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The Best Neighborhoods of Milan, Where Should I live?

The Best Neighborhoods of Milan, Where Should I live?

As our name implies, we at Easy Milano want to make your experience living in Milan as easy as possible. There are lots of reasons people move to Milan; study, work, adventure or love. Many readers write in asking questions BEFORE moving to Milan. One question came in about neighborhoods and living in Milan. Although it is impossible to give a street by street guide, we have tried to give a good general idea of different areas.  

The Move to Milan

Buildings in Milan vary in architectural styles/ Photo by Thomas Evraert

Buildings in Milan vary in architectural styles. You may find an 18th-century palace with lush apartments, your dream industrial style loft or a residential condominium offering the latest design and energy-saving technology.

Before choosing a neighborhood, you may want to consider what you are bringing with you and how you will be moving in. This is especially important when choosing a residential building. Will you need an elevator? Is a 3-story walk-up OK for the belongings you are bringing to Italy? Will your sofa fit the stairwell, or will you need a cherry picker?

Unless you only have a few boxes and a small set of luggage, it is best to turn to a professional service. If you are moving to Milan with your family, or have precious items such as artwork, vehicles or moving to Milan with pets, you may want to seek the assistance of professionals that can manage the logistics, packing, transportation and even help to get the correct documents, visas and import permits. Bliss Moving & Logistics specializes in international relocation to Italy as well as logistics required for moving from Italy to any foreign country. Having a professional on your side rather than trying to move to Italy yourself and risking property damage or loss, will make your transition to Italy so much smoother.  

I’m moving to Milan, where should I live? 

City center/ Duomo

Living in the center of Milan

Living in the city center has its pros and cons. For example, public transportation is extremely accessible, if you work in the center you can go on foot, and restaurants, museums and all the sights are close by. However, it does get busy with tourists, outdoor events and concerts in the summer will disturb your sleep, and you will need a generous budget for rent.


The heart of Brera / Photo Abernethy via Picfair

Prices are high but if it is short term, it will be very memorable to have lived in the center of town. There are also some of the old canals and winding cobblestone roads. Accessible by Metro; Montenapoleone, Cairoli or Lanza stops as well as multiple tram stops. The buildings are classic and elegant, in fact when Napoleon was King of Italy, he had plans to make Milan a replica of Paris. If you are working in the city center, financial or fashion districts, you can walk to work. Dog owners and joggers will love the proximity to Parco Sempione.  

Porta Romana

The architecture of Milan is varied

Near enough to the center and far enough removed to not be so chaotic. Anywhere between metro stops Crocetta and Pt. Romana is a great location. Street cafes and pubs make it a good spot for nightlife. Some of the housing south of Porta Romana is even affordable for student sharing.

Magenta/Vincenzo Monti

This area is very central, and very charming and also close to Parco Sempione, – great if you have a dog or like playing frisbee/ or jogging on the weekends. For culture lovers, you will love the fact that you can walk past Leonardo Da Vinci’s residence and the church where he labored on the Last Supper or walk through the grounds of the 14th century Sforza Castle. Here you will also be close to the Cadorna metro station which is very convenient if you travel often for work as there is an express airport train to Malpensa.

Looking for temporary housing or a hotel residence in Milan?

Corso Sempione

Another area flanking Parco Sempione on the north side. There are no metro stops but it is very accessible by tram line 1 that goes right into the center. The area is very residential and quiet on the weekends. There is also a lot of greenery around. Rental prices will be higher closest to Arco della Pace (Parco Sempione) and as you move up the boulevard, rental prices decrease.

Città Studi

Milan Balconies / MLWatts – Wikimedia

Città Studi means “Study City” because of its location near the Politecnico di Milano University. Outside the center, but it affordable for students. The buildings are typical block apartments but there is a lot of green and park areas. It is not the best area serviced by public transportation, so having a bike or scooter would make getting around easier.  

Naviglio/Porta Genova

The charming area of Naviglio, the canal district of Milan, Italy / Canva Pro

The old canals and cobblestone streets are very charming. There is a lively cafe and pub culture, especially in the summer. The buildings are usually called ‘ringhiera’ characterized by long balconies connecting each apartment. The weekend markets could prove to be a burden or a blessing- depending on what you think of Sunday markets. Once a forgotten industrial area, in recent years warehouses have been transformed into lofts, galleries and fashion ateliers. Serviced by metro and trams on the main roads but you will need to walk if you live in some of the small back lanes.

City Life

Via Luciano Berio, CityLife, Milan, Italy / Wikimedia

Designed to be a modern and sustainable urban project, City Life was built on the old city fair grounds and is now a residential, commercial and business district located a short distance from the old city center and covers an area of 36.6 hectares (90 acres). Skyscrapers and modern buildings were designed by esteemed architects such as Zaha Hadid, Arata Isozaki and Daniel Libeskind. As it was a central meeting point for the Fairgrounds, it is well serviced by public transportation.

Porta Nuova/Isola

Bosco Vericale is found in the newly developed area known as Isola / Canva Pro

This too is a newly rebuilt area. Porta Nuova literally meaning “New Gate” is one of the main business districts of Milan.  Named after the well-preserved Neoclassic gate built in 1810 on this site, it is now one of Italy’s most high-tech and international districts, containing the country’s tallest skyscraper: the Unicredit Tower.  The area known as Isola is just north of the Garibaldi train station. This is where the famous building “Bosco Verticale”, The Vertical Forest is located. 900 trees and over 2,000 plants decorate its facades. It’s a new, young area and has good public transportation especially for intercity train travel from the Garibaldi train station.

These are just a few areas of Milan, we will be expanding our guide to include more so check our social media or register for our newsletter.

Do you live in Milan? Would you like to share information about your neighborhood? Write to us.

Are you moving to Milan?

Need help deciding where to live in Milan? Easy Milano will put you in touch with an expert relocation consultant or reliable real estate agent. Contact us

More to come on living in other areas outside Milan:

Arese, Milano 2, Milano 3, and San Felice, are all considered “suburbia” and offer apartment and some independent housing complexes. Some are closed communities. You may need a car.

Live in another city and commute to Milan:

Monza  – 10 minute train commute

Varese – 54 minute train commute

Lecco – 40 minute train commute

Como -36 minute train commute

Article by Celia Abernethy, Easy Milano Editor
Featured photo Milano from above / Canva Pro

Easy Milano

Easy Milano is the online publication for the international community of Milan. We offer practical tips, key information and essential insights about living and working in Italy. Easy Milano has been assisting English speaking expats in Milan since 1999.
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Comments (3)

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    […] an excellent infrastructure, transportation and a variety of housing options and an eclectic mix of neighborhoods. Living in Milan is ideal for university students, professionals and anyone who loves urban […]

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    […] The Best Neighborhoods of Milan, Where Should I live? […]

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    […] is a city made up of diverse and distinctive neighborhoods which surround the historic city center with varring social identities and functions. For example, […]

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