Diana and I got to spend a whirlwind few days in Italy because of Diana's work. Our trip began in Milan the first morning after our arrival from Barcelona. After Diana's meeting and business lunch at the Politecnic University Of Milan (and, yes, lunch involved pizza), we spent a few hours exploring the center of Milan starting with a visit to the city's beautiful and highly-detailed cathedral (or Duomo in Italian):
One of the highlights of visiting the cathedral is being able to climb the stairs to the roof to check out the city's skyline. On the way up, you get to see the church details up close and the view's nice too.
About all I knew about Milan was that it's known for being a design hub and that it's often thrown in with the likes of Paris, New York, and Tokyo (no link, I went there before starting this blog but here's a link for all my Japan stories). I didn't really know what to expect in terms of the architecture but it ended up being surprisingly nice. Every city's got its must-see sights and Milan's no different. In addition to the cathedral, the glass-and-steel covered streets of the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele is another.
I probably could have posted about 20 different photos of beautiful buildings but the photos don't do them justice. I'll throw this one in as the huge statues out front are definitely unique and very cool:
Our first day ended with a fabulous Italian dinner (of course) at a restaurant in the nearby suburb of Bergamo, which served as our base for the first part of our trip. The next morning we headed over to the University of Bergamo where Diana led a seminar. It's always awesome when trips have a "sponsor". Diana leading the discussion:
After Diana's rockstar performance, we spent a couple of hours exploring the medieval-walled-town-on-a-hill Bergamo. I really ended up liking Bergamo as it's a lovely small town but still close enough to the big city of Milan (like 45 minutes) to be convenient.
Although the Italian surroundings were different, in a lot of ways it reminded me of other medieval towns that I've been to like Carcassonne (probably my favorite), Mont Saint Michel (in France), and Toledo (in Spain). The views of the "lower city" (downtown area) of Bergamo from the much-more-exclusive "high city":
Our second night in Italy ended uneventfully back at our rented apartment as we were both tired and had a busy next few days planned.
A quick note about the food in Italy. Yes, it's good. Yes, there's lots of pasta. And, finally, yes, almost every meal involves pizza or pasta or both. A friend in Barcelona said that I'd gain a few pounds in Italy and he may have been right. I'm not checking though.