A variety of environments so hard to imagine in a few kilometers from Milan
The story of the north Italy, moves from Lombardy , as well as the history of the development and industrialization of Italy. But Lombardy is also the region where the impressive mountains of the Alps, bordering Switzerland, meet the Pò valley crossed by rivers, giving rise to the natural wonders that are its lakes. Travelers from all over the world, now as in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, are fascinated and attracted by the lakes Como, Maggiore, Iseo and Garda, admiring the sumptuous villas by beautiful gardens, islands and small villages scattered along the banks.
The wealth of historical traditions secular Lombard, almost forgotten in the great cities of business, get together, genuine and heartfelt, just in the provinces and villages around the lakes and mountains. A great way to discover the Lombardy are the many itineraries food and wine tours, real passe-partout to dig into the different stories of valleys, rivers, or major cities such as Pavia, Varese, Lodi, Cremona, Mantua, Brescia, Bergamo, Como, Lecco and Sondrio .
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Thousands of years of history, with periods of splendor during which he had primary historical roles, Milan is fully part of the great Italian cities of art that preserve famous monuments of the past. An important economic center, cultural and financial, with the Stock Exchange, a number of prestigious academic universities, museums and locations of the major publishing houses. The center of gravity of the city is the Cathedral, which with the Virgin Mary is the symbol of the city, around which there is the eventful life of Milan, which has as main stage area between the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele, Via Dante, Via Manzoni, Corso Vittorio Emanuele and Corso Venezia . This is also the area most exclusive of shopping, theaters, cinemas. The Sforzesco Castle, Sant’Ambrogio, San Lorenzo Maggiore, Santa Maria delle Grazie with Leonardo’s Last Supper, the Brera Art Gallery, the Museum of Science and Technology, the Poldi Pezzoli Museum, to name just a few of the most famous, are part of a cultural itinerary that with the Piccolo Teatro alla Scala make Milan a place, perhaps unexpected, of great tourist attraction. But next to the historic Milan is also a city of taverns, restaurants by refined or sophisticaded cuisine , and the Milan nightlife districts typically include the Brera and Navigli.
The Lombardy region is determined by the orogeny of the mountains on one side and from the Po Valley on the other. In the north, the Alps and the Alps are dotted by ponds of beautiful lakes, among which the most important are Lake Maggiore, Lake Garda, Lake Como and Lake Iseo. The shape and size of the lake determine a climate that favors the emergence of a Mediterranean vegetation, typical of maritime areas further south such as olives, lemons and limes. Among the rivers, the most important is certainly the Po, which crosses the Po Valley and collects the waters of almost all the other rivers flowing down from the Alps or the Alps of Lombardy, while the rivers that originate in the Apennines are shorter. The most important rivers worth mentioning the Adda, Oglio, the Ticino and the Churches. Among the hills that ‘Oltrepò bunting is the most beautiful and interesting. Numerous ski resorts, such as the Tonale, the Valtellina, and the Valmalenco Valley Seriana.
At St. Ambrose (December 7), the patron saint of Milan, is dedicated to the most important festival of the city with religious celebrations, fairs and traditional spotlight on the theater Scale, which depicts the “first ” of its opera season. Also in the capital, throughout the year, markets are held on the banks of canals and the first 10 days of June are dedicated to the Feast of Navigli canals, with parades, music and other events. In the two exhibition centers of Milan hosts many exhibitions such as Macef, dedicated to items for the home, or the Miart, international exhibition of modern and contemporary art. At Monza in September at the Autodromo Nazionale runs the Italian Grand Prix in Formula One. In the same city, in June, there is the Feast of St. John the Baptist, with fireworks in the setting of Villa Reale and the commemoration of Queen Theodolinda. At Magenta, has become a tradition that the re-enactment of the Battle of Magenta in 1859 (in June) with hundreds of extras that reproduce the highlights of the famous battle. In Legnano in May takes place the famous Palio, with pageants and horse races.
HOW TO GET THERE
By Plane. Milan is served by the airports of Malpensa, Linate and Orio al Serio Airport, which fly most of the international and national companies. Among the major Italian cities are connected: Rome, Trieste, Lamezia Terme, Bari, Palermo, Alghero, Cagliari, Catania, Trapani, Pescara, Naples, Olbia Reggio Calabria, Brindisi, Foggia Lampedusa, Pantelleria and Salerno.
By Train. Milan is one of the main rail hub of northern Italy, and is therefore easy to get to from any city of the Penisola.
By Car. From Milan branch out five major highways: the Milano-Laghi, the Milan-Turin-Aosta, the Milan-Genoa, Milan-Venice and the A1 Milan-Bologna
The Lombardy hides a long series of scenic treasures and artistic essentials, and boasts seven sites included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site. The first to be put on the list was the rock art of Valcamonica in 1979, one of the largest collections in the world of prehistoric rock carvings, which was followed by the church and Dominican convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie and the Last Supper of Leonado da Vinci in Milan, the industrial archeology in the village of Crespi d’Adda, the sacred mountains of Lombardy, Mantua and Sabbioneta, the Rhaetian Railway in the Albula and Bernina (Tirano) landscape. To the south of Milan runs a route not to be missed, among the monuments in Lombard terracotta, which starts from the beautiful Certosa di Pavia and continues to Vigevano, Pavia, Morimondo, Crema, Cremona, Soncino, Sant’Angelo Lodi, Lodi, between the hills of St. Columban al Lambro and Adda park. The shores of Lake Maggiore hidden treasures like the Hermitage of Santa Caterina del Sasso and the Rock of Angera, the best way to appreciate them is by boat, bouncing between the coast of Lombardy and Piedmont, between villages and islands. All Lake Garda is a discovery, from Sirmione, the town’s busiest, even for the archaeological site of the caves of Catullus, as the beautiful Villa Balbianello, , or that of ‘Iseo, with numerous tourist resorts. Do not forget the parks as Adamello, Grigna and Orobian
TRADITIONS AND FOLKLORE
In St. Columban al Lambro, on the fourth Sunday of September, there is the Grape Festival, with a parade of floats and food and wine. In July in Soncino will be seeking an appointment with the event in the Sforza Castle Night falls light up the Rock, in a quaint and charming medieval setting, between characters in period costume, soldiers and merchants, musicians, magicians and jugglers activities and traveling shows. The Antiques Market Bollate is held every first Sunday of the month. In Bovisio Masciago in November, is staged the Feast of St. Martin with the traditional “cutting of the coat” and historical parades. In Trezzo d’Adda, in February-March, the crazy Carnival Poor Piero with stake on the river. In September in Lacchiarella, the Palio of goose and the flea market.
AT THE TABLE
The cuisine of Lombardy has many characteristics that are different from area to area. Traditionally it has a kitchen with long cooking, boiled Sunday served with mustard, stews and sauces to suit be accompanied with polenta, then there are the rice, the typical Milanese with saffron and bone, not to mention the thin noodles egg homemade of the Po Valley. On the lakes are often the freshwater fish, such as perch, trout or small bleak fried or marinated. The Milanese cuisine is a blend of various regional cooking traditions. In Brianza are the risotto Monzese , which is a saffron similar to risotto Milanese, but with the addition of small pieces of sausage, the buseca (tripe), polenta uncia, cooked with various cheeses. Specialties of Lake Como and Lecco are the shad of the lake dried and pressed with bay leaves, or roast goose, chicken and pheasant stuffed. In Varese and in the area north of the capital, one of the dishes are polenta with bruscitt and luganiga, barley soup called urgiada and cookies to ancient tradition, such as “ugly but good” and the Saronno macaroons. In Valtellina using buckwheat, with which you make pizzocheri with cabbage, potatoes, ribs and served with butter, sage and cheese, and then the polenta taragna.
Among the salami bresaola from Valtellina is the queen, to be served thinly sliced with olive oil, lemon and pepper, a variant is the slinzegha, but other beef smoked. The Brescia and Bergamoarea are famous for polenta with osei, version of Brescia, with the birds cooked on a spit, or Bergamo, cooked in a pan, and also for casonsei, filled pasta with sausage or salami. Polenta is the real star of the area so much that accompanies first courses, second and even desserts, preparations that see enriched with sugar, eggs, honey, dried fruit and fresh. In the area of Mantua, Cremona and Crema stand out above all the variations of ravioli, tortellini as agnolini and Mantua (stuffed of pumpkin), or those Crema (with macaroons), or marubini Cremona. Among the meats, to quote the soft salami Mantua and the goose salami, typical mainly of Crema. Other specialties valances are pike in sauce, the sbrisolona cake, almonds and hazelnuts, and then the famous parmesan cheese grana padano. One of the most original and typical flavors of Cremona then there are the fruit chutney with mustard and the nougat, one of the oldest sweets
Milan is one of the major European destinations for shopping related to fashion, not just clothes, shoes and accessories as well as design objects, furnishing and household. The craft Lombard has seen more and more traditional artistic production increasing to high levels of quality, with materials ranging from precious metals to leather, from wicker to glass, from wood to the roots (for pipes). The province of Milan is also known for working silversmiths and goldsmiths. In Lodi, an ancient tradition that is slowly dying, is the production of handmade pottery. Some workshops have a long tradition in the manufacture of special musical instruments bowed and plucked, as in the case of the famous Cremonese makers who make violins with high quality and demand. Other materials manufactured by the skilled hands of the Lombard craftsmen are the iron,the soapstone, copper, wood and textiles (including embroidery). The Como area is famous throughout the world for its ability to create beautiful yarns and silk, obtained with sophisticated molding techniques
DID YOU KNOW…
… The Milan Cathedral being restored, using the Candoglia marble, white / pink or gray color, quarried in the town of Candoglia Mergozzo? It was Gian Galeazzo Visconti to grant, in 1387, the use of hollow Candoglia to the Venerable Fabbrica del Duomo, to extract from marble to be used in the construction of the cathedral, without paying duties.