Never underestimate the power of a day trip. Compared to longer vacations, day trips are much more time efficient for people with busy schedules who can’t commit to a complete vacation. Additionally, day trips can be a much more affordable way to travel for students. Because you can save on accommodations and overnight expenses, day trips are the perfect option for students on a budget. Italy is a beautiful country with a plethora of gems. Below are some of my favorite spots for a mini-adventure from Milan
Perhaps the most infamous day trip from Milan, Lake Como is the perfect destination for all travelers. Near the border of Italy and Switzerland, Lake Como is home to some of the most stunning beauty and gorgeous villas in all of northern Italy. The lake is fortunately only a short train ride from Milan. Fun fact: Villa del Balbianello in Lake Como was used as a filming location for the movies Casino Royal and Star Wars: Episode II.
Made up of seaside villages on the Italian Rivera, Cinque Terre is a UNESCO World Heritage site that is 100% worth the trip. The closest Cinque Terre town to Milan is Monterosso al Mare, however, each of the five towns has its charm and character. Along the train ride sit back as you enjoy the scenic ride that takes you along the Italian Riveria. The iconic colorful houses by the Riveria definitely are worth the trip alone!
Lake Garda is the largest lake in Italy. Some of the most popular towns include Sirmione, Garda, and Malcesine. From boat tours to scenic drives, this is the perfect destination for anyone looking for a lake day after class.
Genoa is a historic port city in Italy. The train takes about 1.5 to 2 hours from Milan, depending on the type of train you choose. Once arrived, enjoy both the maritime heritage and seafood in Genoa. A must-see in Genoa is the Acquario di Genova (Genoa Aquirum), one of the largest aquariums in all of Europe.
Famously known as the city of love and setting for Romeo and Juliet, Verona is the pinnacle Italian romantic atmosphere. A brief train ride from Milan will take you to this gorgeous city where you can visit the stunning Arena di Verona or the legendary balcony where Juliet spoke the iconic "'O Romeo, wherefore art thou Romeo?" line.
Milan’s proximity to Switzerland allows for several fantastic day trip options. Lugano and Milan are well connected, making the city perfect for day trips or longer stays in other Swiss cities like Zurich. Lugano is a delightful blend of both Swiss and Italian cultures with a Mediterranean flair. From Lugano art and culture to a boat tour, I would highly recommend this city if you're looking to add cultural diversity to your experience.
Again these, are just a few of the many destinations you can select for your Italian adventure abroad. Happy Travels!
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Hello! My name is Leonardo Hall, I'm a senior studying International Business and Economics at the University of Puget Sound. I'm studying abroad in Milan to study business and explore Italian culture. I love running, music, and traveling. This spring, I hope to have tons of new and exciting experiences in Italy, and that sharing them with you helps you get the most out of your time abroad!