Milan Cathedral – Duomo-di Milano – Galleria Vittorio Arcade – City Centre – Milano

Duomo-di-Milano-Milan Cathedral

Duomo-di-Milano-Milan Cathedral

Magnificent Milan Cathedral (Duomo di Milano)

I spent a day in Milan before traveling by train through the scenic Italian alps to beautiful Lake Como. In Milan the first sighting of the   Milan Cathedral (Duomo di Milano in Italian) took my breath away; it is magnificent. There is no other way to describe this amazing Gothic Cathedral. Inside the Cathedral was dark and subdued but wonderful treasures lie within. There are three beautiful alters, many sculptures, wonderful paintings and stained glass windows, not to mention the sheer height and size of the interior of the cathedral.

Cathedral Treasury

The Cathedral treasury, housed within a crypt inside the Duomo-di Milano has much to offer in historical value and content. Early Christian and Romanesque artworks including reliquaries, richly embroidered vestments, a panel in gold and silver of the ‘Pax of Ariberto” created around 1035, and much more. There is a small fee  to view the Cathedral treasures but well worth it.

 famous "Madonnina" atop the main spire of the cathedral, a baroque gilded bronze statue

Duomo di Milano rooftop famous “Madonnina” atop the main spire of the cathedral

Views from Cathedral rooftop

Take the lift (or 200 steps) to the roof of the Duomo di Milano, this is a must. Apart from a  great view over the city, the cathedral roof allows a closer look at the  intricate detail of the Gothic spires and statues. This beautiful cathedral or Duomo di Milano took nearly six hundred years to complete and stands as the fourth largest cathedral in the world. Wonderful architecture.

Vittorio Emanuele II the first King of Italy.

Equestrian statue Vittorio Emanuele II the first King of Italy,Milano

Piazza Del Duomo or Cathedral Square

Enjoying the views from the rooftop of the cathedral, the Piazza Del Duomo or Cathedral Square lies below, alive with people and pigeons. The Piazza marks the centre of the city.  To right of the Duomo di Milano stands the renowned arcade, Galleria Vittoria,  on the left La Scala the famous opera house of Milano. In the centre of the piazza stands an equestrian statue of King Vittoria Emmanuel II, the first King of the Kindom of Italy.

Galleria Vittoria, Milan Italy

Milano – Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II (photo-MarkusMark 2008)

The Galleria Vittorio – a four-story double arcade in city centre of Milano

The Galleria Vittoria is a wonderful building being a forerunner of our modern shopping arcades. Designed by Italian architect, Guiseppe Mengone in 1861, building commenced  between 1865 and 1877.  The arcade named Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II after King Vittorio Emanuele II the first King of Italy (formerly King of Sardinia).

Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II from inside the arcade(photo Dave Cameron2006)

Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II from inside the arcade(photo Dave Cameron2006)

The Galleria Vittorio is the oldest shopping mall in Italy, housed within a four-story double arcade in the city centre of Milano. The  interior architecture is quite something to look at. The structure, formed by two glass-vaulted arcades intersected in an octagon, covering the streets connecting Piazza del Duomo to Piazza Della Scalar. The streets covered by an arching glass and cast iron roof. Look for the beautiful paintings under the dome and the  wonderful mosaic  floors. The Galleria connects these two famous landmarks, Milan Cathedral and La scala Milano in the city centre.

La Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II Milano, Italia

La Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, Milano,Italia (Alterboy 2008)

The Arcade is home to  high fashion houses and luxury items, as it was then and now, names such as Louis Vuitton and Prada,  jewellery and silver shops are prominent today, as well as restaurants, cafe’s and bars. One particularly famous coffee shop, the Art Nouveau classic, Caffè Zucca, established in the Galleria for nearly 150 years, is a must for great coffee and atmosphere. Very expensive, but as a one-off experience worth it.

Tragically the architect of this wonderful arcade, Guiseppe Mengone,  died when he fell from the central dome of the Galleria on December 30,1877. This was just prior to the inauguration of the Galleria Vittorio.  Guiseppe Mengone was just shy of his 48th birthday when he died.

A trip to Italy would not be complete without a visit to the wonderful Gothic Cathedral and the Galleria Vittorio Arcade in Milano.


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  1. You give some excellent assistance right here. I am currently having glass roof covering built on my home and I know how it feels.
    Times are altering and its best to adapt to those transforming times

    • Hi Perry, I look at the glassed roof on the Galleria Vittorio and think ‘what an amazing roof” and wonder how it was made? That roof is now the basis for modern ideas in our shopping centre complexes of today. Transforming ideas!

  2. That’s such a nice article about my city! I’m glad you liked it and I love your photos.

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