I’m back in Boston! I had a wonderful vacation in Italy with my parents. It was everything I thought it would be, and more. The sights were amazing and of course the food was great. I loved spending time with my mom and dad, and I’m looking forward to future family vacations – with my two sisters next time!
Our first stop in Italy was Milan. When we arrived, there was a Wednesday-only mercato (market):
I immediately made a bee-line for the pastries
and the candy stall (what? I just came from a 10 hour plane ride, I needed sugar)
Then we checked in our hotel and set out to explore the rest of the city. I had big expectations for Milan:
1. I know that it is the fashion capital of the world, so I was expecting everyone to be very well dressed and for the whole city to be chic.
2. I was also expecting to do a lot of shopping.
3. I was very excited to see the Last Supper painting by Michelangelo.
Well, Milan was… sort of a surprise:
1. It wasn’t chic, at least not all of it. Milan is actually an industrial city, so some parts were a little gritty. And instead of the runway fashion on the street, everyone was dressed kinda normally. Not badly, don’t get me wrong, but not… exquisite. But the men – oh, the men – that’s another story. They all wore fitted Italian suits (well, since they are Italian maybe I should just say “fitted suits”) and rode motorcycles all over the city. Well tailored Italian suits + motorcycles = hubba hubba.
2. I did some shopping, but it was very expensive. In fact, everything was expensive – not just the bags, shoes, and clothes, but the food and drinks too! I actually bought very few pieces (investment pieces, as I’d like to call them) and my mom bought more (hehe) but overall it wasn’t the shopping mecca I thought it would be.
3. The Last Supper was AMAZING. And it was actually not a framed portrait but painted on the wall of one church! I had no idea. It was breath-taking and definitely worth the one-month-in-advance tickets that my dad thoughtfully got.
this is me in front of the Duomo (cathedral) – they actually made me cover up (put on a jacket in 80 degree weather) before I can enter the church
Torino’s Bull. Notice its balls are missing. They say if you put your right heel in the hole and turn 3 times, it will bring you good luck! So of course we did.
these are my parents chilling in front of our hotel. Just kidding – this is in front of the Castello Sforzeco
Courtyard – and other tourists (there were a ton of tourists!)
We watched the ballet at the world-famous Teatro Alla Scala (not allowed to take pics inside so we posed outside with the guards hehe)
Ways to get around Milan: by foot, train, cars, motorcycles (sportbikes, not Harleys) or cute bicycles
And, let’s not forget – The Food. It was delicious, of course.
During our entire stay in Italy, I ate gelatto every day (sometimes twice a day)! My favorite flavor was nocciola (hazelnut). Soooo good.
Plate of happiness: prosciutto, salami, parma ham
Pork Milanese and roasted veggies. Whoever said food portions in Italy were small was lying.
The pasta dishes were really, really good. This was prepared with a simple tomato sauce. It was just the primi (first course) portion.
I couldn’t eat in Italy without ordering carbonara!
Baked salmon with roasted eggplant and tomatoes. This was the secondi (second course) and contorni (side dish).
and Sicilian-style swordfish
No carb left behind. Pizza and all kinds of bread were everywhere.
I’ll post Parts 2 and 3 soon!