What You Need To Know
Milan is the second-most populous city in Italy and the capital of Lombardy. Milan has the third largest economy among EU cities (after London and Paris) and the largest among European non-capital cities. Milan is the main industrial, commercial, and financial centre of Italy and a leading global city. Its business district hosts the Borsa Italiana (Italy’s main stock exchange) and the headquarters of the largest national banks and companies. The city is a major world fashion and design capital. Milan’s museums, theaters and landmarks (including the Milan Cathedral, the fifth-largest cathedral in the world, and Santa Maria delle Grazie, decorated with Leonardo da Vinci paintings such as The Last Supper, a UNESCO World Heritage Site) attract over 8 million visitors annually. The city hosts numerous cultural institutions and universities, with 185,000 enrolled students in 2011, i.e. 11 percent of the national total. The city is also well known for several international events and fairs, including Milan Fashion Week and the Milan Furniture Fair, the largest of its kind in the world.
Area: 181.8 km²
Population: 1.3 million
EUROThe EURO is the official currency in Milan and is available in seven different bills and eight separate coins. The bills are available in 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, and 500 denominations. The coins are available in 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, and 50 cents.
Being the capital city of Italy, Rome hosts all the principal institutions of the nation, like the Presidency of the Republic, the government (and its single Minister), the Parliament, the main judicial Courts, and the diplomatic representatives of all the countries for the states of Italy and the Vatican City (curiously, Rome also hosts, in the Italian part of its territory, the Embassy of Italy for the Vatican City, a unique case of an Embassy within the boundaries of its own country). Many international institutions are located in Rome, notably cultural and scientific ones – such as the American Institute, the British School, the French Academy, the Scandinavian Institutes, the German Archaeological Institute – for the honour of scholarship in the Eternal City, and Specialized Agencies of the United Nations, such as the FAO. Rome, also hosts major international and worldwide political and cultural organisations, such as the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), World Food Program (WFP), the NATO Defense College and ICCROM, the International Center for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property. Rome is currently an beta+ world city, falling down from its alpha- status in 2008, along with Berlin, Bucharest, Athens, Lisbon, Montreal and Budapest.
Italian is the official language.
Health and security
- Healthcare is available to all citizens and residents through a mixed public/private system.
- Law enforcement in Italy is provided by multiple police forces, five of which are national, Italian agencies.
Milan has a humid subtropical climate, the climate is similar to much of Northern Italy’s inland plains, with hot, sultry summers and cold, foggy winters. However, the mean number of days with precipitation per year is one of the lowest in Europe. The Alps and Apennines mountains form a natural barrier that protects the city from the major circulations coming from northern Europe and the sea.
While Rome is Italy’s political capital, Milan is the country’s economic and financial heart. With a 2010 GDP estimated at €132.5 billion, the province of Milan generates approximately 9% of the national GDP; while the economy of the Lombardy region generates approximately 20% of the Italy’s GDP (or an estimated €325 billion in 2010, roughly the size of Belgium).
Milan is a major national and international centre of the performing arts, most notably opera. Milan hosts La Scala opera house, considered one of the most prestigious opera houses in the world.