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Things to do in Lombardy

Things to do in  Lombardy

Welcome to Lombardy

Lombardy may be Italy’s financial and industrial capital, but this region—home to the highest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the country—is also rich in history and culture. Visitors marvel at Leonardo da Vinci’s “Last Supper” in Milan, hop on the Bernina Express scenic railway to Switzerland, soak in the rarified atmosphere of Lake Como and Lake Garda, explore the medieval hearts of Bergamo and Brescia, sip bubbly in the Franciacorta wine country, take on Livigno’s ski slopes, and visit the world’s largest collection of prehistoric petroglyphs at Valcomonica.

Top 15 attractions in Lombardy

Da Vinci's Last Supper (Il Cenacolo)

Each day, Leonardo da Vinci's The Last Supper (Il Cenacolo) draws hundreds of art-loving visitors to the unassuming refectory of the Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie for just 15 minutes with the painting. Arguably Milan's most famous 15th-century wall mural, you must book entrance tickets in advance or sign up for a guided Milan city tour to see it up close.More

Milan Duomo

The most exuberant example of Northern Gothic architecture in Italy, the spiky spires and towers of Milan's Duomo (Duomo di Milano) dominate Piazza del Duomo, the city's beating heart. One of the highlights of a visit to the cathedral is the view from the roof, where you can scope out Milan from the highest terrace surrounded by statues. On a clear day, it’s possible to see the Italian Alps.More

Sforza Castle (Castello Sforzesco)

Sforza Castle (Castello Sforzesco) is a medieval fortress built by the Visconti dynasty that became home to Milan’s ruling Sforza family in 1450. Stark and domineering, the historic brick castle has massive round battlements, an imposing tower overlooking the central courtyard and surrounding Parco Sempione gardens, and defensive walls designed by Leonardo da Vinci. Today the castle houses a number of world-class museums and galleries.More

Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II

In the fashion capital of Italy, the glass-domed Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II shopping arcade—one of the oldest in Europe—never goes out of style. Sandwiched by the Milan Duomo on one side and the Piazza di Marino on the other, Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II is a bright and airy 4-story center full of restaurants and shops. Come for the neoclassical architecture; stay for the brands and fresh baked panzerotti.More

La Scala Opera House (Teatro alla Scala)

La Scala Opera House (Teatro alla Scala), one of the world’s greatest opera houses, has hosted some of Italy’s most famous opera and other performances. Located in downtown Milan, this 18th-century theater and cultural landmark—magnificently restored in 2004—seats many of its 2,000 spectators in elegant boxes adorned with gold leaf and red velvet.More

Villa del Balbianello

Villa del Balbianello is one of a number of elegant historic villas that sit directly on the water’s edge at Lake Como. On the tip of a small promontory on the lake’s western shore, Balbianello is particularly lovely, with luxurious interiors, scenic loggia, beautiful gardens, and romantic lake views.More


Set on the tip of a promontory jutting out into the waters of Lake Garda, and guarded by the fairy-tale-like Scaliger Castle, Sirmione is one of the most picturesque villages in Italy’s northern lake district. Explore the town’s postcard-perfect center and sights such as the nearby Roman Grottoes of Catullus.More

Como-Brunate Funicular Railway (Funicolare Como–Brunate)

This historic single-track funicular railway has been carrying passengers up and down the steep mountain slope between the lakeside city of Como and the village of Brunate since 1894. The 7-minute ride passes through a scenic stretch of countryside with sweeping views over Italy’s Lake Como as far as the Swiss Alps.More

Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie (Chiesa di Santa Maria delle Grazie)

Built by Duke Francesco I Sforza and later reworked by Bramante, the modest 15th-century Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie (Chiesa di Santa Maria delle Grazie) is known for housing one of Italy’s most celebrated works of Renaissance art—Leonardo da Vinci’s The Last Supper, which decorates the refectory wall of the adjoining Dominican convent.More


Milan boasts a number of trendy neighborhoods thick with hip bars, restaurants, and clubs. Of these, the Brera district—a maze of narrow, cobblestone streets lined with boutiques and cafés near the Duomo in the city center—is perhaps the most beautiful thanks to its laid-back pace and old-world charm.More

Piazza Mercanti

Centuries before Piazza del Duomo became Milan’s main square, medieval Piazza Mercanti was the heart of the city. Marking the center of Milan’s historic center, this charming space is lined by porticoed palaces dating from the Middle Ages and offers a picturesque counterpoint to the rest of the city’s stately majesty.More

Villa Melzi Gardens (Giardini di Villa Melzi)

One of a clutch of historic villas that ring Lake Como, the 19th-century Villa Melzi d’Eril is surrounded by its lush Villa Melzi Gardens (Giardini di Villa Melzi. The villa is closed to the public, but the botanical gardens offer walking paths directly along the lakeshore that make for a peaceful respite from the crowds of Bellagio.More

Te Palace (Palazzo Te)

Pull yourself away from Mantua’s elegant Piazza delle Erbe to visit another Renaissance gem, this one just outside the city center: Palazzo Te. Built in the 16th century as a retreat for Duke Federico II Gonzaga, this lavish palace and garden are testimony to the wealth and power the Gonzaga dynasty wielded for almost four centuries.More

Ducale Palace (Palazzo Ducale Mantova)

For centuries, Mantua’s vast Palazzo Ducale was the seat of the Gonzaga dynasty, one of the most powerful during the Renaissance. Explore dozens of the palace’s sumptuous rooms (there are 500 in all), admiring art and lavishly decorated halls such as the whimsically frescoed Camera degli Sposi.More

Church of San Maurizio al Monastero Maggiore (Chiesa di San Maurizio al Monastero Maggiore)

Milan’s best-preserved 16th-century church, the Church of San Maurizio al Monastero Maggiore (Chiesa di San Maurizio al Monastero Maggiore) features frescoes by Bernardino Luini as well as the oldest pipe organ in the city. It is also home to the Archaeological Museum of Milan (Museo Archeologico di Milano), which displays artifacts from the Etruscans, Greeks, and Romans.More

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Top activities in Lombardy

Milan Duomo & The Last Supper Skip the Line Guided Tour
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Skip the Line: Last Supper Tour in Milan
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Historic Milan Tour with Skip-the-Line Last Supper Ticket
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Last Supper Tickets and Guided tour
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Milan Half-Day Tour Including da Vinci's 'Last Supper', Duomo & La Scala Theatre
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Best of Milan Experience Including Da Vinci's The Last Supper and Milan Duomo
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The secrets to learn fresh pasta and tiramisù
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Last Supper Ticket and Milan Half-Day Tour
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