Of all cities in Italy, Milan is one of the most difficult to get acquainted with. Keeping visitors at arm’s reach, local life here can seem impenetrable to outsiders – but not anymore. Our unique Milan wine tours combine a canal district stroll, visiting the most atmospheric part of the city (and the most popular among locals once the sun goes down) with regional wines and appetizers exploring some of the liveliest bars in the area.
Travelling with an expert local guide, you’ll gain insight into the food, culture and history of the city. And with small groups of only 15 people or fewer, your tour will feel more like a relaxed evening out with friends.
Our tour centers around the famous Navigli area of Milan – the canals. Once upon a time, these were the primary form of defense, irrigation and transport in the city, with a huge network spanning several miles. Alas, most of these waterways were filled in during the 1930s. Only two remain, forming the heart of Milan’s more bohemian center – full of bookshops, artists’ studios, informal cafes and bars. This is where the Milanese come to kick back at the end of the day, to relax with friends and family and to enjoy the Italian custom of il dolce far niente – the sweetness of doing nothing.
Get a taste of this other side of the city on our Milan canal tour. We start at what’s known as the 'big canal' where you’ll relax over a glass of wine with your guide and group. Once finished, your guide will lead you on a relaxed stroll of the area, and on to the smaller, more picturesque canal. As you walk they’ll teach you about the history of the area – what did Da Vinci and Napoleon have to do with the Navigli and what’s that strange smell of detergent? Your local guide has all the answers and they’ll keep you entertained with stories and anecdotes as you stroll.
The next stop on our Milan wine tour is one of the city’s most 'in' wine bars, where you’ll enjoy some more regional wine alongside a selection of local specialties such as cheese, meats, olives and local breads. The bar staff will get involved here (it’s a friendly spot), helping your guide to explain what each delicacy is and what makes it unique to this area. Feel free to ask any questions you can think of – your guide will create a relaxed and interactive environment where you can quiz them or chat with your fellow travelers about your experience of the city so far.
Passing more art studios, boutique stores, specialty bars and bookstores, we’ll continue on our exploration of Milan’s artistic heart, watching as the neighborhood comes to life with the sound of music and laughter. This is Milan at its most relaxed and least guarded, a breath of fresh air for many visitors.
We’ll finish our evening in true Italian style with aperitivo, or evening drink with appetizers. Enjoy another drink and help yourself to all kinds of local specialties as you chat with your guide and group. Take this chance to get some recommendations from your guide on what else you should do during your time in Milan – what sights to see, what other bars to explore and which restaurants to sample.
Combining a taste of local Milanese culture with an exploration of its food and wine, we offer you an authentic local experience to help you dig a little deeper, peeking behind the curtains of Italy’s most fashionable city.