Welcome to the marvelous city of Milan, a destination that not only captivates with its undeniable charm but also its accessibility for all travelers! Designed with inclusivity in mind, Milan offers a plethora of options for tourists in wheelchairs, ensuring that everyone can relish its countless beauties.
Located in the Lombardy region, in northern Italy, Milan lies in the Po Valley, one of the most developed regions in Italy. This location at the heart of Europe made the city a significant communication hub for centuries, both by land and water, with a canal network, known as "Navigli", previously used for the transportation of goods.
With the fall of the Roman Empire, Milan underwent several barbaric invasions. Nonetheless, in spite of these tribulations, the city managed to retain some degree of significance and continued to flourish.
During the Middle Ages, Milan became a Duchy and underwent a period of growth and expansion. In the 15th century, under the leadership of the Sforza family, the city emerged as a center for arts and letters, attracting artists such as Leonardo da Vinci among many others.
In the 20th century, Milan endured two world wars. However, the city showcased remarkable resilience and, in the post-war era, became Italy's economic engine, shining in fields like fashion, design, food, and football.
Throughout its history, Milan has displayed an outstanding ability to adapt and evolve, becoming the vibrant and diverse city it is today. Its history is evident in its striking architecture, monuments, and museums, and in the attitude of its inhabitants, who balance a deep appreciation for their history and culture with a zeal for innovation and progress.
With a population of around 1.4 million people, it is Italy's second-most populous city after Rome. But don't be fooled by its cosmopolitan modernity. Milan has deep roots dating back over two thousand years, making it a fascinating blend of antiquity and avant-garde.
Milan houses the Italian Stock Exchange (Borsa Italiana), located in Palazzo Mezzanotte, signifying the city's financial prominence. Moreover, it's globally renowned for hosting Milan Fashion Week, one of the sector's paramount events.
Now, let's discuss Milan's accessibility for wheelchair tourists. Milan prides itself on being an accessible city, with numerous services and amenities tailored for visitors with limited mobility. Many of its iconic tourist sites, including the majestic Duomo, the splendid Teatro alla Scala, and the exquisite Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, are wheelchair-friendly. The city buses come with wheelchair ramps, and most subway stations are elevator-equipped.
However, planning ahead is essential as some older sites may have limitations due to their historic architecture. Overall, the city strives to make everyone feel welcome and comfortable.
Milan is also famed for its cuisine. Its most iconic dish is probably "risotto alla milanese", a creamy rice cooked with saffron, giving it its signature yellow hue. Nonetheless, you can't leave without tasting the "cotoletta alla milanese", a breaded veal cutlet, another star dish of the city.
For dessert lovers, we have Panettone, a fluffy cake brimming with candied fruits and raisins. It's a Milanese delight typically enjoyed during the Christmas season but can be found in local bakeries all year round.
Milan isn't just a destination for fashion and food enthusiasts. Art lovers will marvel at Leonardo da Vinci's "Last Supper", one of the world's most renowned paintings, located in the Santa Maria delle Grazie convent. Ensure you book in advance as visitor numbers are restricted, and accessing the painting isn't fully wheelchair accessible, as it requires ascending to a first floor with no available elevator.
Milan is a city of ongoing growth and change, always at the forefront, but deeply rooted in a rich history and culture. The city has something to offer every visitor, regardless of their interests or accessibility needs. Come explore this Italian gem and discover why so many travelers worldwide have it on their "must-visit cities" list. We await you in Milan with open arms.
In general, tourist offices in Milan are usually accessible for people with limited mobility. These are located at strategic points in the city, such as Piazza del Duomo in the city center and at the Milan airports (Malpensa Airport and Linate Airport).
At Malpensa Airport, the tourist information office is located in Terminal 1 and provides a wide range of services, from information about the city and events to hotel reservations. Linate Airport also has a tourist information office.
In the city center, one of the main tourist information offices is located in the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, in Piazza del Duomo. This office not only provides information and brochures about Milan but also offers services such as selling the MilanoCard, a tourist card that offers discounts and benefits at various places in the city.
APT (Azienda di Promozione Turistica) Central Tourist Office.
- Via Marconi, 1 (on one of the corners of Piazza Duomo).
- Phone: (+39) 02 72524300
- Hours: Monday to Friday from 8:45 AM to 1:00 PM and from 2:00 PM to 5:45 PM. Saturdays and Sundays: from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM and from 2:00 PM to 4:45 PM
Tourist Information Office. Central Railway Station, 1st floor.
- Phone: (+39) 02 72524360
- Hours: Monday to Saturday from 8:00 AM to 7:00 PM. Sundays from 9:00 AM to 12:30 PM and from 1:30 PM to 6:00 PM
Tourist Information Office (city and province information).
- Piazza Castelo, 1 (corner of Via Beltrami).
- Phone: (+39) 02 77404343
- Hours: Monday to Friday from 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM. Saturdays from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM and from 2:00 PM to 6:00 PM. Sundays from 9:00 AM to 1:30 PM and from 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Tourist information offices will be closed on December 25th, January 1st, and May 1st.
The MilanoCard is a tourist card designed to help visitors explore the city of Milan easily and affordably. The card offers various benefits, such as free or discounted access to several museums, attractions, tours, and services in the city.
Access to museums and attractions: With the MilanoCard, you'll have free or discounted entry to a range of museums and points of interest. These may include the Leonardo da Vinci Science and Technology Museum, the Pinacoteca Ambrosiana, The Last Supper (advance reservation required), and many others.
Free public transportation: The MilanoCard also includes unlimited travel on Milan's public transportation system, including buses, trams, and the metro, making it easy to get around the city.
Discounts on tours and activities: You can also get discounts on various tours and activities, including guided tours, bike rentals, and culinary experiences.
Other services: Some versions of the card may offer additional services such as free mobile Wi-Fi, discounts at selected shops and restaurants, and emergency medical assistance.
There are different types of MilanoCard available based on the duration of validity, ranging from 24 hours to several days, depending on your needs. We recommend checking the official MilanoCard website for the most up-to-date details, as benefits and conditions may change.
It's important to note that while the MilanoCard makes many attractions more financially accessible, visitors should ensure that attractions are also physically accessible, especially wheelchair users. Although Milan has worked to improve its accessibility, some historic buildings may not be 100% accessible. Therefore, it's best to contact the attractions in advance to verify accessibility.
Milan Airport, officially called Malpensa Airport, is located 35 km from the center of Milan and has 2 terminals (T1 and T2).
It is an airport equipped to handle the needs of passengers in wheelchairs, taking accessibility very seriously, and offers various design features to facilitate the transit of passengers with disabilities:
Ramps and Elevators: The airport has ramps and elevators available in all areas, allowing wheelchair users to move easily between different levels of the airport.
Wide Hallways: Hallways are spacious to allow easy wheelchair passage.
Additionally, the airport offers a personal assistance service for passengers in wheelchairs. This service should be requested at least 48 hours before the flight through the airline you are flying with.
Wheelchairs: Wheelchairs are available at the airport for use. It is recommended to request this service in advance through the airline.
As expected, there are also adapted restrooms for wheelchair users. These are clearly marked and equipped with grab bars and ample maneuvering space.
There are help points and customer service counters throughout the airport. The staff at these points can provide information and assistance to passengers with reduced mobility. Furthermore, the airport terminal is designed to be as accessible as possible, with low check-in counters and well-marked customer service counters.
Transport from the Airport to the City Center:
To reach the city center of Milan from Malpensa Airport using accessible public transportation, you have two main options: train or bus.
Train - Malpensa Express:
The Malpensa Express is a train service that connects the airport to Milan Central Station (Milano Centrale) and other city stations like Milano Cadorna and Milano Porta Garibaldi.
Trains are designed to accommodate passengers with reduced mobility, with level boarding platforms and designated areas within the carriages for wheelchairs.
The train service typically runs every 30 minutes.
The journey to Milan Central Station takes around 50 minutes.
Malpensa Airport is served by several bus lines that offer direct service to Milan Central Station.
Buses have ramps and designated spaces for wheelchairs.
The bus journey to the city center usually takes around 50 minutes to 1 hour, depending on traffic.
Please note that while these services are designed to be accessible, it's always advisable to contact the transportation company to confirm the availability of accessibility services and, if necessary, make advance reservations. Additionally, it's recommended to check for updated schedules and service availability, as these may change.
One of the well-known bus companies operating this service is Autostradale, and their contact information is as follows:
- Website: www.autostradale.it
- Phone: (+39) 02 7200 1302
Transport Within the City:
Public transportation in Milan, Italy, is quite accessible for people with reduced mobility, including wheelchair users.
Local and suburban trains often have wheelchair facilities, but it is recommended to check the availability of such facilities before traveling. Moreover, major train stations in Milan, like Milano Centrale and Milano Porta Garibaldi, have infrastructure for people with reduced mobility, such as elevators and ramps.
Many trams in Milan are equipped with low-floor platforms to facilitate access. However, some older trams may not be wheelchair-accessible, so it's advisable to verify specific routes and schedules.
The Milan metro network is partially accessible for wheelchair users. Some older stations may still present barriers for people with reduced mobility, such as a lack of elevators or ramps. However, most of the newer or renovated metro stations are equipped with these facilities.
The Metro has three lines that converge at Duomo, Centrale FS, Loreto, and Cadrona. Tickets for the Metro must be validated at SITAM machines or at the stations and can be purchased at various sales points, usually identified with a "T."
Buses in Milan are equipped with wheelchair ramps and designated seating areas. Furthermore, the city's public transportation company, Azienda Trasporti Milanesi or ATM, has been working to ensure that all bus stops are accessible, making transfers between metro, bus, and tram easier.
It is advisable to hail a taxi from a properly marked taxi stand, but you can also book the service from a hotel or flag one down on the street. Taxis are typically white or yellow and identified with their license number and the city's shield.
There are taxi and rental vehicle services in Milan that are equipped to transport wheelchairs. It's recommended to book these services in advance to ensure availability.
Additionally, there are special services and programs aimed at improving accessibility and mobility for people with disabilities, such as ATM's "Personalized Transport" service, which provides door-to-door transportation for individuals with severe disabilities who cannot use regular public transportation. To use this service, users must meet certain criteria and require pre-registration.
Specific information about the accessibility of public transportation in Milan may change over time, so it's advisable to seek updated and detailed information on the official websites of the city's transportation authorities.
Let's start at Milan Central Station, which is completely wheelchair accessible with elevators and ramps available. From here, you can take an adapted taxi or an accessible bus to the city center.
Our first destination is the magnificent Milan Cathedral (Duomo di Milano), located in Piazza del Duomo. The cathedral is wheelchair accessible and offers a ramp on the right side of the main entrance. The interior is breathtaking, and it's worth taking the time to admire its details.
Right next to the cathedral, you'll find the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, one of the world's oldest shopping malls. This elegant building is completely accessible and features restaurants, luxury shops, and cafes. Here, you can stop for a coffee or simply enjoy the architecture.
Leaving the gallery, turn right and walk along Via Dante until you reach Sforza Castle (Castello Sforzesco), which is an impressive castle with a large park, Parco Sempione. There are ramps and elevators at the castle, and most of the interior museums are wheelchair accessible.
From the castle, continue southeast on Via Meravigli until you reach the Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie, home to Leonardo da Vinci's famous painting, The Last Supper. Unfortunately, the painting is on an upper floor and is not wheelchair accessible. However, the church itself is accessible to people with mobility issues and is worth a visit.
After visiting the church, you can take tram 16 from Corso Magenta to Porta Ticinese and the Navigli district, known for its canals and vibrant nightlife. There are many wheelchair-accessible restaurants and bars along the canal, making it a perfect place to end your day in Milan.
I hope you enjoy your visit to Milan. Remember that it's always helpful to plan ahead and check the accessibility of the places you plan to visit.
Ristorante Pizzeria Maruzzella: https://www.pizzeriamaruzzellamilano.it/
This restaurant, open for over 40 years, is famous for its Campania-style pizzas and seafood. It is known to be wheelchair accessible and has adapted restrooms.
Address and contact
- Piazza Oberdan (Porta Venezia), 3 Milan
- Phone: 02 29525729
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
God Save the Food: https://www.godsavethefood.it/
"God Save the Food" focuses on fresh and healthy cuisine, with an emphasis on high-quality ingredients. Vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options are available. Dishes range from salads and fresh juices to pasta, pizzas, and grilled meats. They also often offer a variety of desserts.
Address and contact:
Obicà Mozzarella Bar - Duomo: https://www.obica.com/
Obicà serves a variety of mozzarellas, from classic buffalo mozzarella to more specialized and artisanal options. Their menu also includes other Italian dishes such as pizzas, pastas, salads, antipasti, and desserts. They usually have a selection of Italian wines as well.
Address and contact
- Food Hall 7th Floor Rinascente Milano Piazza Duomo. Milan, Italy
- Phone: (+39) 02 8852453
- Email: email@example.com
These restaurants are known for their accessibility and offer a range of culinary experiences in Milan.