ITALY : MILAN
The city proper has about 1,308,500 inhabitants (2004), but the
population of the urban area including the hinterland is about 4 million
and is called La Grande Milano (Greater Milan, 1,981 square kilometres).
Milan is Italy's most populous and prosperous
city, serving as the capital of commerce, finance, fashion, and media.
It's also Italy's transport hub, with the biggest international airport,
most rail connections, and best subway system. Leonardo Da Vinci's Last
Supper and other great works of art are here, as well as a spectacular
Milan's name has for many centuries been recorded as Mailand, which is
still the German name of the city today. It comes from the Celtic
Mid-lan (meaning "in the middle of the plain") and was known as
Mediolanum by the Romans.
The town is famous for fashion firms and shops (via Montenapoleone) and
the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele on the Piazza Duomo, reputed to be the
world's oldest shopping mall. Milan is one of the world capitals of
fashion, like New York City, Paris, London and Rome, and design. Indeed
the English word milliner is derived from the name of the city. Another
famed product of the city is the traditional Christmas sweet cake called
Panettone. Milan is also famous for the Alfa Romeo motorcar and for its
Not to be missed are the many splendid and unforgettable lakes
nearby Milan, offering superb facilities for visitors, with shops,
restaurants and cafes lining the lake fronts. Some of the most popular
lakes in the Milan region include Lake Maggiore, Lake Como and Lake
Garda, the three largest lakes in Italy.