Best Neighbourhoods in Milan

Exploring the best neighbourhoods in Milan 

Being one of the most scenic and unique cities in Europe, Milan does not make it easy for travellers to plan their trip. With so many extraordinary places, you may find it difficult to pick the ones that you want to see during your Italian adventure. Since it is a big city, you might want to start your planning by choosing the best neighbourhoods in Milan to explore. 

Considering the city of fashion and architecture is quite big, this can also be a difficult decision. When you are presented with an abundance of alternatives, you may get confused about what should be included in your itinerary. That is why using some guidelines can be helpful, especially if this is the first time visiting this gorgeous place. 

To make things easier for you, I have created a list of the best Milan neighbourhoods along with their features and offerings. Narrowing down these things will help you decide what you want to see and experience during your stay. It might still be difficult since Lomabrdy’s Capital is quite versatile, and each part of it offers something thrilling and enticing. However, it will surely help you find the activities you want and the features that align with your preferences.

SANTA MARIA delle Grazia | Best neighbourhoods in milan

What Are The Best Milan Neighbourhoods?

Finding the best neighbourhoods in Milan will help you determine several things for your trip. First, you will find out where to stay in the city. Second, you will find which places to explore during your visit. When you sort these things out, your planning becomes much easier, and you know where and what exactly to look for. 

Figuring out the most popular Milan neighbourhoods to stay in starts with extensive research on the city’s greatest spots. This research can take hours since we are talking about a big and extremely popular city. Some people even spend a whole day searching for information on the most visited locations and accommodations around Milan.

Things get easier when someone has made a good selection for you, and your only job would be to pick one. That is what I have done: a guide that will ease up your planning process. So, let’s explore Milan together and see what suits you best! 

Best neighbourhoods in Milan | Duomo di Milan

Brera – The Boho Treasure of Milan 

Brera is one of the most interesting places in the city, and it has a rich history. I refer to this neighbourhood as the boho treasure because of its artistic and bohemian past. Namely, this spot used to be a hub for artists and poets who spent their days creating art and making this area more versatile. 

Today, Brera is a centre for business people, and it has obtained a fancier appearance. The boho bars have been transformed into sophisticated cocktail places where you can enjoy a beverage with a view. Meanwhile, those old artistic ateliers have been turned into chic art galleries. Despite all these changes, Brera has retained its unique charm and boho spirit. It is still considered one of the best neighbourhoods in Milan where you can experience distinctive and the most beautiful architecture. 

Moreover, its old spirit and magnificent surroundings provide locals and tourists with the most romantic atmosphere. This is a top Milan area where you can find the most astonishing designer furniture, witness the most spectacular works of art, and find the best perfumes with unforgettable scents. 

If you stay in this neighbourhood, expect each day to be different! Even though this Milanese neighbourhood has undergone a lot of changes, there is still that artistic spirit in the air every tourist wants to indulge during their visit. Exploring this area is a must! So, even if your accommodation is not in this vicinity, make sure to dedicate a couple hours to wandering around Brera.

Pinacoteca di brera | Museums in Italy
The Kiss - Pinacoteca di Brera

The famous art gallery Pinacoteca di Brea is in the Brera area of Milan. It features several well-known works such as “The Kiss”

Sempione – The Green Gem of Milan 

This Milanese neighbourhood has got its name due to the largest park and most fascinating in this area – Parco Sempione. Not only is it the largest park in the city, but it is also the most fascinating one. This is part of Milan, surrounded by lavish greenery and exceptional breathtaking landscapes. On one side of the park, you will see Sforzesco Castle. Meanwhile, on the other, the great Arco della Pace. It is quite scenic, so both locals and tourists enjoy taking long walks, admiring the natural ambience. 

Also, this is one of the best neighbourhoods to stay in Milan when travelling with the entire family. It is close to the city centre and away from the loud Milanese nightlife, which is convenient for people who travel with children. You can still reach the centre on foot but not witness the loud noise of the night crowds. 

Moreover, considering it is in the city’s central area, there are all the necessary amenities you might need during your stay. If you do not feel like walking, Sempione has numerous bus and tram stops. Therefore, you can easily commute from one location to another and not waste time strolling.

Best neighbourhoods in Milan | Parco Sempione

A view of Parco Sempione with the Arco delle Pace in the background.

Navigli – The Mini Version of Venice 

Navigli is one of the best neighbourhoods in Milan for those who enjoy a relaxed and informal vicinity. It is often referred to as a mini version of Venice due to its canals, which were used for trade in the past. Nowadays, these areas are full of people who like to take advantage of the cute bars and restaurants. It is quite a vibrant part of Milan where the fun never stops! 

This is the perfect spot to explore when you want to find authentic places. For instance, inspiring bookstores with rare books, or creative boutiques where art takes centre stage. Additionally, Navigli is one of the most colourful neighbourhoods in Milan covered with graffiti walls and buildings in vivid hues. Therefore, if you are looking for creative Instagrammable spots, this area will not disappoint you. Ensure to wear vibrant attire to match the surroundings and take memorable photos of your trip. 

If you are lucky, you may even witness the big transformation of the canals into an exciting antique market where people sell everything you can possibly imagine. Those who are great fans of vintage furniture can find astonishing pieces you cannot find anywhere else. Moreover, comic book collectors will also be surprised by the great selection of old comics found on the market.

Best neighbourhoods in Milan | Navigli

Isola – The Trendy Hub That Never Sleeps 

When looking for the best neighbourhoods in Milan for exciting nightlife, look no further than Isola! Isola, which in translation means an island, is one of the most exquisite and unique parts of the city. It is chic, trendy, and a great location to spend your Milanese nights. 

In the past, this area of the city used to be tough and a target for police raids. Nonetheless, nowadays, it is among the best spots for fine dining and shopping. The area is abundant with stylish cafes and bars, astonishing restaurants with delicious food and chic stores and boutiques where you can buy authentic souvenirs to take back home. There, you can even find second-hand shops for unique things that cannot be bought anywhere else. 

In recent years, Isola has been updated with a new part called Porta Nuova. The new area brought a new appearance to the neighbourhood, with skyscrapers and majestic buildings that refreshed the entire ambience of Isola. This is a place where you can spot revolutionary and modern buildings, such as the famous Bosco Verticale or Vertical Forest. Nonetheless, at its core, Isola still retains its artistic character and vibrancy.

If you do not mind crowds, you can consider finding accommodation in this area. But Isola might not be the most popular neighbourhoods in Milan if you are travelling with kids. Even though children love colourfulness and whimsicalness, this might not be the most suitable place for them at night.

Best neighbourhoods in Milan | Unicredit Building
Bosco Verticale | Milan | Milan in a day

The Bosco Verticale and the UniCredit Tower (the tallest building in Milan) are in this area

Porta Venezia – The Artistic Area of Milan 

If you are looking for timelessness and art in the heart of Milan, Porta Venezia is where you will find these features. There are numerous art galleries around this Milanese region, great for exploring the artistic side of the city. In addition to the breathtaking art, this neighbourhood is home to one of the most romantic parks in town. Giardini Pubblici Indro Montanelli. It is a beautiful place and the most fascinating  Milan sights where intimacy and romance come together.

Porta Venezia is absolutely one of the best neighbourhoods in Milan to explore when you want to change the scenery from the classical appearance. It is a top Milan area suitable for fun activities for different generations. 

Due to artistic improvements and developments in recent years, Porta Venezia is known as a hub for the rich. However, there are still students and families living in more affordable establishments. You can also find some cheap restaurants, meaning you do not have to spend a fortune to visit this sophisticated part of Milan.

Quadrilatero d’Oro – The Centre of Luxury and Fashion

Everyone knows that Milan is the main European centre of luxury and fashion. Therefore, you cannot visit the city without taking a glimpse at the world of elegance and sophistication. Quadrilatero d’Oro, or “The Golden Rectangle”, is where all the posh shops and boutiques are located.

It is definitely the most glamorous area of the city, so it would be a pity not to explore it for a while. Just taking a peek at all that refinement will make you feel like you are in some kind of movie. This is heaven for fashionistas and people who enjoy luxurious settings. Also, it is a spot where you will see all the latest designs in the world of fashion. 

Besides the high-end stores and haute couture, this is an area with the most glamorous architecture. The entire neighbourhood is surrounded by elegant buildings and polished restaurants where fine dining is taken to another level. If you are not keen on shopping in extravagant stores, then you may want to experience a lunch or dinner in the most sophisticated neighbourhood in the city. 

While this is a magical area to explore, it might not be one of the best neighbourhoods to stay in Milan. Considering the elegance and luxury that characterise this part, you can only guess the hotel rates. You may be lucky and find some deals, but this is certainly not the cheapest place in town.

Best neighbourhoods in Milan | Montenapoleone
casa museo bagatti valsecchi |Best neighbourhoods in Milan

Corso Como – The Paradise of Trendsetters 

If you are looking for the best neighbourhoods in Milan with the trendiest features, then you need to see Corso Como. This is where you will see the best-dressed people with unique and fashionable styles. Moreover, there are numerous chic stores where you can find items that will set you apart from the crowds. It is a place where you will spend an entire day admiring treasures that look like from another galaxy. 

If you are not into shopping, then you should visit some of the majestically stylish restaurants and bars situated all over the neighbourhood. Also, this is another area where nightlife takes centre stage. Once it gets dark, the streets turn into sparkly places full of people, bars, and nightclubs. 

With that in mind, Corso Como is the place that you should put on your itinerary when you want to experience the extravagance of Milan by day or night! Furthermore, do not forget to check out the classy or modish dresses and suits.

Our list of Popular neighbourhoods in Milan

Looking for the best neighbourhoods in Milan is fun but also overwhelming. You will find an abundance of spectacular areas but will not be able to decide where to go. Now, you have a list of the most fascinating locations and their properties, so you can pick the area that has all you need. Hopefully, these guidelines will help you create the itinerary you desire for your Milan adventure! 

For more travel advice about Italy, do not forget to take a peek at my blog page. If you’re looking to take a day trip from Milan, we have some suggestions for you in our Best day trips from Milan post.   


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