Although I didn't have long in Milan I was determined to get in as much as possible while I was here.
Back during the summer, before I left on my trip, I was searching different big cities in Europe's Opera houses and during my search found that at Milan's ridiculously gorgeous opera house, called Teatro alla Scala Svetlana Zakharoza would be performing Sleeping Beauty. In a perfect coincidence it also happened to be the dates I had already planned to go to Milan, needless to say I immediately bought tickets.
Seeing this performance, with that amazing of a ballerina, felt like a dream. Of course as many of you are probably aware of by now I have been a dancer my whole life and have seen many many ballets. This 3 hour ballet definitely went by in about 10 minutes to me. Not only was the performance just perfectly amazing but the theater itself was a beautiful display of architecture, originally being build in the 1770s.
The layout of the theater made me want to pinch myself every 10 minutes to make sure it was real. Every box only holds 6 people and it makes the performance that much more intimate.
After the ballet I sat and marveled at the massive Duomo di Milano. They light it up quite beautifully at night and even though it was raining and cold I sat under my umbrella taking it in and wondering how I got so lucky to be on this amazing trip.
The next day, the only full day I had in Milan, I set out with my Russian host and saw the sites of the city. First stop was the Duomo during the day, quite a difference and much more crowded. I also saw the galleria right adjacent to the cathedral and took a walk through Sempione Park.
Inside the Galleria they have an odd tradition that my new Russian friend told me I had to partake in. In the very center is a mosaic of a bull and it is said if you spin on the bull three times you will have good luck. So many visitors have done this before that there is now a hole in the mosaics. I of course spun around 3 times while she snapped a ridiculous picture of me.
A trip to a european city wouldn't be complete without me spending a decent amount of time in a castle. She took me to Sforza castle which reminded me a lot of Castelveccio in Verona. (LINK)
It was build in the 15th century on the remains of a 14th century fortification. In the 16th and 17th century it was one of the largest citadels in Europe. Now it houses some art museums and exhibits and while I was there they had an interesting water exhibition.
I ended my one day in Milan by partaking in a traditional dinner called Aperitivo. It means you pay for one cocktail and you can take as much food as you would like from their buffet. It was 10€ to join in and so much fun. Tons of young people and a great atmosphere. You can find these in most restaurants all around the city starting at 7pm.
Milan - Quick look
Duomo di Milano €
Sforva Castle - free
Galleria - Free
Tickets to a show at Teatro alla Scala - start at around 60€
Hostels starting at 30€ a bed**
Hotels starting at 150€ a room**
**Prices are incredibly high right now because of the World Expo taking place outside the city - it is over at the end of October 2015 so expect lower prices if traveling after then
Aperitivo - all around the city starting at 10€
Wine bars with drinks starting at 2€ a glass