10 Things to Do in Milan at Night

Discover the most traditional side of Milan. When darkness envelops it, the capital of Lombardy brings out its most romantic side.

Matteo Gramegna

Matteo Gramegna

10 min read

10 Things to Do in Milan at Night

Night view of Milan | ©Riccardo Maria Mantero

Milan is known as the economic capital of Italy and yet it hides some corners where time seems to have stopped. Its monuments are even more beautiful after sunset, when the frenetic pace of the city slows down.

Among the things to see and do in Milan, an evening stroll is always a good choice. In this article we reveal the best places.

  • Milan Crypt of San Sepolcro Tickets
  • From $11
  • 30 min
  • Visit in medium groups of about 25 people
  • Without guide
  • Avoid the lines
  • Book now
  • Milan Pinacoteca di Brera Guided Tour
  • From $71 (from 71
  • 2h
  • Small groups or private tour if selected
  • Expert guide
  • Access without priority
  • Book now
  • Milan Sforza Castle Tickets
  • Starting at $20
  • At your own pace
  • Group size on demand
  • Two digital audio guides
  • Avoid the lines
  • Book now

1. Enjoy a late dinner at the best restaurants in Milan

Le Capannelle| ©Juan C
Le Capannelle| ©Juan C

We Spaniards love to eat with a different schedule than the rest of Europe and sometimes we find it difficult to sit at the table at 19:30 or 20:00. Luckily, in Milan you will find several options to dine late:

  • Le Capannelle: also known as the temple of Milanese late-nighters, it has an a la carte menu with starters, pasta dishes, meat, fish, Neapolitan pizza, ice cream and desserts. It is a city landmark and the only restaurant open all night (Viale Papiniano 23).
  • Hard Rock Cafe: this legendary restaurant will immerse you completely in a musical atmosphere, as while enjoying dinner you will be surrounded by unique collectibles of icons such as Michael Jackson or Madonna. If you are a music lover, this is definitely the place for you. It closes at 23:00 so you have time (Via Dante, 5).
  • Anche Forno: a small bakery in the heart of Isola. Its pizza slices and hot croissants are ideal after a few drinks in the neighborhood. Open until 4:00. (Via Carmagnola 5).
  • Rosy e Gabriele: an international restaurant a stone's throw from the central Corso Buenos Aires. The shutter stays up until 2:30 a.m. (Via Giuseppe Sirtori 26).
  • Tutti Fritti: it is the paradise of fried food and you can wash down each dish with excellent craft beers. It closes at 2:00 a.m., except on Sundays when it closes at 11:00 p.m. (Corso di Porta Ticinese 18).

Book a dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe

2. Visit the Crypt of San Sepolcro

Crypt of San Sepolcro| ©vivimerons
Crypt of San Sepolcro| ©vivimerons

Every historic city hides some gems underground and Milan is no exception. In the basement of Piazza San Sepolcro is the church of the same name, whose construction dates back to the time of the Crusades.

In that period, the cult of Christ's sepulcher spread throughout Europe and "bewitched" also St. Carlo Borromeo, then Archbishop of Milan.

He himself used to go down into the crypt to pray and his cousin Federico Borromeo embellished the place with a copper and bronze palm tree. In the Christian faith, this tree symbolizes life and rebirth. If you want to visit it too, don't forget to book a visit to the Crypt of the Holy Sepulchre.

Useful information

  • Address: Piazza San Sepolcro
  • Price: from 10€.
  • Hours: visits are available in the mornings and afternoons.

Book your entrance to the Crypt of the Holy Sepulchre

3. Pay homage to the Duomo

Duomo by night| ©Takayuki Suzuki
Duomo by night| ©Takayuki Suzuki

Symbol of Milan, building with the largest number of statues in the world, the largest Gothic cathedral on the planet? The Duomo is a temple of record and when darkness envelops the city, its silhouette will take your breath away.

The monument is illuminated with more than 500 LED projectors that highlight the details of each sculpture. If you visit Milan in December you will see the gala illumination that makes the cathedral shine even more.

Want to take the best pictures? Good! Here are some tips to find the perfect perspective while visiting the Duomo of Milan:

  • If you position yourself at the beginning of Via Dante you can frame the whole silhouette leaving the equestrian monument to Vittorio Emanuele on the right.
  • If it has rained you can look for a small puddle to take the reflection of the Duomo.
  • If you have a good camera, I recommend you to immortalize some detail of the statues and gargoyles.

Information of interest

The price varies depending on the type of visit. For more information I recommend you to read the post about tickets for the Duomo of Milan.

Book your ticket to the Duomo of Milan

4. Take a walk around Brera and its Pinacoteca

Pinacoteca di Brera| ©Pierre André
Pinacoteca di Brera| ©Pierre André

Milan is the economic heart of Italy and many people associate it with skyscrapers and frenetic comings and goings. However, a few meters from the headquarters of multinationals survive neighborhoods where time seems to have stood still. Brera is one of these, where its cobblestone streets and elegant palaces are the witnesses of historic Milan.

If you visit the Lombard capital in winter you are likely to see the neighborhood shrouded in fog. This atmospheric phenomenon adds a magical touch and a dash of fantasy to the visit that will enchant you, especially at night. I recommend you visit:

  • La Chiesa di San Marco
  • Palazzo Citterio

The Pinacoteca di Breara

In addition, you can not miss one of its greatest treasures: a visit to the Pinacoteca di Brera, located in the Academy of Fine Arts of Brera.

It houses masterpieces by Caravaggio, Hayez or Sanzio, among others. The last entrance is at 6 o'clock, so it is a good starting point to begin the night route. But on the European Night of Museums the last pass is at 21.30. Also, on the third Thursday of the month it is open at night.

To get there I recommend taking the metro and getting off at one of the following stops: Cairoli (M1 and M2), Lanza (M2) or Montenapoleone (M3).

Book a visit to the Pinacoteca di Brera

5. Take a picture of the façade of the Castle

Exteriors of the Castle| ©Rafael López
Exteriors of the Castle| ©Rafael López

After sunset, the center of Milan changes its skin. The lights of the street lamps create an evocative atmosphere and the monuments glow in the dark. The Sforzesco Castle is one of these and it is worth a visit to admire its imposing facade.

The best place to take some pictures is in Piazza Castello itself, which houses a large illuminated fountain. Behind it you can see the imposing silhouette of the Torre del Filarete, the main entrance to the fortress.

However, at night you will find it closed and you can only see it from the outside, but you can always visit the Sforzesco Castle in the morning and then see it with a different atmosphere at night, the image is totally different.

Book a tour of the castle in Milan

6. Tour the city at night by streetcar or tourist bus

Milan tram| ©a_marga
Milan tram| ©a_marga

Want to see the Lombard capital from a different perspective? Then I recommend you to book a night streetcar tour. The tour takes place aboard a 1500 model train that was used in the 1920s. As usual, these routes come with an expert guide and headphones so you won't miss any explanations.

Once on board, you will pass through the old town, Ticinese and Porta Genova (Navigli), Repubblica (near the central Stazione Centrale) and Sempione, the neighborhood of the homonymous park and the Arco della Pace. There is also a more party version that includes cocktails or a few glasses of spumante.

If you prefer, you can also choose to book your ticket on the Milan sightseeing bus and tour the city at your leisure, even at night, along its 40 stops.

Book your ticket for the tourist bus in Milan

7. Enjoy the charm of the Navigli district by taking a boat ride

Navigli by night| ©Groume
Navigli by night| ©Groume

Although it is located in the middle of a plain, Milan is a city of water. In the past, the urban fabric was crisscrossed by dozens of navigable canals that facilitated the transport of people and goods. The most important ones have survived burial and remain as witnesses to the city of yesteryear.

At nightfall, the lights of the street lamps and signs are reflected in the waters creating a romantic atmosphere, and one of the best ways to enjoy it is to visit the Navigli district, located a few metro stops from the center and a half hour walk from Milan's Duomo.

It is bounded by the old port converted into a place of leisure and two canals: Naviglio Grande and Naviglio Pavese. And you can take a boat ride along the canals to enjoy the nightlife.

8. Enjoy a drink with a view

View from the Sky Terrace Bar Milano Scala,| ©Hotel Milano Scala
View from the Sky Terrace Bar Milano Scala,| ©Hotel Milano Scala

In recent years, the rooftop bar offer in Milan has grown enormously and new establishments have been opening both in the center and in up-and-coming neighborhoods. The list below lists some of Milan's must-visits:

  • Sky Terrace Bar Milano Scala: an oasis of tranquility in the heart of Brera. In addition to an excellent cocktail bar - I advise you to try their famous Green Mixology - you will find an urban garden where the crops are used both in the restaurant and in the bar (Via dell'Orso 7).
  • Terrazza Aria - Sina the Gray: this is the cocktail bar of the five-star boutique hotel of the same name. It is known for its Campari-based drinks. I recommend ordering a Sea Dream or a City Bloom. It is located a stone's throw from the Duomo (Via S. Raffaele 6).
  • Ceresio 7: ideal to enjoy an aperitif by the pool without leaving the city. The drinks on the menu are unconventional. From the top you can see the Porta Garibaldi skyscrapers and the Monumental Cemetery (Via Ceresio 7).
  • Radio Rooftop: the panoramic bar located on the tenth floor of the Hotel Me Milano Il Duca. Open daily until 1:00 or 2:00. Reservations recommended (Via Marco Polo 18)
  • Globe: a restaurant and cocktail bar overlooking Piazza 5 giornate. Its menu is varied and includes exotic creations such as the Brasilian Sunset or the Gusano Desaparecido. It is located in the east side of Milan (Piazza Cinque Giornate 1).

9. Live the Milanese nightlife

In a Disco| ©Edoardo Tommasini
In a Disco| ©Edoardo Tommasini

The Lombard city is known for its nightlife. Some of the best clubs in the country are concentrated here and there are options for all tastes and budgets. The list below gathers the best options for a night out, let's discover them!

  • Amnesia: a nightclub divided into two rooms: House Room (with house music) and Sound Room (with more eclectic sounds) (Via Alfonso Gatto).
  • Magazzini Generali: an old industrial building converted into a club. In its stage, artists of the caliber of Chemical Brothers, Franz Ferdinand and Sven Vath were exhibited, although the list could be longer. The ideal place to listen to electronic or rock music (Via Pietrasanta 16).
  • Just Cavalli: opens its doors at aperitivo time (around 19:00) and continues until late with a quality dj set. You will find it under the Torre Branca in Parco Sempione (Viale Luigi Camoens).
  • Fabrique: a space for concerts and events. Look for the program on the official website, you could take advantage of your visit to Milan to listen to your favorite artist. It is located in the eastern part of the city, not far from Milan-Linate Airport (Via Fantoli 9).
  • Loolapaloosa: a trendy option in the Porta Garibaldi - Corso Como area. You can try their aperitif from 19:00 while after 23:00 it transforms into a club (Corso Como 15).
  • Alcatraz: a multipurpose space in the northern area of Milan. Before midnight it hosts concerts of all kinds, from rock to rap through tributes to the music of the past and metal. After the exhibitions it is transformed into a large discotheque (Via Valtellina 25).
  • Hollywood: a historical of the city. It usually offers dance, hip-hop, techno and house music and attracts a varied public. It is not difficult to see some celebrities here (Corso Como 15).

10. Discover Milan's hidden face with a ghost tour

Piazza del Duomo from the Duomo| ©Guilhem Vellut
Piazza del Duomo from the Duomo| ©Guilhem Vellut

A famous Milanese writer of crime novels, Giorgio Scerbanenco, wrote: "the Milanese kill on Saturdays because the other days they are busy at work". The Lombard capital has been the theater of a few crimes and a ghost tour is the ideal choice to discover the most sinister stories.

Like the one in Milan's central Duomo square, where a spirit haunts. It is the ghost of Carlina, a tormented soul who lost her life in the nearby Cathedral. Some believe she threw herself, others think her death was accidental. Since then, the woman continues to haunt this area and some couples who were married in the Duomo swear that the young Carlina appeared at the wedding.

Interesting information

  • Duration of the ghost tour: between one and a half and two hours.
  • Route: Palazzo Marino, Via Torino, Pinacoteca Ambrosiana, among others.
  • Meeting point: a central location such as the Castle or Piazza Duomo.
  • Price: around 15€.

Is it safe to visit Milan at night?

Milan by night| ©Eneas Pedro
Milan by night| ©Eneas Pedro

Milan is a safe city and yet you should be a little careful. Like any large city it is important to keep bags and backpacks under control to avoid theft. The center is the most heavily guarded area, but as it is home to the largest number of tourists, it inevitably attracts pickpockets.