When talking about having the most wonderful vacation in a country like Italy, you surely would not want to miss its fashion capital: Milan. As one of the most fashionable cities not only in Italy but across the globe, Milan boasts a myriad of shopping malls and renowned fashion brands. If it is hard for you to choose which shopping centers to visit, we are here to help. You should definitely spend an entire day indulging in a pleasant shopping experience at Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II. Comprising four levels right in the heart of Milan, this shopping center is the oldest in Italy. Furthermore, the galleria is also one of this destination’s most popular landmarks. Here is a guide to Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II.
Things to do / Highlights
Before you jump into the stores and restaurants right away, you should know that there are a number of fun activities to do at this mall besides shopping.
Enjoy a stroll on the rooftop area
The Galleria features a rooftop area called Highline Walkway that stretches from Piazza Duomo to Piazza della Scala. From the rooftop area, you will be able to marvel at sweeping views of Milan. To get to the roof, you need to take a high-speed elevator that costs 12 EUR (13 USD) per person.
Admire the zodiac signs on the floors
Pay attention not only to the luxury goods you will find in the stores. Look down and you will see that many of the floors are beautifully decorated with zodiac signs. Find your zodiac and take a selfie with it.
Find Taurus the Bull
Find your way to the octagonal center of the shopping mall and you will see a figure that stands out among the rest: Taurus the Bull. According to the locals, if you are willing to spin the testicles of the bull three times, it will bring you good luck. Try it - you never know.
What to eat
If you wish to savor the authentic taste of Milanese cuisine and embrace the hospitality of the locals, you should plan to stop by Ristorante Galleria on your visit. Whether you only want to sip a cup of Italian espresso or indulge in delectable dishes such as Milanese cotoletta (veal) and risotto Milanese, this elegant restaurant is the place to go. They also serve a selection of pizzas.
Felix Lo Basso
If you are craving Mediterranean dishes, you should head to the top and find your way to Felix Lo Basso. This Michelin-starred restaurant features a spacious terrace that invites all hungry visitors to satisfy their appetite with good food and panoramic vistas in the background. Popular dishes include a roasted pigeon, lamb sausage with celeriac and mushrooms and ancient Greek pasta.
Things to buy
Arguably the most popular shopping center in Milan, the Galleria boasts tons of designer brands, both local and international, all under the same roof. Make use of the 24-hour opening time and return home with all your favorite new items.
From Versace and Prada to Gobbi 1842 and Louis Vuitton, all are ready to deliver the most delightful shopping experience you will ever have in Italy. Who is your favorite designer? Stroll through the entire mall and you will surely find what you like.
Bookworms should make a stop at Libreria Bocca, a charming bookstore that has accommodated the needs of book lovers since the 1930s. You can find books by renowned authors such as Nietzsche, Freud, and Pellico. For your information, the bookstore used to serve as the official printer of the House of Savoy.
If you are looking for high-quality fashion accessories like gloves, handbags, and jewelry, among others, you should stop by upscale stores such as Swarovski, Piumelli Gloves, and Prada Milano Galleria Donna.
Don't pass through Piazza del Duomo in the evening
Since Piazza del Duomo is among the most popular areas in Milan and it is located near the Galleria, it can get extremely crowded at night - you might have a hard time passing through. Avoid the area and take a detour through quieter neighborhoods like Porta Venezia and Isola.
Accessibility to the roof
Though the Highline Walkway is reached via elevators, the passageways are narrow and may not be able to accommodate wheelchairs.
How to get there
Getting here is easy and convenient, so you do not have to worry about getting lost. There are five ways to reach the shopping mall.
If you happen to already be at Piazza del Duomo and its surrounding neighborhood, you can simply walk to the mall. To avoid getting lost, you may want to use Google Maps to help you, but Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II is only a one-minute walk away from the Duomo.
Uber is available in many countries around the world, including Italy. Wherever you are, you can simply book an Uber and it will conveniently take you to the mall from your accommodation.
If you are more of a taxi person, hailing a taxi off the streets is what you should do. The cost will be more or less the same as Uber.
If you want to experience the tram in Italy, take the Line 2 tram and stop at Duomo M1 M3. From the stop, you need to walk for approximately four minutes to reach the shopping center.
The bus that stops by Duomo M1 M3 is Bus N15. Similar to taking a tram, you will need to walk for a bit to get to the mall.
Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II information
Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II
Address: In between Teatro alla Scala and Piazza Duomo, Piazza del Duomo, 20123 Milano MI, Italy
Opening hours: 24 hours (daily)
Department of tourism: Visit Milan
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