Trains, Planes and Blistered Feet – Part Four

Last day in Milan. We had the whole day to kill as we had to catch the train to Paris the following morning. We rose from our slumber with a plan, then looked out the window at our Renaissance courtyard, and yes…it was raining again. We didn’t want that to dampen our feelings on Italy, so we got together, popped to the 24hour supermarket and returned with breakfast to get our plan in order. Lythia, as I said was well into Leonardo, and as soon as I mentioned that Milan had the Leonardo Museum, it was put on our list. Like normal, we really didn’t know where it was, apart from a dot on the Google Map reference, so we packed up and went to drop our bags off at the bistro/cafe with BagBnB. After a quick coffee we set off to find our goal.
As the drizzle patted down on our heads we made a move in the direction we had to go. But as usual we missed the junction a little (I blame Googles GPS system myself!). Anyway, with a small back track we found ourselves on the long road (literally) to the Leonardo Da Vinci Science Museum. On route we did discover many nice pieces of architecture , such as this archway with the old tramway going through it. Then as we approached the half way point on our journey, we came across a weird site. I needed to record it, and even to this day I still don’t have a clue to why this place exists.

So, at a junction down the road to the science museum, we discovered this little entity. It was a set of dolls that had been attached to the wall. To this day I had no real idea of what this was about, but I did find this article that explains the reasoning behind it all. We stood and gazed for a while, but the drizzling rain got the better of us. So we moved further through the student district to see more sites. We finally ended up at a metro station junction. To the left we saw a low, grey building that looked museum like, so we headed there. Only to discover it was the exit to the museum. Luckily, the kind assistant inside pointed us in the right direction, and we ended up standing in a queue of 30+ families all waiting to enter the museum.

I have to be honest here. I was expecting a little more of Leonardo in the Leonardo Museum, but what we found was a single room dedicated to his inventions. It was in itself a very nice insight into his work, but after you leave this exhibit, the whole rest of the building soon became a science museum of eclectic artefacts. Some of the displays worked, some didn’t, and for myself, having a load of screaming kids bustling around as well, made the whole even a damp squib on a dull day. We went through the whole place though, and ended up outside in a courtyard where we discovered annexes to the main museum. These were to be a little more interesting than the actual main building. For there contained within were train, plane and ship exhibits.
The exhibits started to bring out the boy in me, and I loved the smell and weight of all the Victorian engines and carriages. Being able to climb among some of them too was great. Lythia was not so impressed, but we were determined to look around the whole thing. After a brief stop for a sandwich in a garden area, we moved on to the ships and planes!
What greeted us as we entered the hall? Full sized galleon sunk into the three storey building. Sadly we could only walk around it, but it was a great exhibition and had loads to look at and see, with some replica Leonardo artwork spotted around. At this point we were getting a little tired, so we thought it time to head towards the bistro and lunch with a bag pickup.
We didn’t go directly there, so after our fond goodbyes, to probably the worst of our designated tour stops, we detoured to take in the Basilica Santa Maria delle Grazie, which was close by enough, and was on the list of places to see. The weather was a little better now too, so we had a nice stroll to the church, which unfortunately was under some repair at the front. It was swarming with people however, and we caught another glimpse of being a tourist in a tourist town. We broke away and with the Google Map at hand, headed away fro the Basilica.
Milan is an old town, and luckily the municipality has tried its hardest to keep it that way. It has all the old tram lines running through the city, as well as a plethora of delightful architecture sitting in open and tree-lined streets. All-in-all it is a very pleasant city to walk around, with many things to look at and snap pictures of.
Little did we know that Santa Maria delle Grazie was a little way out from the city centre and the Duomo. On the bright side however, we found that the road was long and straight, so we knew we weren’t going to get lost. This image above was one of my favourite moment on the journey. It has that gritty architectural look I adore about some cities. We carried on, and even though it was Sunday, the sound of shoppers and city folk started to get loader as we approached the main hub of the transport system. Just a little way out of the Duomo centre, there is a tram stop area which is bustling with all these beautiful and ornate old trams.

So, our final day was drawing to a close. We got to the bistro/cafe and collected our bags, and had our final meal to rest our bones on a long three days looking round a very rich and architecturally pretty city. The only thing that was left to do, after a quick respite at the Renaissance flat, was gift shopping. As we arrived at the flat, Marco was again there to greet us, at which point he said he had become quite familiar with us, and that it was his birthday. To which, I gave him two of my postcards as of my Celebrity Sunday, as a gift of his hospitality. That was Italy done! Tomorrow we had a 7 hour journey to Paris, via train, through the Alps!

Foot
10.20kms Milan Day Three

For part one of Milan, look here, part two here, and part three here!