Saturday, October 17, 2009


I'm on leave in Italy right now, and have been in Milan for the past two days. I'm taking a train to Florence in the morning. It's very pretty but incredibly expensive. People always say Rome is expensive, but I think Milan is worse. I sat down at a cafe yesterday for Tiramisu and hot chocolate, and ended up paying € 15 for those two things alone. Of course, it depends on the area and it's cheaper near my hotel, but even a few blocks away from my hotel, prices start to skyrocket (this same holds true for internet cafes - the one I found further away was €5 for an hour as opposed to the one I'm at now for €1.60).

I saw a few churches, and the Duomo, of course. DaVinci's Last Supper is sold out until November so I didn't make it there (they only let 25 people in at a time every 15 minutes). I also walked by some of the designer stores but fortunately I planned ahead - I packed a small bag with little extra space and the airline I'm flying only allows one carry on, not the usual purse and a carry on, so I physically can't buy too many things. Given the fact that there are no Starbucks in Italy, I'm rather amused by the many McDonald's here - I literally saw two across the street from each other. There is also one piazza/mall area which has a Prada, a Luis Vuitton, an expensive jewelry shop and a McDonald's in the center. Somehow I didn't think Prada and McDonald's would be in the same establishment.

I've definitely enjoyed all the art museums I've seen here but two of them were expensive (€15 and €10 respectively). The other was inside the Castello Sforzesco, and it was only €3 to see several different museums in the complex. They actually had a very impressive collection, both in the paintings museum and the ancient art museum which Michelangelo's last sculpture, the Rondanini Pieta (I'd never heard of it before). The castle itself was also rather gorgeous.

Anyway, I'm hoping Florence will be a little less pricey, and can't wait to see all the Renaissance related things there.

No comments: