Things to in Milan with Kids – A Three Day Itinerary

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I love Milan. I have been several times now and on our most recent visit,  we got to really explore all over the  city! I think Milan is often overlooked by tourists, despite having so much to see and  do. I love the city atmosphere and the cosmopolitan feel of  Milan. My  family  had a  great visit and  I’m so excited to share things to do in Milan with kids and a three day itinerary to help you plan your next trip!

Milan Italy with Kids

Things to in Milan with Kids – A Three Day Itinerary

Arriving in Milan

Most likely, you will be arriving in Milan at either the airport (Malpensa or Linate) or by train at the Central Station (Milano Centrale).

If you are  arriving  by plane, its best to know that both Malpensa and  Linate airports are a ways outside the city  center. You can access the city via public transportation,  either on the Malpensa express to Milano Centrale or Urban Bus from Linate.

Alternatively, you can take a taxi from either airport to  your hotel or, what I would recommend, is to have a private transfer meeting your family  at the airport. Especially if arriving at Malpensa after an overnight flight from the US, it’s so much easier to have a driver waiting  for you when you exit immigration and baggage claim.


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If  you are taking the train to Milan (or the Malpensa Express from the airport), once you arrive at the Central Station you can  take a taxi or public transportation to your  hotel. We were actually able  to walk from the Central Station as we arrive from Venice, to our hotel –  it was only a 10 minute walk!


Where to stay in Milan with Kids

When planning to visit Milan with Kids, we wanted to stay at either a Marriott or Hilton property because we diligently  collect loyalty points. For some strange reason we could not USE Marriott Bonvoy point in Italy – not sure why, but we figured if we had to pay, best to EARN points.

I booked our hotels kind of  late (about two months in advance) since I was not 100% sure of our agenda (and I’m a busy travel agent, always planning everyone else’s trips) and there was not a ton of availability!

There is only one Hilton in city center, the Milan Hilton and it was sold out, as were most of  the Marriott hotels in Milan. Would have liked to have stayed at the Westin Palace or AC Milan.

We ended up staying at the Four Points Sheraton in a family suite. This hotel was okay  – it was clean and  close to the train station, and in a cute neighborhood with some nice restaurants, the BEST gelato shop and a few coffee and sandwich shops.

Our main complaint was this hotel is a little far from the Duomo and  the other sites we wanted to see. We also found the  lobby area very  poorly designed. It was cramped and crowded. The room was also a little small for a suite, but by  European  standards, it fit our family of four. We  had a bedroom with a king bed and a murphy bed in the  living room for the kids.

Previously, I have stayed at the Principe di Savoia – this is a luxury , five-star property  that I would love to visit again.

Close to the Duomo you  might opt for the Townhouse Duomo (I send clients here) or the Park Hyatt Milano which  is right off the Vittorio Emanuele shopping plaza. I have also had clients stay at  the Best Western  Galles which would be a good choice as well!



What to eat in Milan with Kids

Of course, one of the major draws to a trip to Italy is eating all the  delicious food! Italy is also a country whose cuisine varies by region.

Breakfast in Milan

In  Milan, I recommend trying a dish of risotto Milanese (rice with saffron), cotaletta Milanese (fried cutlet), or osso bucco. Well actually hubby recommends these since I’m vegetarian and I made him try  all these local dishes!

In Milan, I had some great creamy pasta dishes. One night I had a tagliatelle with mushrooms and another lunch a tortolloni with spinach,  which was finished with a gorgonzola walnut sauce. It was truly amazing!

lunch in Milan - at Navigli48 in the Navigli neighborhood of Milan

The kids stuck to the usual pasta, fries and pizzas. We had hoped to try a slice at Spontini, Milan’s answer to NY style slice pizza!

Also, before dinner in Milan, be sure to take in an apertivo (pre-dinner drink) at any bar you stumble upon. On our last night, we had planned to take an apertivo at the Aperol Terrazza (Terrace located on the 2nd floor of the Motta food court next to the Duomo) but for some strange reason it was closed for a few hours on the afternoon of our visit.

Aperol Spritz in Milan

Not deterred, we opted to have a drink at  one of  the restaurants with seating right on the square. This was a great experience to  enjoy an aperol (ask for a spritz) with  a close view of the Duomo! Highly recommend a happy hour beverage here, on the  terrace, in one of the  restaurants in Vittorio Emanuele or on the  rooftop of the Rinascente.

Now, no discussion on what to eat in Milan  would  be complete without a mention of  the most amazing gelateria we stumbled upon, Gelataria Paganelli. This was right near our hotel, but worth a trip. They had the coolest flavors – avocado, olive oil, sesame seed, to name a few. Plus, the quality  was really outstanding. Best gelato of our entire trip!

Gelato in Milan

Sadly, we never made it to the highly recommended Pave or CiocollatinItaliane (which had a huge line, the one at the Duomo at least). Maybe next time!



Things to in Milan with Kids – A Three Day Itinerary

We spent three days in Milan with kids  – which we  thought was the perfect amount of time to see all the big tourist sites along with time to explore less-er known areas. Here is our three day itinerary for Milan with Kids:


Milan Day 1 – Arrive and get settled into the hotel. By the time we checked in it was around 4pm, so  we gave ourselves a  little walking tour of the  area around our hotel. This afternoon time slot would  be the perfect time to book tickets for the Last Supper, since in my experience booking  this for clients, the late afternoon time slots are often the last ones available.

I visited the Last Supper when I was in Milan in  2017, so we skipped it on this visit, but if you are interested YOU MUST BUY  TICKETS IN  ADVANCE. You get a timed ticket for a 15 minute window to go in, see the painting and  ask questions of the docents. It’s a truly amazing piece and I highly recommend booking a visit during your time in Milan


Day 2 – For our first morning in Milan, I booked us for a 3.5 hour cooking class with Cook in Milano. This was such an awesome experience you can click to read my  full Cook in Milano review.

Cook in Milano

Cook in  Milano lasted from 9:30am until about 12:30 pm. When we left Clara’s cooking class (where we also sat down and enjoyed the lunch  we prepared) we were stuffed and in need of some walking  around. I had wondered if I should  have scheduled time to go back  to the hotel and nap after such a decadent meal, but that probably would not have been an efficient use of  our time.

Cook in Milano is located in the Tre Torre (City Life) neighborhood – named for Three Towers. After our cooking class, we walked around this area and then over towards the Parco Sempione. Here the kids were able to run around a little and we could sit and relax on a park bench! We really were so full from our Cook in Milano meal.

After catching a second wind, we headed into the  Castello Sforzesco. The park butts up to the back of the castle. Entrance to the castle is free, but you  have to pay to visit the museums. Again, I spent a bunch  of  time here two years ago, so we just explored  the castle grounds and pressed on  to the Duomo  for our 4:00 ticket.

Milan with Kids

When you exit the front of the Castle,  go to the left and there is a good gelato/coffee shop (Bar Castello). From there, head down via Dante, which is a pedestrian only  thoroughfare with shops and  restaurants. This will lead you right down to the Duomo.

I highly recommend buying your Duomo entrance tickets in advance. I purchased a timed ticket for 4-6pm that included the Church, Crypt of St. Charles, and a lift ticket for the rooftop. Apparently, there is a skip the line ticket for the  lift, which I regret not getting. If I wasn’t with the children I  would have liked to have done a private guided tour of the Duomo, since my  art history knowledge is lacking  and having a private guide is an awesome way to learn so much. But we did a private guided tour in Venice (kid-friendly) and my kids can only handle so much!

When we arrived at the Church, we spent about an hour walking through. I  love visiting  Churches, and looking at every single thing! We also lit some candles and spent time sitting in the pews. I was disappointed that there was so much scaffolding even inside, as the Church is undergoing  a major reconstruction.

Duomo in Milan

After self-touring the inside of the Duomo, we had to exit to go around the back to the lift for rooftop access. At that time, baby girl had to go to the bathroom, so we stopped in Rinascente to use the toilet. Then we returned to  the lift entrance and there was a little line. We waited about 20 minutes for our turn to take the elevator up to the roof terrace. Again, there was a “fast track” line, definitely  wish we would have done that!

The rooftop of  the Duomo is one of my favorite things in Italy. I love walking up there and looking down on the city. Again, it was unfortunate  that so much of the top of the Duomo was under scaffolding, but I for sure recommend you  head up there to walk  around, its magnificent!

Milan with Kids, the Duomo of Milan

Day  3 – This  was our last day in Milan and our last day in Italy. I did not have anything booked for this day because I had some ideas of things I wanted to do and I wanted to have some flexibility with the day.

On your third day in Milan you have some options. You  could definitely do a day trip to Bergamo, Como, Bellagio or even a day trip to Verona. I thought about that but opted to stay in the city.

In the morning, we headed over to San Siro to tour the stadium. This was great, and something my son really wanted to do. It was a little confusing to plan our trip to San Siro so I wrote a whole post about how to plan your tour to San Siro Stadium (COMING SOON).

Milan San Siro Stadium

After the stadium tour, we took an  Uber down to the Navigli district.  This was an area I had been wanting to visit since my last visit to Italy in 2017!

If you are taking a cab or Uber to the Navigli, use this address to get you to the center of it all: Via Casale, 4, 20144 Milano MI, Italy

Navigli, Milan, Italy

The Navigli district is located in the south of  Milan, along  several canals. Some call it the Venice of Milan! You can  even do a boat tour of this area, but what we loved was being able to dine along the canal. We stopped into Naviglio 48 and literally had our best meal of the trip! There were so many  cute places along the canal.

After eating, we of course stopped for gelato at Orso Bianco. There is also a CicollatinItaliane here as well.

Milan with Kids, visiting the Navigli neighborhood

After lunch, we wanted to spend our final afternoon back in the Duomo area. We took an Uber over to the Football Shop so my son could get his AC Milan jersey. The credit card machine at the San Siro Store was down so we could not purchase it there, but it was the same price at the shop, so if you don’t have time to head to San Siro, this is a great place to get football merchandise.

Milan with Kids

On our last afternoon in Milan, we walked around the shops, and walked through Vittorio Emanuele II. I love this shopping gallery –  not just for the high end shops that are so fun to look through, but for the beautiful ornate-ness of this plaza.

After some window shopping, we sat down for an apertivo in the square before walking  back to our hotel. We wandered through the Brera district, which is full of cute shops and really  cute restaurants. Walking around Milan  was such a great way to  see so much and  explore many of  the city’s great neighborhoods.


A few other things I wanted to do but we didn’t have time for:


Tips for Visiting Milan with Kids

In my  opinion, Milan was a great city to visit with kids, but of course some helpful hints are always good to know:

* It was very easy to  walk around, although we did A LOT of walking. Each day we averaged around 5 miles!

* Uber was a great way to get around Milan as well.

* Across Italy, restaurant service is slower than in the United States. This was hard for our kids to sit through  long  dinners each night. Italians also eat dinner late (as do we at home) but we were going to restaurants around 8 or 8:30. We gave in and let them play with our phones while waiting. With that said, all the restaurant servers were so welcoming to families!


Milan is a great city to visit and I highly recommend adding a trip to your Italy itinerary! Have you been to Milan with kids? What are your best family friendly tips for visiting Milano?


Milan with Kids


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19 Comments to “Things to in Milan with Kids – A Three Day Itinerary”

  1. I haven’t been to Milan since I was at school. I know now is not the time for a visit, but one day I’d love to return for a short break and follow many of your terrific suggestions! It would be great to take my own kids too.

  2. Ok, now I’m dreaming of a trip to Italy!! I would love to take my kids and spend our days exploring, eating gelato, and taking a cooking class!! Great guide to Milan!

  3. Kelsie Rudnick

    Reading your travel posts is so inspiring! Milan is definitely one of my bucket list places, and your review has made it even higher on that list! Can’t wait to read the next one.


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