There’s no better time to book a vacation to Milan, Italy. The city is gearing up for Expo2015, a global showcase that kicks off May 1 and is expected to draw more than 20 million visitors.
Flights to Milan from the US are regularly cheaper than they are to other European cities.
And with the euro near an all-time low, US visitors can take advantage of the shopping, dining, and nightlife the city has to offer.
Bottom line — if you see a great deal on a flight to Milan, book it. There’s a reason Kayak called it the top-trending destination of 2015.
Milan's reputation as the fashion capital of the world is no joke. It's home to several annual fashion weeks, and thousands of fashion companies are headquartered there, from Dolce & Gabbana to Versace. But it's not just a high-fashion town -- the city's got a sophisticated street style all of its own.
That fashion sensibility extends beyond clothing. Some of the city's best hotels carry designer names, like the Armani Hotel and the Bulgari Hotel. And the city's uber-trendy Nobu restaurant in an Emporio Armani store.
Of course, Milan has unparalleled shopping. The Quadrilatero d'Oro is a tiny square jam-packed with designer boutiques. It's heaven for window shoppers, or visitors with fat wallets.
The retail extravaganza extends to the nearby Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, one of the world's oldest shopping malls and an architectural marvel.
Milan has fewer historic landmarks than Rome or Florence, but there are a couple of attractions that can't be missed. Leonardo da Vinci's famous 'Il Cenacolo' ('The Last Supper') covers a convent wall, and visitors say it is larger than life. Be sure to buy tickets in advance, as a only a limited number of tourists can access the convent daily.
At the heart of the city is the Duomo, a towering Gothic cathedral that took hundreds of years to build and is filled with relics and art.
Visitors can climb a winding staircase (or hop on an elevator) to explore the cathedral's spire-filled rooftop and take in panoramic views of the city below. The church's tallest spire holds The Madonnina, a golden statue of the virgin Mary.
Milan has spent years gearing up for Expo 2015, a universal exhibition where more than 140 countries will show off technology related to this year's theme, food. Milan expects more than 20 million visitors to attend the 6-month exhibition.
The city is also known for its massive furniture fair, which takes place each April. Thousands of exhibitors from around the world convene to show the latest in furniture, lighting, and decor.
The Prada Foundation's new art complex, designed by architect Rem Koolhaas in a 120,000-square-foot former distillery, will open in the city May 9. It's expected to jump-start Milan's contemporary art scene.
Milan is known for its northern Italian cuisine, and standout dishes include risotto, osso buco, and veal Milanese. Try them all, paired with an excellent Italian red.
Book a table at Solferino, a classic Milanese restaurant in the Brera district known for its osso buco. Save room for the molten chocolate cake for dessert.
Foodies should also check out Milan's Eataly, a 5,000-square-foot version of the Italian food mecca with outposts in New York and Chicago. Milan's Eataly features a chocolate waterfall and gourmet restaurant, Alice.
For a taste of Milan's nightlife, head to the Navigli district, where bars and restaurants line the city's ancient canals.
Or splurge on tickets to a show at La Scala, the world-famous opera house that's hosted top performers since 1778.
While much of the city's aesthetic is industrial, there are some impressive feats of architecture in and around the Porta Nuova business district. 'Bosco Verticale,' a pair of residential towers covered in hundreds of trees, recently won the International Highrise Award.
It's also easy to escape from the city. Take a day trip to the southern tip of Lake Como, just an hour's train ride from Milan Central Station. From there, hop on a ferry and explore the tiny towns and villas that dot the serene lake.
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