Great Reasons Why Rome Is Better Than Milan

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Rome and Milan are among the most iconic cities in the world and although both are legendary in their own right, there are still a lot of differences between the two. While it’s certainly worth visiting the two largest metropolitan cities in Italy, each has its own unique characteristics and opportunities which will suit certain people better than others. If you have to choose between the two cities, which one should you choose?

Rome Vs Milan – Which City Is Better For First Time Visitors?

Rome is Italy’s capital city and has a breathtaking array of galleries, museums, historical monuments, stunning parks and beautiful architecture, all steeped in over 3000 years of living history. With more than 10 million tourists visiting the Eternal City each year, it’s undoubtedly Italy’s most popular destination for first-time visitors. You can spend days visiting the Colosseum, the Pantheon, Saint Peter’s Basilica, the Vatican Museum, Trevi Fountain, the Spanish Steps and the Roman Forum.

Milan on the other hand is more of a ‘working city’ that is best known for being one of the four Fashion Capitals in the world as well as its powerful banking, financial and industrial sectors. Milan has outstanding shopping districts and is home to many of the biggest brands in fashion but the city’s main Cathedral, the Leonardo Da Vinci Museum of Science and Technology, La Scala Opera House and Da Vinci’s Last Supper painting are all major tourist attractions in themselves.

There is no doubt that Rome is a better city for first time visitors.

Rome Vs Milan – Should I Spend More Time In Rome Or Milan?

For most tourists, Rome is the better of the two cities to visit. Rome is the cradle of Western Civilization and as you explore its piazzas and streets you’ll soon get the impression that you’re walking around an open-air museum! If you’re a culture vulture and want to see some of the finest art, sculptures, museums and churches in the world, then Rome is definitely the right choice for you.

Regardless of whether you want to take a weekend break in Rome or spend several weeks getting to know the city a little better, you won’t be disappointed as a first-time visitor. There’s a great range of hotels, restaurants and cafes on hand, so even if you’re on a tight budget you can still have a fantastic experience in Rome. Naturally, if your budget allows you can treat yourself to top-class 5-star hotels and exquisite fine-dining restaurants during your time in the city.

Meanwhile, Milan is a shopper’s paradise and is home to one of the most prestigious fashion districts on the globe. Centered around the ‘Golden Quadrilateral’, Milan’s shopping districts, and particularly the outstanding Via Montenapoleone, are absolutely unmissable for any true fashionista! Milan is also well known for its superb restaurants and luxury hotels but much of the city is very business-like and focused on productivity rather than tourism.

Milan has its fair share of spectacular architecture, most famously the grand and imposing Duomo di Milano, which is one of the best examples in Europe of Gothic architecture at its peak. However, there are also a lot of modern, unattractive buildings in the center of the city and so as a first-time visitor, you won’t come away with the same sense of awe as you would do if you visited Rome instead.

Lastly, if you’re visiting with a tight budget it’s much harder to find good accommodation and enjoy yourself in Milan than in Rome. Overall, whether you’re visiting as a family, a couple or a solo traveler, Rome is likely to be the best option for you.

Pro Tip: The only reasons for visiting Milan if you are first time visitor is if you want to see the Duomo di Milano, Leonardo’s Last Supper painting or the fashion district.

Rome Vs Milan – Which City Has The Better Weather?

Rome has a very comfortable climate. During the summer, the weather is hot, sometimes humid, and sometimes dry and parched. The winters can be quite long, cold and wet with a lot of cloud cover. Throughout the year, the temperatures vary from 20 Degrees Fahrenheit to around 95 Degrees Fahrenheit, with temperatures rarely dipping below 25 Degrees Fahrenheit or rising above 90 Degrees Fahrenheit.

Milan has a slightly colder climate than Rome since it’s further North and closer to the mountains. During the summers the weather is warm and humid while the winters can be very cold. Over the course of the year, temperatures range from around 20 Degrees Fahrenheit in the winter to 90 Degrees Fahrenheit in the summer months.

Essentially, Rome has a more Mediterranean climate than Milan although during the winter the freezing weather in Milan does give the city a beautiful covering of snow. Sadly, both cities suffer from air pollution although the smog in Milan is considerably worse than in Rome. The ideal time to visit either Rome or Milan is during the spring or in the early summer.

Rome Vs Milan – Which City Is Better For Relocating?

Rome and Milan both offer relocating Expats a fantastic quality of life, however, the best city for your relocation will largely depend on why you’re planning to move to Italy. If you’re moving to pursue your career or find a new job then both cities might be suitable, but if you’re going to retire then Rome has much more to offer you in a cultural context.

Each city is an economic powerhouse although there are significant differences in the types of industry which are based in each one. Rome is a major world center for multinational Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), high-tech companies, aerospace and defense companies as well as large telecommunications firms, banking and research institutions.

By contrast, Milan, often described as the ‘economic engine of Italy’, has a lot more heavy industry than Rome. Its main industries include fashion, textiles, design and media. Milan also has Italy’s main stock exchange and a high concentration of banks, chemical corporations and manufacturing industries.

Both Rome and Milan have large tourist sectors and plenty of opportunities for teaching English as a foreign language (TEFL).

Rome Vs Milan – Is Rome Cheaper Than Milan?

The cost of living in Rome is slightly cheaper than in Milan, although this does depend on your lifestyle and the choices you make!

The average cost of living in Rome for a family of 4 is just under 3000 Euros per month, excluding rent. For a single person in Rome, the average cost of living is around 830 Euros per month, excluding rent. In Milan, the average cost of living for a family of 4 costs around 3,300 Euros per month and 930 Euros per month for a single person. Rents in Milan are also higher than in Rome, on average.

In terms of rent, a 1 bedroom apartment in Rome’s city center costs around 1000 Euros per month while a 1 bedroom apartment outside the city center costs around 700 Euros per month. For a 3 bedroom apartment in the city center rent averages at about 2,200 Euros per month and outside the city center a 3 bedroom apartment costs roughly 1,300 Euros per month.

For a 1 bedroom apartment in the Milanese city center, the rent is approximately 1,300 Euros per month and just over 800 Euros per month outside of the city center. For a 3 bedroom apartment in the city center rents average at around 2,600 Euros per month and for a 3 bedroom apartment outside of the city center, the rent is roughly 1,600 Euros per month.

Pro Tip: Overall Milan is a more expensive city whether you are thinking of living and working in the city or visiting for a few days.

Rome Vs Milan – Which City Is Better For Students?

If you’re planning to move to Italy to pursue your academic studies then Milan is probably the better option for you. Not only does Milan have several world-class universities (Polytechnic University of Milan, University of Milan and the Bocconi University), but it also has some super-hip districts where you can meet new friends and enjoy the best of Italy’s nightlife! If you’re worried about the cost of living as a student in Milan then you can live quite cheaply in student districts such as Citta Studi and Lambrate.

Milan’s top universities excel in a wide range of subjects, so selecting the right institution is vital for you to make the most of the experience. For example, the Polytechnic University of Milan is Italy’s biggest technical university and specializes in architecture, design and engineering. Meanwhile, the University of Milan is one of the largest in Europe and teaches great courses in more theoretical subjects.

Rome has several very good universities as well. Sapienza University of Rome, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Roma Tre University, Guglielmo Marconi University and Foro Italico University of Rome are some of the major universities. Rome is also cheaper to live, which is important if you are a student. However, in Rome students have to live fairly close to their universities because public transportation can be a little unreliable because of frequent strikes.

Rome Vs Milan – Which City Is Better For A Vacation?

For the average tourist, Rome is head and shoulders above Milan as a vacation destination, particularly if you’ve never been there before. You’ll be amazed by the magnificence of the ancient city and with hundreds of churches, galleries, museums and historical monuments to visit, you’ll never be short of ideas for a day of sightseeing.

As well as the major highlights, such as the Vatican itself, the Roman Colosseum, the Pantheon, the Spanish Steps and Trevi Fountain, you can also explore the city’s many street markets, shopping districts and beautiful parks. In the evening, you can take a stroll through the cobblestoned streets after having your dinner in a friendly, family-run restaurant that serves local favorites at very reasonable prices.

Rome is also centrally located in Italy which means if you want to see more of the country during your vacation you can take short trips to see Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius, visit Capri or discover the magic of the Amalfi Coast.

All in all, Rome is one of Italy’s best vacation destinations and although Milan does have great shopping and a few famous landmarks, it’s hard to compete with the Eternal City of Rome.

Rome Vs Milan – Which City Is Better For Shopping?

Rome has a lovely selection of independent boutiques, indoor and outdoor markets, as well as the famous Via Dei Condotti, where you can find top brands such as Dior, Gucci, and Dolce & Gabbana. However, when compared to Milan, Rome is left in the dust!

Milan is one of the world’s four Fashion Capitals and has earned this reputation for good reasons. Milan is any shopaholic’s dream come true, with hundreds of haute couture boutiques, world-famous flagship stores and a whole district of the city dedicated to designer shopping, known as the Quadrilatero Della Moda!

Rome Vs Milan – Which Is Better For History And Culture?

Rome has more historical monuments, museums, galleries, fountains, churches, piazzas, medieval buildings and tourist attractions than almost anywhere else on the planet! What’s more, Rome’s 3000 years of history and culture have been lovingly cared for and preserved, even including ancient aqueducts, the Colosseum itself and, of course, the Vatican.

This tireless, intergenerational dedication to the city’s heritage has made it one of the most exciting places to visit if you want to immerse yourself in the culture and history of Italy, both past and present.

While Milan has an interesting cultural heritage which includes Da Vinci’s most famous work of art, The Last Supper painting, the city can’t really compare to Rome. In fact, in all fairness, there probably isn’t a city anywhere in Europe that can compete with Rome when it comes to its cultural and historical attractions!

Rome Vs Milan – Each City Has Its Own Unique Charms.

If you’re trying to decide which city, Rome or Milan, is best for you it’s worth taking some time to consider exactly why you’re planning to visit. For instance, if you’re planning to study in Italy then Milan is the better choice but if you’re visiting for a vacation then Rome is, without doubt, the best option. For shopping, Milan is hard to beat whereas for long-term relocation or studying, both cities have pros and cons that you need to consider in relation to your personal circumstances.

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