the Egyptian Museum, and the Applied Arts Collection.

The entrance ticket to the castle includes all the museums with it. However, if you’re tired and not interested in seeing the museums, you can still visit the interior courtyard of the fortress free of charge, then find a nice café or restaurant where you can relax and enjoy the last hours of your 2-day trip to Milan.