Outdoor activity in Milan
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Updated 8 months ago

Milan offers an unlimited amount of possibilities for activities and nature getaways. Its location is the perfect mix between nature and urbanization, and so it is very easy to break free every once in a while.

Living in a metropolis has its downsides, and Milan is no different. Everyday life requires strong nerves for the constant rush and the pretentious business world that never gets tired. This is why weekend and free time activities are the best solutions for venting out. Living in Milan means having possibilities for everything, from mountain hiking to beach visits and it is only up to one's imagination to choose what activity suits the best.

In the warm days

Summer days make the city life difficult, especially as the climate in the gets very hot and humid. There is no reason for alarm, as it is very easy to visit the beach at the weekend. The closest beaches are located in Liguria, are around two-three hours distant and can be reached by car or by train.

Some of the best beach trips are:

Boccadasse is the closest beach (150 km from the city). It can be reached by bus from the Genoa station (the ticket costs around 15 euros) or by car.

Sestri Levante is around two and a half hours distant by train. This is one of the most beautiful Liguarian beaches and is known by the beach La Baia del Silenzio, that has been admired by poets such as Goethe and Lord Byron.

Portofino is around three and a half hours away from Milan (the station is Santa Margherita Ligure) and offers intimate and beautiful beaches and some of the most beautiful sunsets in Liguria.

Varazze and Cogoleto not only offer beautiful beaches but also have bike tracks that offer the possibility to travel up to Finale Ligure and Sanremo.

Recco and Levanto are around three to four hours away and are best reached by car. These cities are unique for their surf clubs and schools that (in case of good waves) offer the possibility to take surfing courses.

There are also excellent options to visit the surrounding lakes:

Lake Garda, the largest lake in Italy. It is located in three regions, Lombardy, Veneto and Trento and is famous as a holiday retreat.

Lago Maggiore, located in the Varese province and the border between Italy and Switzerland (the Ticino region)

Como Lake is so large that it offers the possibility to be visited from many cities like Como, Lecco, Bellano, Bellagio and Colico.

In the winter days

Milanese like skiing, but are not too fond of driving long hours for weekend trips. Luckily there are many possibilities to find excellent slopes close to the city. These slopes are usually popular targets and attract many people.

Some of the best and closest slopes are:

Piani di Bobbio, in the province of Lecco, is the nearest one with a good number of tracks, mainly suitable for beginners and intermediate skiers.

Only 2 km distant from it is Piani di Artavaggio which is mostly suitable for children and families.

Domobianca, located in Piemonte, is around 130 km from Milan. It is nice to visit and has mostly beginner and intermediate slopes.

Mottarone, in the province of Verbania, is an easily reachable location that offers eight ski lifts and about twenty kilometres of slopes.

Madesimo, only two hours from Milan, is located in the province of Sondrio. The area has slopes that start at an altitude of 2,800 meters, wide and ideal for children, but it offers also plenty of difficult tracks.

Livigno is the largest ski area in Valtellina. It is four hours away from Milan, and, even though it is not a very high area, thanks to favourable weather, allows skiing until late spring. Livigno offers slopes for every type of skiers.

For any season

Being close to the Alps and Dolomites, Milan is perfect for hiking. It allows possibilities for longer hikes and daily trekking excursions. Some interesting options are:
Monte Bollettone (1,317 m), in the province of Como
Monte Due Mani (1,666m), in the province of Lecco
Monte Resegone (1,875m), Between Lecco and Bergamo
Monte Grona (1,736m), Lecco

There are plenty of great options for outdoor mountain climbing, such as:
Falesia di Galbiate, good for climbing all year round
Rocca di Baiedo, that offers two climbing spots, via Folletto and Placca del Brivido
Falesia Lariosauro, close to Lecco
Carate Urio, close to Como

Milan has many options for doing sports inside the city. Many gyms and parks offer different membership options, but there are also many alternative ideas for those who seek for adrenaline:
Rock climbing: Passaggio Obbligato, Rockspot, Urban Wall
Beach volley: OpenBeach, Centro Sportivo Palauno, Play More, OpenBeach, Campo Beach Volley
Kitesurf: Idroscalo
Rowing: Canottieri Milano, Rowing San Cristoforo, Canottieri Olona 1894
Biking: Naviglio Pavese, Naviglio Martesana, Naviglio Grande
Running: Parco Sempione, Giardini pubblici Indro Montanelli

Milan is truly a city that makes laziness impossible. The great variety of options allows everyone to practice their sport, or to learn something new. The options are continually expanding, and new facilities, new activities and undiscovered places are yet to come.

Useful links:

Zingarate
Mente Locale
Dovesciare

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