We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

More time in Milan or Florence?

2 posts
Save Topic
More time in Milan or Florence?

We're planning on a honeymoon trip from Boston, USA to Italy sometime in April next year. Both of us are excited about Rome, especially my husband since he's very into History of Rome podcast. So here's our plan so far.

4 nights in Rome, 3 full days and half a day, our flight arrives around 11:00 AM.

3 nights in Florence, but this means we only have 2 FULL DAYS in Florence.

4 nights in Milan, which means 3 full days in Milan.

After doing some research, most people seem to prefer Florence over Milan, should we do 4 nights in Florence and just 3 nights (2 full days) in Milan?

My husband has visited Venice before and I don't know why I'm more drawn to Milan than Venice... Also we're flying into Rome, but flying out of Milan, and the airfare is reasonably priced and no long layovers. So basically we're sure we wanna do Rome-Florence-Milan but just not sure which city to spend a bit more time in.

PS. Food is extremely important for us. I'm not really a museum person, and love big cities. We've lived in NYC for a few years and I just love the diversity and energy it has. I think this is why I'm favoring Milan over Florence... We spent 6 days in Paris last year and LOVED It. I also spent 5 days in Berlin but didn't have the same emotional attachment as I did when I went to Paris... I know this depends on personal preference but if it were you, would you spend more time in Milan or Florence?

Thanks.

Mentioned in this post
Italy
Italy
Europe
Rome
Rome
Lazio, Italy
Florence
Florence
Province of Florence, Italy
Milan
Milan
Lombardy, Italy
Venice
Venice
City of Venice, Italy
Hotel Florence
Hotel Florence
490 Reviews
Milan, Italy
Paris
Paris
Ile-de-France, France
Berlin
Berlin
Germany
Best Seller
Swiss Alps Bernina Express Rail Tour...
1,271 Reviews
from $150.20*
Best Seller
Lake Como Day Trip from Milan
1,510 Reviews
from $92.00*
Likely To Sell Out
Milan Half-Day Sightseeing Tour with...
3,848 Reviews
from $80.30*
10 replies to this topic
New York City, New...
Level Contributor
44,568 posts
Save Reply
1. Re: More time in Milan or Florence?

I don't care for either Milan or Florence (though I do love the art in Florence, I don't care for the city) - that's why it is so subjective.

My two top favorite cities are Naples and Rome (and return to each often as well as some other Italy spots) - others love Florence, Venice, Milan - etc - There are many choices....

I suggest maybe just reading up more on each option and then figuring out how much time you would need to do what you want to see in each city. Not sure how else to figure out how much time to spend, especially when visiting a new destination.

There are excellent guidebooks for each individual city or you could get one for all of Italy but personally, I think you get much more substantive info when you have a guidebook for each city you plan to visit - your choice.

Mentioned in this post
Milan
Milan
Lombardy, Italy
Florence
Florence
Province of Florence, Italy
Naples
Naples
Province of Naples, Italy
Rome
Rome
Lazio, Italy
Italy
Italy
Europe
Venice
Venice
City of Venice, Italy
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
976 posts
16 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: More time in Milan or Florence?

I would take a Milan night for somewhere else but given your interests I would add a night to Rome. There are so many ancient sites especially if you are listening to the History of Rome podcast (which I love too) that I think you could get a lot more enjoyment immersing yourself in what you have learned. Perhaps do a day trip to Ostia Antica. Or Tarquinia.

Mentioned in this post
Milan
Milan
Lombardy, Italy
Rome
Rome
Lazio, Italy
Tarquinia
Tarquinia
Province of Viterbo, Italy
California
Level Contributor
12,446 posts
56 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: More time in Milan or Florence?

Hi---grab your guidebook, curl up in a cozy chair with paper/pencil/highlighter and perhaps a nice glass of red wine...and have a good read. Make notes of what interests you....

IDEA for 11 days/11 nights, with travel time, fly in Rome/out Milan--

--arrive Rome, 1/2 day

--Rome 4.5 days/5 nights (day trip Orvieto, 3.5 days Rome)

--train to Florence 1/2 day

--Florence 2.5 days/3 nights

--train to Milan 1/2 day

--Milan 2.5 days/3 nights

--fly out Milan

Mentioned in this post
Rome
Rome
Lazio, Italy
Milan
Milan
Lombardy, Italy
Florence
Florence
Province of Florence, Italy
Hong Kong, China
Destination Expert
for Hong Kong, Osaka
Level Contributor
59,906 posts
169 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: More time in Milan or Florence?

I like Florence as a city. It's worth 2-3 days for sure.

On the other hand, central Milan doesn't have much to offer for more than 1-1.5 days when it comes to popular sights to see. Folks typically use Milan as a gateway to Italy and also to near Lake Como. I would spend one day at Milan and then move onto Bologna for a day or two, then onto Florence.

Mentioned in this post
Florence
Florence
Province of Florence, Italy
Milan
Milan
Lombardy, Italy
Italy
Italy
Europe
Lake Como
Lake Como
Lombardy, Italy
Bologna
Bologna
Province of Bologna, Italy
Dublin
Level Contributor
2,311 posts
92 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: More time in Milan or Florence?

Milan has plenty to offer - it’s just not as obvious as other, more touristy, places.

It really depends on what you want to experience.

Central Florence has museums and art around every corner and these areas will be packed with tourists. I’m sure you’ll get plenty of views on this.

Milan, on the other hand, is a real working city, fast-paced and busy with people going about their business - there’s definitely an energy here which you won’t find in the other places.

The main attractions are the Duomo, Galleria, La Scala opera house, the Last Supper (you’ll need to book in advance), and the Sforza castle. There are a number of art galleries and museums, including the science museum, which you might like as it’s a bit different.

Beyond that you have the navigli area with its canals and lively restaurant and nightlife scene, the area extends to the west to include the fashion and hipsterish district around Via Tortona.

If you like modern architecture, there’s the area around Porta Garibaldi / Porta Nuova which as recently been regenerated . Piazza Gae Aulenti, the vertical forrest buildings and the Palazzo Lombardia are well worth a visit.

Corso Como is also here, its a pedestrian street with bars, restaurants and shops (10 Corso Como in particular, is much more than a shop), great place to hang out and watch the world go by. There’s also an Eataly at the far end of the street, as well as the choice of eateries, they also host a lot of events.

If you’re into fashion the area around Via della Spiga / Via Montenapoleone (quadrilatero della moda) is not to be missed for wall to wall high-end shops, the big designers all have showrooms here.

Great choice of restaurants too, and because this is not primarily a tourist destination, you won’t find as many tourist traps as you might elsewhere. You should also try the famous aperitivo / apericena where you pay for one drink and that includes an amazing buffet spread. This was originally set up as an after-work event and usually runs from around 5.00 to 7.30 pm.

Last but not least, you can easily visit Como by train.

Mentioned in this post
Milan
Milan
Lombardy, Italy
Florence
Florence
Province of Florence, Italy
Galleria Restaurant & Pizza
Galleria Restaurant...
1,502 Reviews
Milan, Italy
La Scala Opera
La Scala Opera
6,795 Reviews
Milan, Italy
Porta Garibaldi
Porta Garibaldi
101 Reviews
Milan, Italy
Piazza Gae Aulenti
Piazza Gae Aulenti
2,938 Reviews
Milan, Italy
Palazzo Lombardia
Palazzo Lombardia
348 Reviews
Milan, Italy
Corso Como
Corso Como
247 Reviews
Milan, Italy
Via della Spiga
Via della Spiga
463 Reviews
Milan, Italy
Montenapoleone Suites
Montenapoleone Suites
274 Reviews
Milan, Italy
Como
Como
Lake Como, Italy
NY
Level Contributor
3,831 posts
105 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: More time in Milan or Florence?

It is really up to you but I would shift one day from Milan to Florence, and you might want to use one day for a trip out to Siena, San Gimignano from Florence

The typical sites in Milan - Duomo, Galleria, La Scala opera house (just to visit, not see a performance), the Last Supper can be done in full day, if you carefully book the Last Supper. I went to the castle and the museum inside mainly because it was on the way from the Duomo to the Last Supper, I would not consider it a must do.

Mentioned in this post
Milan
Milan
Lombardy, Italy
Florence
Florence
Province of Florence, Italy
Siena
Siena
Province of Siena, Italy
San Gimignano
San Gimignano
Province of Siena, Italy
Galleria Restaurant & Pizza
Galleria Restaurant...
1,502 Reviews
Milan, Italy
La Scala Opera
La Scala Opera
6,795 Reviews
Milan, Italy
Akron, Ohio
Level Contributor
1,426 posts
495 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: More time in Milan or Florence?

My advice is to shift one or two days to Florence. Surrounding Florence are many sights-towns worth your time.

Mentioned in this post
Florence
Florence
Province of Florence, Italy
Tennessee
Destination Expert
for Chattanooga, Blowing Rock, North Carolina Mountains
Level Contributor
9,006 posts
146 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: More time in Milan or Florence?

I am not into Florence or Milan. They are crowded, noisey, filled with mopeds and too many people.

Have you considered any of the hill towns? The countryside, hill towns and old world atmosphere, are history, cultures and each so unique.

I suggest a few days of countryside and unique, interesting walled towns.

Experience another lifestyle of Italy.

Mentioned in this post
Florence
Florence
Province of Florence, Italy
Milan
Milan
Lombardy, Italy
Italy
Italy
Europe
Kalispell, Montana...
Level Contributor
1,883 posts
17 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: More time in Milan or Florence?

I never suggest 2 night stays, but given how little time you have and the city's you have chosen I would go with 2 nights Milan and add a night to each Florence and Rome (or just both to Rome, or just do Florence and Rome and skip Milan).

Mentioned in this post
Milan
Milan
Lombardy, Italy
Florence
Florence
Province of Florence, Italy
Rome
Rome
Lazio, Italy
2 posts
Save Reply
10. Re: More time in Milan or Florence?

Thank you all for the suggestions.

We've decided to do

5 nights in Rome - with a day trip to Ostia Antica or Orvieto.

4 nights in Florence - with a day trip to somewhere or half day trip to Pisa. (My husband has been to Cinque Terre...)

2 nights in Milan- Last Supper and Duomo basically.

Thanks!

Mentioned in this post
Rome
Rome
Lazio, Italy
Orvieto
Orvieto
Province of Terni, Italy
Florence
Florence
Province of Florence, Italy
Pisa
Pisa
Province of Pisa, Italy
Cinque Terre
Cinque Terre
Italian Riviera, Italy
Milan
Milan
Lombardy, Italy
Reply to: More time in Milan or Florence?
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted