City Break Guide to Milan

Location: Milan, Italy 

Milan is well known as a fashion city, with the city holding Milan fashion week every year. Due to this the city is famous for breath-taking and shocking outfit choices and astonishing new clothes releases by designer brands. Along with its fabulous fashion statements Milan is also known for its delicious Italian food and beautiful architecture. This made us even more excited to visit the city and experience Milan for ourselves. We had no idea what to expect, as this was our first time visiting Italy we was excited to taste real Italian food and experience a new country.

Although Milan is not the capital of Italy it is still a large city with lots to see and do. From authentic Italian food to try to sightseeing breath-taking architecture. Whether you are visiting for the fashion, the food, the architecture or just for a relaxing break you'll be sure to find what you are looking for.

As our visit was for a relaxing break we decided to be spontaneous with the sights we saw and the food we ate . . .
Getting to Milan . . .

Flying from London to Milan is super easy and fast. With flights from all London airports daily you are able to choose a flight of your choice to suit your required date and time. And with a flight time of just under 2 hours you will be in Italy within no time at all.

When booking your fights to Milan you will notice that the city has three airports. You are able to get a flight into any of the three airports from London. It doesn't matter which airport you are flying into as they are all located outside of the city and will require further transport into the centre. Each airport has similar travel times into the centre, therefore it does not matter which airport you have flights into.

Find your flights to Milan: here
Where to stay . . . 

Although Milan is a large city the public transport is very efficient and easy to use to get around. Therefor the location of your accommodation is not a big issue for your stay. It doesn't matter whether you are staying in the centre of the city with all the hustle and bustle or near the outskirts where you can experience a more authentic experience. The location of your accommodation depends on how long you are in the city and what you are planning to do while you are here. 

Milan is divided into 9 zones:

The zones are often referred to by their zone number or a list of the districts inside that zone. 
  • Centro Storico - This is the centre zone within the city where you will find the Duomo cathedral and Galleria Vittorio Emanuele shopping centre along with other churches, museums, squares and historical monuments. With the smallest population of all the zones this central zone is comprised by mainly tourist attractions and sights to see rather than residential or visitor accommodation. 

  • Zone 2, Station Centrale, Gorla, Turro, Greco, Crescenza - Located north east of the centre this zone would be the one required to pass through to get to other Italian city's such as Venice. The zone is home to the major shopping street Corso Buenos Aires, Milano Centrale railway station and Naviglio Martesana canal. 

  • Zone 3, Citta Studi, Lambrate, Porta, Venezia - This is another north-eastern zone within the city. Within this zone you will find Lambro park and Maserati park. Both the parks are compromised of green areas for picnics and paths for strolling along. This zone within the city has a more relaxed feel to it due to the tranquil and relaxing areas.

  • Zone 4, Porta Vittoria, Forlanini - This zone is located south-east of the centre. Home to the Alessandrini park, Forlanini park and Lambro river. The zone is another perfect zone if you are visiting the city for relaxation.  

  • Zone 5, Vigentino, Chiaravalle, Gratosoglio - This is one of the biggest zones within the city, located at the south of the city. With sights such as the Bocconi university and Chiaravalle abbey, the zone is perfect if you are planning to explore and sight see while you are visiting the city.

  • Zone 6, Barona, Lorenteggio - This zone is located south-west of the centre. The zone is home to Porta Ticinese which is a large architectural arch. This is a formal city gate for Milan which today still stands on the outskirts of the city. Photographed below when we came across the arch we was unaware what it was but was amazed by its size and beauty. Located in quite a residential area the arch is unexpected.

  • Zone 7, Baggio, De Angeli, San Siro - The most western zone of them all and the largest. This is the zone which has the San Siro football stadium. The stadium is home to the footballs teams AC Milan and Inter Milan. Although this is the biggest zone apart from the stadium there are few other tourist attractions to see.

  • Zone 8, Fiera, Gallaratese, Quarto Oggiaro - This zone is located north-west of the centre. Due to being one of the biggest zones you will find lots to see and do, including 6 parks; 9 metro stations and 3 railway stations. The large number of stations within the zone make it easy accessible to visit different districts within the zone.

  • Zone 9, Porta Garibaldi, Niguarda - The last zone within the city. Located north of the centre this zone is home to lots of exciting buildings and sights to see. The zone feels more modern than other zones due to its tall buildings which are mainly built of glass and metal.

What to eat . . .

Of course being in Italy you will definitely not be stuck on where to eat and what to eat. After all Italy is well known for its delicious Italian food. Whether you are looking for pizza, pasta or gelato you will be sure to find what you are looking for. Around every corner is a gelato shop with unimaginable new flavours; a pizza restaurant with the biggest pizzas you have ever seen and the most amazing smelling pasta dishes.

Due to our visit being in August the weather was very sunny and warm for the majority of our trip. This meant we could try gelato from a few different places during our trip:

  • Savini - This is the restaurant inside the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele. Next to the restaurant you will find the little gelato shop with its wide variety of gelato flavours. From pistachio to grape flavour you will be sure to find your favourite or a new exciting flavour to try out. You can have your gelato in either a little pot or a cone. We went for the little pot which came with a wafer; we chose pistachio and vanilla flavours.

  • Amorino - Also located within the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele shopping centre this is the gelato shop which sells flower shaped gelatos in cones. With a variety of bright coloured flavours you are able to create a flower of your choice. With such a pretty gelato you are also in the perfect location to take your photos in front of the Duomo cathedral.

How to get around . . .

Getting around the city can be simple and easy if you know where you are heading. With the main tourist sights located within walking distance from each other the only time you will need to use transport if you are sightseeing would be initially get to and from the centre. If you however need to get around the city and don't fancy the walk then there are lots of transport options to choose from:

  • Metro - The metro map is very simple to read and follow. All you need to know is which stop you need to get off at and then you can work out which line you will need to get there. You are able to purchase day tickets for the metro which makes it easy to hop on and off at your own free will.

  • Tram - This is a great transport option if you want to get closer to your destination than you would if you was using the metro. This is due to the fact that the tram has more stops down smaller streets where you wouldn't find a metro. However the maps can be confusing to read so make sure you know what you are doing before hopping on.

Sights to see . . .

If you visiting Milan to explore and sight see then you are in luck because the city has lots of pretty architecture buildings and sights. Along with all the Italian looking bright coloured buildings you will find historical buildings and monuments which were built to represent the past of the city.

  • Duomo cathedral - Previously discussed in our 4 Instagram Spots in Milan post we outlined how breath-taking and astonishing the cathedral is upon first impressions. From the outside you are able to admire the size and beauty of the building and can continue to do this if you choose to purchase a ticket and venture inside.

  • Galleria Vittorio Emanuele - This famous shopping centre is full of every designer shop you could wish for and a couple of amazing gelato parlours to grab a delicious treat (you can read about these in our what to eat section above).

  • Porta Ticinese - This was previously one of the gates into the city. Photographed below you can easily see why this was a welcoming gate. Due to the magnitude and beauty of the gate it is a breath-taking sight to see. The location which is also on the outskirts from the centre is peaceful and tranquil.

  • Arco Della Pace - This arch is another gate into the city, located at the edge of Sempione park again the arch sits in a peaceful location. The arch also matches the architecture of the Duomo cathedral.

We would love to know what your favourite thing about Milan is? What would you recommend seeing next time we visit?

You can also read our 4 Instagram Spots in Milan post: here

Love Chloe and Megan

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4 Instagram Spots in Milan

Location: Milan, Italy

When visiting a new place one of the most important things for us are the memories that we take away afterwards. We don't want to see new destinations only through the lens on our camera. And although this is a post all about capturing photos for instagram it is more about the location in which you do this. We believe that every photo should have a special meaning or memory behind it and by capturing your instagram photos in the best locations you can look back at these memories for much longer. These don't have to be posing photos but natural photos of you in the moment, experiencing the new location.

Due to Milan's pretty buildings and sunny weather you will be able to find a perfect instagram, spot around every corner. And with all the Italian food you will be eating, your instagram is going to get rather full. However we have included the best places to capture those breath-taking instagram photos and experience the real Milan.

Duomo Cathedral . . .

The Duomo cathedral is Italy's largest cathedral and a must see sight when visiting Milan. Not only is the size of the cathedral rather impressive but it is also very beautiful. Built with brick and covered in white marble the building is any bloggers dream. The white marble cathedral is the perfect outfit back drop. Located within the centre of the city in front of a large square you are able to capture your photos as close or as far away as you wish. However be aware that the square does get rather busy! Especially when the weather is nice; the sky is blue and the cathedral is dazzling in the sunshine. Although you may not be the only one in your photo the photo will still look amazing with the cathedral in the background. Alternately you could arrive at the cathedral early, before opening time and capture your instagram photo as the sun rises when the square isn't so busy.

The cathedral is also open to the public to go inside if you would rather capture your instagram photos with the inside architecture rather than the outside.
Galleria Vittorio Emanuele . . .

The Galleria Vittorio Emanuele is just a short walk across the road from the cathedral. With an arch entrance; a glass roof and every designer shop you could wish for the shopping centre is instagram heaven. The shopping centre is one of the worlds oldest and probably prettiest you will find. Due to the glass roof the shopping centre is filled with sunshine during the day and views of the stars at night.

As Milan is a big fashion city which holds Milan fashion week every year the city is often well visited for its designer shops and boutiques. If this is the reason for your visit then this is the shopping centre you need to come to. And if you are just visiting for a city break then you still need to come to the shopping centre - to see how beautiful it is and taste how yummy the gelato is.

Instagram wise you will find endless places to take your photos - whether you want photos inside with views of the shops and pretty architecture or outside so you can admire the size of the arch entrance. Whether it is a sunny day outside or not the shopping centre will still look flawless on your instagram. 
Arco Della Pace . . . 

Located at the end of Sempione park the arch sits as if an entrance to go inside the park. The arch represents the entrance into the city. Completed in 1838 the arch matches the other historical architecture within the city such as the Duomo cathedral. Surrounded by a square with large concrete steps you are able to sit and admire the arch while having a rest in such a peaceful and tranquil area. 

We found this to be a perfect instagram spot due to the tranquil location and size of the arch itself. Although there are barriers around the arch so you can not get too close the arch is still impressive from a distance. And you will be sure to want the whole arch within your photo. If you are lucky you may even be able to get a photo of a tram through the arch. Whether you are heading to the arch for sunrise, sunset or just in the middle of the day you will be amazed by the beauty of the arch. 
Darsena Del Naviglio . . . 

Unlike a lot of other city's, Milan does not have too many canals or rivers. Therefore you will have to head to the bottom of the city to see a canal during your visit. Located on the outskirts of the city you will find a cluster of peaceful canals to have a stroll; experience the real Milan and capture some perfect instagram photos. Due to the location of the canals you will find that it is not a very touristy area and a lot of the people are residents who speak only Italian. 

We found a quaint little bridge over one of the canals where we could take some instagram photos. However you will be sure to find lots of opportunities to capture your photos. Whether you want the canals in the background or the Italian buildings which line the water. We found the canals the perfect place to end our visit to the city by having a peaceful stroll in such a cultural setting. 
We would love to know where your favourite instagram spots are? Where did you take your instagram photos in Milan?

Love Chloe and Megan 

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Urban Decay Naked Heat Palette

As always Urban Decay have brought out another breathtaking range. The new heat range which has just been released is their most dazzling range yet. Created with some smouldering colours the heat range is sure to leave you amazed. Their new palette consists of 12 new show stopping shades of burnt oranges, deep reds and warm browns. The palette has been released at just the right time to end the summer with a bang and bring in them autumn eye looks. Within the range you will find three lipsticks and two eye pencils to match the palette. Luckily we were able to pick up the palette in a Sephora on our latest trip to Milan. And after having a play around with the palette we can see what all the hype is about. Whether you are one for subtle soft eyes or stand out breathtaking eyes the palette has what you are looking for. With such a wide range of shades the looks you can create are endless. 
Packaging . . .

Like the other naked palettes the naked heat palette is a long rectangle shape. With 12 rectangular shades inside; a full size mirror to see both eyes at once and a double ended brush you have everything you will need. The palette packaging has been created to match the current packaging of the previous naked palettes. However unlike the previous palettes the heat palette is bound to catch your attention straight away with its bright outside. Previous palettes have been in brown packaging to represent the shades inside, however due to the smouldering shades inside the new heat palette you are left with a bright fire coloured packaging. Also to match the theme the palettes outer packaging appears like a match box which slides open. 

When it comes to packaging Urban Decay know what they are doing. Although the packaging may be simple it is beyond effective. Catching your attention you will be left longing to see what is inside that large match box. 
Shades and Quality . . .

When it comes to the quality of the shadows you will be left speechless. With a velvety texture and rich colour you will have a perfectly blended eye look in no time. The velvety texture allows you to apply the shadow effortlessly and blend multiple shades with ease. And with such a rich colour from all of the shades your eye look is bound to last all day or night. 

With 12 new shades in the palette you will be able to create a stunning look to suite any occasion! 

The new shades within the palette vary from glimmering coppers to smouldering reds and burnt oranges. This enables you to create such a wide variety of looks, whether you need a dazzling day time look or an intense night time look. Each of the shades are also perfectly selected to blend effortlessly with each other. You have 12 shades within the palette which enable you to create a look to suit you. We found that due to the variety of shimmer shades and matte shades we are able to always find a look for an occasion. The quality of the shadows is also perfect if you want to use shimmer and matte shades together. 
Price . . .

The new naked heat palette is priced the same as the previous naked palettes brought out by Urban Decay. Although it is exactly the same size as the previous palettes we were surprised to see the same price for such a smouldering palette. With 12 new breathtaking shades for the upcoming autumn season and a double ended brush you are getting an amazing palette which won't break the bank. 

However bare in mind if you are purchasing the palette from somewhere other than Urban Decay themselves the price may be slightly different. As we had purchased the palette from Sephora in Milan we did pay slightly more due to a poor exchange rate, however the palette is currently sold out from Urban Decay. 

Once back in stock you can purchase the Naked Heat Palette: HERE
We would love to know what you think of the new palette? Have you tried any of the other naked palettes? 

Love Chloe and Megan

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Sol de Janeiro | Brazilian Bum Bum Cream

As soon as summer starts approaching everyone starts to work on that holiday body. And although it is great if we have a summer body we love wouldn't it also be great if we could maintain that summer body through the winter as well. Brazilian bum bum cream is exactly what it states cream for your bum. However it is also a moisturiser which can be applied all over the body. Inspired by Brazilians due to their famous bums which are found in small bikinis and tight jeans. The cream is a must have if you want flawless, smooth and toned skin throughout the summer and into the winter.

The moisturiser aims to leave your skin feeling and looking its best.

The cream comes in a handy pot which can be purchased in two sizes. We find that the smaller size cream is perfect travel size so we can always apply the cream wherever we are traveling to. The cream helps our skin to feel refreshed, nourished and keeps it looking its best for the summer.
How to use . . .

Although the cream is called bum bum cream you do not have to apply the cream only to your bum. The cream can be used as an all over body moisturiser. With the aim to nourish, tone and smooth the skin the moisturiser is perfect to get your skin looking and feeling great.

When applying the product you will not require very much for each area - a little goes a long way. The small amount can be applied in circular upward motions to ensure that the cream is spread over the whole area and warmed to ensure the product moisturises deeper layers of the skin. By warming the skin as you apply the product you are able to work the moisturiser deeper into the skin for more enhanced benefits.  Due to the richness of the cream you are able to use it at all times of year, no matter how dry your skin is.

With such ingredients as caffeine not only does the product work wonders for your skin on the outside but it also benefits the inside. The caffeine within the product stimulates the blood circulation within the body to decrease the appearance of cellulite.

Ultra-hydrating, tightening and smoothing the miracle moisturiser will be your new favourite product!

We would love to hear your thoughts on Brazilian bum bum cream? Have you tried any other Sol de Janeiro products?

You can purchase your own Brazilian Bum Bum Cream: here

Love Chloe and Megan

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Barcelona || Lets Explore

Location: Barcelona, Spain

If you have been to Barcelona before then you know what an amazing city it is and if you haven't been to Barcelona before then you need to go! Anyone who visits the city falls in love. Whether you are looking for a relaxing beach holiday or an adventurous sightseeing holiday Barcelona has what you are looking for. The city has so many amazing sights to see that you will always have something fun to do. And if you came for a relaxing break the city also has a gorgeous beach and lots of pretty parks. 

The city is great to visit due to its beach location. You are able to do all kinds of city things such as shopping and sightseeing and relax at the end of the day at the beach. The city's location also makes it great whether you are visiting in the summer for the beach or during another season for the city. 
Getting to Barcelona . . . 

Getting to Barcelona from London is super easy. Every London airport has flights to Barcelona and with a flight time of only 1 hour 55 minutes it is quick and easy to get to. You will be able to find dates and times to suite your needs due to the vast number of flights to Barcelona. 

When booking your flight however make sure you check which airport you are flying into. Although Barcelona only has the one Barcelona Prat airport there are flights which fly into two airports outside of the city. The Girona and Reus airports are approximately 120km from Barcelona and take around an hour to get into the city. However London do have flights to these airports so when you search for flights to Barcelona make sure you check where you are flying into. 

You can find flights to Barcelona: here
Where to stay . . . 

I think where you stay in Barcelona depends on what you are planning to do in the city and how long you are here for. If you are not spending much time in the city and want to see a few things then it would be recommended by find accommodation near your sights of interest. Although the transport around Barcelona is good it can still take some time to get to certain places due to how busy it gets. 

The city is made up of different areas. Finding the right area for you is key to having the best stay. You have . . . 

Ciutat Vella: This is the area right in the middle of the city. Due to being the oldest part of the city you will find some of the oldest and most interesting architecture. Although Ciutat Vella is an area in itself it is made up of four neighbourhoods: La Barceloneta, El Gothic, El Ravel and Sant Pere. Out of these the most well known neighbourhood is the El Gothic which is famous for its little streets which are only accessible on foot and quirky buildings with little shops in. Here you will find everything you will possibly need from clothes shops, to ice cream parlours to restaurants for dinner. 

Eixample: This is above the Ciutat Vella area located within the middle of the city. This area is home to famous architectural buildings such as: Casa Battlo, Casa Mila and Sagrada Familia. Walking from the Ciutat Vella area you will notice little difference in the buildings appearance. However you will notice that the majority of the streets are wider with access for cars and the area is a lot busier to walk around.

Sant Montjuic: Although this may be one of the biggest districts within the city it can often be the least visited by tourists due to its outskirts location. However its location can also be perfect if you would prefer to stay away from the hustle and bustle of the city but still be in walking distance from the beach and the centre. Within the Sants Montjuic district you will find the Font Montjuic Fountain which puts on a breathtaking music and light show at night and the Teleferic De Montjuic cable car which is a 750 metre long cable car which takes you to the top of Montjuic mountain to admire views across the city and out to sea.
Les Corts: This district is located on the outskirts of the city inland. The district is approximately a 15 minute metro journey from the city centre. This district is well known as the financial business district which is home to many restaurants and hotels. You will be sure to find a hotel you will love within the district if you don't mind being located away from the centres hustle and bustle. 

Sarria Sant Gervasi: This is the largest district of them all within Barcelona. Located north west of the city it is mainly residential due to its outskirt laid back location. You will find that the area is rather hilly due to its surrounding location of the city centre. Due to its location and residential majority the area is perfect if you are a returning tourist to the city and are looking for an authentic and peaceful visit. If you want the real Barcelona experience then you need to go where the residents are to get a feel for the place. 

Gracia: Like many of the other districts within Barcelona the area is home to many architectural buildings and monuments such as: the clock tower in Placa de la Vila, Gaudis Casa Vicens and on the outskirts Park Guell. You will notice when in the area that it is home to many artists among the small community. Within the area you will find the most foreign restaurants within Barcelona. This may be the perfect area for you to stay if you are looking for a quirky area full of sights to explore during the day and trendy terrace cafes to eat and drink at night. It may also be the perfect location - walking distance from the centre yet still far enough out of the hustle and bustle of the tourist hot spots. 

Horta Guinardo: This is one of the least known districts within the area due to its north east location which is on the outskirts of the city. The area is mainly residential with a quiet, suburban vibe. Surrounded by hills and mountains the area is home to some natural attractions and pretty scenery. Although the district is appealing to visit due to its laid back and stunning location it can be hard to get to due to the metro stopping before you reach the district. You can however get a free bus which will take you to the university which is located at the top of one of the hills within the district.  

Nou Barris: Located north of the city the area is known for its many green spaces: Parc de la Guineueta, Parc del Turo de la Peira and Parc Central de Nou Barris. Although located outside of the centre the area is perfect for a day of shopping with breathtaking views across the city from certain areas within the district. 
Getting around . . . 

With so many sights to see in the city and them each being rather spread around making sure you see everything during your trip can depend on the transport you use to get to every destination. Being a city the roads can get rather busy and it can take a while to get anywhere. However you can make traveling to each destination more exciting by choosing the best kind of transport. We found that by traveling to the destinations in a variety of interesting types of transport we was able to see more sights along the way!

Teleferic Cable Car: This may only be a helpful transport option if you would like to reach the  top of Montjuic Mountain to see the castle and the views. Other than being a mode of transport the cable car is more like an experience to see the city from above. Located in the Sant Montjuic area the cable car is perfect to explore the area which is home to the Olympic stadiums. With three stations to hop onto the cable car you are able to walk some of the mountain before hopping on the cable car. 

You can learn more about the cable car and where you purchase your tickets: here

Barcelona Bus Turistic: Previously discussed in our How to get around on a Barcelona tourist bus post the bus was our main mode of transport when exploring the city. Taking us to all of the sights that we wanted to see within the city the bus was perfect to sightsee on the way. Due to the height of the bus we was able to see sights and buildings which we would not notice from ground level. 

You can read about how we got around the city using the tourist bus: here

Metro: Although we only used the metro as transport to and from the airport the metro does have lines all across the city which makes it perfect to get to where you want to go. And with the purchase of multi journey tickets you are able to travel for a reasonable price. However the metro lines can be a little confusing as they run all over the city in all kinds of directions. As long as you know where you are heading and the lines which you will need to get to your destination then the metro should be quick and easy. The only let down with this type of transport is the lack of views out of the windows. 
Sights to see . . . 

Barcelona is home to many breathtaking buildings and sights to explore. Whether you are traveling to the city for a relaxing break; a sightseeing visit or a foodie visit the city has everything you will need. Being such a large city the sights to see are endless, even if you are staying in the city for a while. Therefor you want to see the best sights if you can not see them all during the one trip.  

Sagrada Familia: Probably the most famous building within the city, the church which is located within the centre is a must see sight to visit. Whether you are planning to purchase tickets to go inside the church or just want to visit the church to admire the architecture from the outside. Although the church is still currently under construction it is still breath-taking. If you are planning to purchase tickets to go inside though make sure you pre-book your tickets as the church is a big tourist attraction which sells out rather fast.

You can pre-book tickets to go inside Sagrada Familia: here

Font Montjuic Fountain: This may be one of the prettiest sights to see within the city. Among many stunning buildings the fountain can be a peaceful sight to visit and relax. Although during the evening the fountain can get very crowded with people gathering to see the light and music show which starts at 9pm most nights.

You can read more about the fountains: here
We would love to know what other sights you explored while in Barcelona? What would you recommend we do next time we visit?

You can see our other Barcelona posts here:

Love Chloe and Megan 

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