Best Things to do in Milan for Couples (and 17 fun date ideas!)

April 26, 2024

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Italy is truly one of the most romantic travel destinations in the world filled with romantic spots! We’ll show you fun date ideas in Milan and why is a perfect place for a marriage proposal, honeymoon, or simply a couples getaway.

This list will leave you with memories that will last a lifetime – from the Duomo di Milano in Piazza del Duomo, to Castello Sforzesco, to the Tour of Da Vinci’s Last Supper and Church of Santa Maria, to the luxurious shopping of Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II!

With Milan being Italy’s 2nd largest city, and with several flight connections from all across the continent, it’s the ideal spot for a quick getaway from anywhere in Europe.

We recently traveled to Milan, and across 10 Italian cities with 24 hours in Florence, 2 days in Cinque Terre, one day in Venice, and had so much fun! We can’t wait to go back to Italy.

We’ll also be covering the best things to do as a couple in Milan, how to get to Milan, where to stay, and expert tips. Before you go, download our recommend Italy travel apps.

Romantic Things to Do in Milan for Couples

1. Explore Milan’s City Center

Milan City Center is absolutely stunning and one of the most romantic things to do in Milan. Take a leisurely stroll through Milan’s city center to soak in the lively atmosphere and snapping photos of the grandeur surrounding you.

Save our list of best apps for Italy. These apps for Italy came in super handy for booking everything from trains, taxis, food, tours, tickets to museums, cooking classes and more.

In the evening, enjoy a dinner at the wide range of romantic restaurants in Milan, where you can giggle over delectable Italian cuisine and cheeses in a cozy, intimate setting.

2. Duomo di Milano

One of the most romantic things to do in Italy to visit the Duomo di Milano. The Milan Duomo is the symbol of Milan’s architectural scene and one of the most beloved landmarks in Italy’s fashion capital. This magnificent Gothic cathedral, the third largest in the world, has captivated visitors for centuries with its intricate marble façade, soaring spires and terraces, and awe-inspiring stained-glass windows.

Before visiting the Milan Duomo, read our guide on Milan Duomo dress code, what to wear, and what NOT to wear to meet it’s strict dress code.

Construction began in 1386 and spanned over six centuries, reflecting the evolution of Gothic architecture. We highly recommend booking a fast track ticket to both the Cathedral and Duomo Terraces rooftop for breathtaking panoramic views of the city, then venture into the terraces of the cathedral to marvel at its intricate carvings and sculptures. You can also opt for a guided tour of Duomo di Milano and here is the best one.

Romantic Date in Milan at the Duomo Milan rooftop

Did you know that the Milan Cathedral is still under construction after 6 centuries? New statues are still being carved out as we speak!

If I were to name a romantic place you might go on a date in Milan, it would be the Duomo di Milano. We were absolutely mesmerized by the intricate details of the façade and the stunning roof top terraces!

Expert Tips for Visiting the Milan Duomo

3. Piazza Del Duomo (Cathedral Square) City Center

Piazza del Duomo, the bustling square surrounding the Duomo di Milano, serves as the epicenter of Milan’s social and cultural life. Teeming with life, this piazza offers a captivating blend of architectural buildings, lively cafes, and bustling shops.

Spend a couple of hours shopping or admire the grandeur of the Palazzo Reale, the former royal palace, or indulge in a leisurely aperitivo and cappuccinos at one of the many cafes.

We loved leisurely shopping, taking in the lively atmosphere and admiring the impressive architecture! It was inspiring to see how the city center hosted so many events for the community including international wine events and more.

Deeshen sat sipping on a cup of Italian espresso while people-watching and soaking up the vibrant energy of Milan!

4. Go Shopping at Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II

Step into the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, a stunning 19th-century arcade that epitomizes Milan’s elegance and luxury. This captivating luxury mall and passageway is one of the world’s oldest shopping malls!

You’ll be surprised to see that it’s decorated with ornate glass vaults and intricate ironwork, and houses a collection of upscale boutiques, iconic brands like Dior and Chanel, renowned restaurants, and historic cafes.

The soaring glass dome and ornate architecture provided a stunning backdrop for a romantic stroll. We indulged in some shopping and treated ourselves to coffee at one of the charming cafes in this iconic landmark.

5. Castello Sforzesco (Sforzesco Castle)

No visit to Milan would be complete without exploring the historic Castello Sforzesco,.

Castello Sforzesco, a 15th-century fortress with beautiful grounds that tell Milan’s history. Once the residence of the Sforza family, the castle now houses a collection of museums, art galleries, gardens, and cultural institutions.

Explore the Pinacoteca di Brera, home to renowned Italian masterpieces, or delve into the Museo del Castello Sforzesco, showcasing artifacts from the castle’s rich past. Wander through the castle’s courtyards and gardens, imagining the grandeur of bygone eras.

This imposing fortress houses museums and art collections, providing insight into Milan’s rich cultural heritage. We were captivated by the grandeur of the castle and had so much fun during our photoshoot exploring its grounds, imagining ourselves as medieval nobility roaming the ancient halls!

The best place to book your ticket to Sforza Castle is here, and it comes with a self-guided digital audio guide where you can explore the museum and art collection at your own pace. For a guided tour, this Sforza Castle and Michelangelo’s Pietà Rondanini Tour is a great 5 star rated tour, perfect for art and history lovers!

6. Arco della Pace (Arch of Peace)

Located at the western end of Corso Sempione, the Arco della Pace (Arch of Peace) stands as a majestic tribute to peace and victory. Commissioned by Napoleon in 1807, this neoclassical monument features intricate sculptures depicting scenes of conquest and triumph.

7. Sign up for a Cooking Class

Of course, Cooking together is even better than sharing a meal! Cooking classes are such a fun date idea in Milan.

Italy is well-known for its pizza, pasta, and desserts, so taking a cooking lesson in Milan is the perfect and fun date night! Learning how to prepare Italian cuisine is an exciting experience that you can take home and surprise your friends with.

There are classes available for making pasta, pizza, tiramisu, risotto, and many other dishes. Check out some of Milan’s best cooking classes here.

Of course, the best part of any lesson is getting to eat all the delicious food you’ve prepared afterwards!

8. Do a Romantic Photoshoot

This was one of my favorite experiences from our vacation to Milan, and it provided us with some fantastic memories and images.

We identified and hired our photographer through Airbnb experiences. The woman we met was quite helpful and showed us some of the better sites. Don’t worry if you’ve never done a photo session before. You do not need to be a model to take beautiful shots. The photographer will tell you what to do, and most importantly, have fun!

Booking a local photographer allows you to visit some of the city’s hidden gems that you would otherwise miss. We ended up with dozens of incredible images that we would never have been able to take by ourselves.

It’s one of the absolute best ways to share your journey with friends and family back home. It’s an excellent idea, especially if you’re celebrating a big occasion. Your travel memories will be beautifully documented forever.

Couple in front of Sforza Castle Photographed.

Our photographer, Ana De Martino, in Milan was amazing! You can book a Milan photography experience with Ana on Airbnb here.

9. Take a Romantic Walk at Parco Sempione (Sempione Park)

Parco Sempione, a romantic city park in the heart of Milan, offers an oasis escape from the city’s hustle and bustle. It one of the most relaxing things to do in Milan, and is so peaceful!

Stroll along tree-lined paths, cuddle by the tranquil lake, or admire the neoclassical architecture of the nearby majestic Arco della Pace.

We made our way to from the Piazza Del Duomo to Parco Sempione in just a 10 minute walk. This picturesque park offers plenty of spots for couples to enjoy a romantic picnic. We found ourselves lost in conversation as we wandered through the park listening the song birds!

10. Go on a Bike Tour

Taking a bike trip across Milan is a fun and easy way to see the city. It’s an excellent method to mix enjoyment, learning, laughter, and fitness together. Learning about the city’s history and culture while exploring it on two wheels with your significant other will be a lot of fun.

Bike excursions usually provide a sense of independence, and you can see so much of the area in only a few hours. Check out this popular option that takes you to view some of the city’s prominent attractions, including Sforza Castle, Arco della Pace, the skyscrapers district, historic canal lock, and St. Maria delle Grazie.

11. Santa Maria delle Grazie (Church of Santa Maria)

Santa Maria delle Grazie, a Dominican convent, houses one of the world’s most celebrated artistic treasures: Leonardo da Vinci’s “The Last Supper.” This awe-inspiring mural, depicting Jesus Christ’s final meal with his apostles, is a testament to da Vinci’s genius. If you love art or if you’re a history buff, you’ll love this Santa Maria delle Grazie tour!

Be sure to reserve tickets in advance to see Leonardo da Vinci’s masterpiece, The Last Supper, at Santa Maria delle Grazie. Witnessing these iconic artworks is a moving experience, and will surely deepen your appreciation for art and history.

12. Teatro alla Scala

Teatro alla Scala, the world-renowned opera house, is a pinnacle of Milan’s cultural scene. Since its inauguration in 1778, this iconic theater has hosted legendary opera performances, ballet productions, and classical concerts. It’s one of the unique and unusual things to do in Milan.

If you’re interested in seeing this grandeur theater and learning about its musical geniuses, this is the best guided tour for La Scala Museum and Theater.

Teatro alla Scala is one of the most prestigious opera houses in the world and attending experiencing the enchanting world of opera is definitely a lifetime experience.

13. Piccolo Teatro in Milan (Little Theatre of Milan)

Another highlight of our romantic weekend in Milan was the Piccolo Teatro di Milano, affectionately known as the “Little Theatre.” Piccolo Teatro di Milano is a renowned institution dedicated to the performing arts, and Italy’s first permanent repertory theater.

This intimate theater, inaugurated in 1947, has hosted a plethora of world class productions, from opera and ballet to contemporary plays and experimental performances.

14.  Take an evening walk along the Naviglio Grande Canal

The Naviglio Grande is one of the city’s most romantic neighborhoods. Make sure to spend at least one evening strolling along the Naviglio Grande Canal together, it’s truly one of the romantic things to do in Milan at night watching the city lights sparkle by the river.

There’s so many incredible architecture to see and admire even at sunset and at night.

After your walk, visit a nearby café along the canal to enjoy the scenery and folks going by. This would be an ideal way to spend your final night in the city, reflecting on your journey together.

15.  Enjoy as many Aperitivos as you can!

Aperitivos are an integral aspect of Italian culture. It is generally a pre-dinner drink, but it is also an excellent strategy to save money.

If you’re wondering what to do in milan at night, Aperitivos allow you to relax in a restaurant and talk for hours while enjoying excellent drinks and appetizers.

It’s the ideal way to begin a romantic evening together. Any couple’s trip is about spending quality time together, and what better way to do that than with a calming drink or two.

16.  Share Italian Gelato Together

Grom is a popular gelateria located on Via Santa Margherita, just a short walk north of the Duomo.

There are over a dozen flavors to pick from, including classics like salted caramel and crème come una volta (pastry cream gelato with corn crackers and chocolate chips).

The line can be long at times of the day, but service is quick because the crew behind the counter takes orders and scoops the various flavors into cups and cones.

17.  Have a Romantic Evening Dinner in Milan Together

Being Italy’s 2nd largest city, Milan has some of the most diverse cuisine in all of Italy. Aside from delicious pizza, we were shocked to find authentic Szechuan cuisine in the heart of Milan’s City Center here.

There were also so many romantic restaurants in Milan to dine at, from upscale atmosphere, to cute cafes, and pizzerias!

Alternatively, you could grab a pizza and eat it at Parco Sempione (Sempione Park)! We loved Nietta Pizzeria Friggitoria.

Best Things to Do as a Couple in Milan – Additional FAQS

  1. What are romantic things to do in Milan Italy? There’s so many romantic things to do in Milan! Explore Milan’s City Center for a leisurely stroll through its lively atmosphere and grandeur, visit the iconic Duomo di Milano to marvel at its intricate details, and experience the bustling Piazza Del Duomo, surrounded by architectural beauty, cafes, and shops.
  2. What are fun date ideas in Milan?
    Enjoy a hands-on cooking class together, where you can learn to prepare delicious Italian cuisine, or capture your memories with a romantic photoshoot, exploring hidden gems with a professional photographer, and embark on a bike tour to discover the city’s history and culture on two wheels.
  3. What about creative date ideas in Milan?
    Take an evening walk along the enchanting Naviglio Grande Canal, admiring the city lights and reflecting on your journey together, or indulge in delightful Italian gelato from Grom as you stroll through Milan’s streets, sharing sweet moments together.
  4. What are the top 5 romantic restaurants in Milan?
    From upscale atmospheres to cozy cafes and pizzerias, Milan offers diverse dining options for couples. Consider Nietta Pizzeria Friggitoria and authentic Szechuan cuisine in the city center for a romantic dining experience.
  5. What are good places to propose in Milan?
    The rooftop terraces of the Milan Duomo is a breathtaking backdrop for a memorable marriage proposal, offering panoramic views of the cityscape and creating an unforgettable moment for couples.

    If I were to get proposed to again in Italy, I would want Deeshen to propose to me there! (We’re already married though, haha!)
  6. What are the most romantic boutique hotels in Milan to stay at for all budget types?
    Milan’s boutique hotels cater to various budgets, offering romantic accommodations for couples.
    Our favorite romantic boutique hotels in Milan are Hotel Indigo Milan – Corso Monforte a boutique hotel with the most amazing customer service in the heart of the City Center, Sonder Atelier a modern upscale hotel with chic designs, and the Grand Visconti Palace – a luxurious palace stay.

    Or, if you want something more comforts of a home, the Corte Dei Florio apartment or Sweet Home Downtown Milan are fabulous options for a romantic getaway with a luxurious kitchen and living spaces.
  7. What is the best area and safest area to stay in for a romantic getaway in Milan?
    Brera, Navigli, and the Milan city center near the Duomo are all great choices for a romantic and safe getaway. Milan is generally safe, but as always, be aware of your surroundings, especially at night.

Where to Stay in Milan

We absolutely loved staying at Hotel Indigo Milan for 3 nights, 6 minutes walk from the Duomo di Milano!

Seeing as you’ll be visiting the city for two days, the best place to stay in Milan is the Centro Storico district. This is the city’s center and the ideal area to stay for easy access to the Duomo and top sites.

Book your stay at Hotel Indigo Milan, a luxurious boutique hotel with renaissance charm (and top notch service!), that’s only 6 minutes walk from the Duomo di Milano

Or, if you want something more comforts of a home, the Corte Dei Florio apartment or Sweet Home Downtown Milan are fabulous options for a romantic getaway with a luxurious kitchen and living spaces.

Getting to Milan

As Italy’s second biggest city and as the financial and fashion capital of Italy, Milan has great transportation connections across Italy and to the rest of Europe. 

Heading to Milan from another Italian city? Trains are the easiest and fastest way to travel from city to city across Italy. Deeshen booked ALL our Italy train tickets across 10 cities (including Milan) in less than two hours using the Trenitalia website and app. (I must admit, I was impressed at my husband!)

Flying to Milan

There are two main airports we’d recommend arriving at in Milan; MXP and LIN. 

The bigger of the two, Milan Malpensa International Airport (MXP), is mostly used by international airlines.

Though it is closer to the city core, Milan Linate (LIN) mostly serves flights inside Europe and the United States.

Another sizable international airport that services low-cost carriers is Milan Bergamo Airport (BGY), which is located northeast of Milan. We’d advise staying away from this one if you can. The airport is located outside of Milan, in a separate city, and there is a lot less transportation available from the airport than there is from MXP and LIN to the city center.

Getting from MXP Airport to Milan

Milan Malpensa Airport (MXP) is located 31 miles (50 km) from Milan’s City Center.

The easiest way to reach the city center is by taking the Malpensa Express Train. The train costs €13 euros one-way and runs every 15-30 minutes throughout the day. 

From the airport, there are two lines operated by the Malpensa Express: one to Milano Centrale and the other to Milano Cadorna. Prior to boarding either train, determine which stop is closest to your hotel as the trains do not serve both. Alternatively, a taxi will cost around €100 euros, which is worth it when you have a larger party or lots of luggage.

Getting around Milan

After arriving in Milan from Venice, we quickly found that our go-to Uber app is not available in every major city in Italy; in fact, there’s only 2 cities that allow Uber Black in Italy (Milan and Rome).

We used Uber Black in Milan to save time and it was very reliable. Check out our Best Italy Travel Apps to download. These apps came in super handy for booking everything from trains, taxis, food, and more.

Romantic Day Trips from Milan

Looking for a romantic city to visit after Milan and seeing one of the most beloved buildings in Italy, Duomo di Milano? There are so many great Italian cities to visit and to take a day trip from Milan to!

We highly recommend visiting pairing Milan with a day trip to Cinque Terre.

Other great options are to visit Venice to see San Marco Square and do a romantic gondola ride, Cinque Terre to see the five colorful villages and capture memories at the best Cinque Terre photo spots, or visit the Piazza del Duomo in Florence for a day trip.

If you don’t want to do extra planning and want to have a tour company take care of it all, this Day Trip from Milan to Venice with Guided City Tour and this Day Trip from Milan to Cinque Terre Guided Tour With Cruise are both highly rated with 5 star reviews.

Best Time to Visit Milan

Milan is open all year round, just like many other European towns. Although there isn’t a one ideal time to visit Milan, there are some times that are better based on your interests.

Let’s say your main attraction is shopping with your significant other. If so, the best time to visit Milan is during the sales season, which runs from January to July.

During the summer, be aware that the city may get extremely hot throughout the summer, particularly in July and August. But because so many people are on vacation, Milan has a distinct vibe in August. All places are most enjoyable when it’s emptier and that’s one reason why we always explore during sunrise.

March through May or September through October have pleasant, stroll-friendly temps. Winter is the best season for additional indoor attractions because it’s frequently cold and occasionally foggy.

How Many Days Should You Spend in Milan?

We always try to answer this question for every place we travel and provide a guide on, and the answer almost always no! We fell in love with Milan and could easily see ourselves spending a week slow traveling there.

However, we do feel that 3 days (at least 2 nights) is the perfect balance for Milan. As the Italy’s 2nd largest city, there is so much things to do in Milan.

Two days gives you time to visit the Duomo di Milano, shop at Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II and Piazza del Duomo, visit the Castello Sforzesco, to the Tour of Da Vinci’s Last Supper and Church of Santa Maria. Splitting these activities into 2.5 days without feeling rushed is an ideal pace.

It’ll also give you the chance to see the Duomo di Milano at sunrise is one of the most magical things!

Milan was one of our favorite Italian cities for the romantic things to do as a couple, best shopping, fashion, and some of the best diverse cuisines.

Ready for Your Romantic Milan Trip?

We hope you found this romantic places in Milan and list of things to do for couples helpful! Milan’s top sights offer a perfect blend of romance, history, fashion, and culture, making it an ideal destination for every couple and families seeking an unforgettable getaway.

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