Day 16 in Milan – The Last Supper, Lake Como

Day 16 – The Last Supper > Train to Como > Check-in > sight-seeing around Como > Dinner at Como

The highlight of our trip in Milan would be the visit to The Last Supper (Cenacolo Vinciano). The admission ticket usually requires booking at least 1 month in advance and it is quite difficult to get the ticket. Mr Map went to Milan when he was a student a few years ago, and tried to see if he could get a ticket by just showing up on the day, but he wasn’t lucky that day. We would both see The Last Supper for the first time and he was super excited that I could get the tickets.

Booking the ticket for The Last Supper

I reserved my ticket 1 month in advance and most dates were booked out. I suppose October is a peak season to visit Milan. (I just check the availability for July and it seems that there are more available tickets) I constantly checked the availability for the tickets even though the chance of getting it would be pretty slim. Apparently there were some tickets released at some point and I booked the last 2 tickets at the 9:30am time slot. If you couldn’t reserve the ticket online and you really want to see it, you can join the guided tour for a much higher price (we were told that the tour would cost €60 per person when the online ticket was only €23 for 2 including the English guide). Click here for the official ticket seller for The Last Supper.

We arrived about 1 hour earlier as Mr Map was hoping that we could move to an earlier slot so we could go to Como earlier. As I expected, the staff simply gave him a “no” and he was a bit rude, though I think this rudeness is just casual Italian abruptness. Mr Map was a little angry as it didn’t seem to be much of a hassle to join another group. IMG_6468 resize 2014-10-30 08.57.05 resize

We decided to have our breakfast at a nearby coffee shop, killing time before our time slot to get in. IMG_6471 resize

A couple of years ago when I went to the Lourve and saw Mona Lisa, I was slightly underwhelmed, mainly because it is so small. I remember the crowds of tourists taking photos of Mona Lisa, yet here, there is some dim light inside and you are not allowed to take photos. Yet this wall painting itself is very impressive, and even Mr Map had his mouth open the whole time in admiration, though despite restoration work it is fading.

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There is a time limit within which each group can view the painting. We were only allowed to take photo of the replica in the museum, which is in the room next door. We went back to the hotel to pick up our luggage and took the train to Como. It is 30mins away from Milano Centrale station. We managed to buy some food from Peck in between and ate in Como.

We walked to our hotel as soon as we arrived Como San Giovanni station. Based on the research I found online, our hotel is located in a very convenient location in the city Como.

Accommodation in Como

Hotel Borgo Antico is about 10 mins walk from the station and we stayed there for 1 night. I have nothing to complain about the hotel as it is convenient and good value for money. However, if I ever visit Como again, I would like to stay closer to the lake as it is around a 10-15min stroll to get from our hotel to the lake front. I found Mr & Mrs Romance’s site with detailed information about getting to the lake from Milan. Have a look if you are planning your trip to Como.

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Hotel Borgo Antico

Address: via Borgovico 47, 22100 Como, Italy

Features: Free wifi, breakfast included, close to the Como San Giovanni train station

Ranking: #1 of 33 hotels in Como from tripadvisor

Website: http://www.borgoanticohotelcomo.it

We walked around Como after check-in.

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Our first stop – Villa Olmo. It is the landmark of Como. We just walked around the garden and didn’t go inside.

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We were thinking to take the ferry for a quick view but it was late afternoon when we got there and there wouldn’t have been much to see once it gets dark, and it was actualy a little hazy. We decided to take the ferry next morning.

Detail ferry schedule & fare: 

http://www.navigazionelaghi.it/eng/index.asp

Since we didn’t have much to do in Como, we took the Funicolare Como-Brunate cable car.

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It was quite hazy when we were there and we were quite disappointed. There wasn’t much to see at the top. I think the view would be a lot nicer on a clear day.

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Back into Como city, we had a gelato to cheer ourselves up from the disappointment.

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Since I was running out of data again, we went to McDonald’s for pre-dinner snacks and free wifi. We were trying to use the free wifi to find some good restaurants nearby. It is also a common theme for us to look up the McDonald’s in each country and try the burger or snack which we don’t have in Hong Kong. We tried a Salamella burger (I think it was pork), which was highly disappointing. If anyone ever comes to Hong Kong, I still think the red bean pie, at Mcdonalds is hard to top.

Eventually we stopped at the Coin department store and went to their roof top restaurant Loft for dinner as it was too cold outside.

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I ordered the aperitivo with Spritz.

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Apparently we over-ordered. The risotto alla milanese was quite filling. The food was ok, not something special.

Loft

Address: Via Boldoni, 3 | Como Centro22100 ComoItaly (5/F of Coin)

http://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g187835-d2303866-Reviews-Loft_Como-Como_Lake_Como_Lombardy.html

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I just realize that there are quite a good number of michelin restaurants in Como when I got back to Hong Kong. It was a pity that we didn’t have a chance to try some good food there.

I have to admit that we didn’t plan our Como trip very well and didn’t really make the most of it. Lucky that we were staying there for a night and could make up for it the next day.

The best time to visit Como would be May, June & September (July & August are peak season and would be very crowded). If you are visiting during winter, you will need to double check if the places you want to go are still open in the low season. For details, go to Venere.com

What is your holiday experience in Como? Where did you stay? If you enjoy reading my blog, feel free to follow me on twitter @MinionTravel to get the latest update.

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8 thoughts on “Day 16 in Milan – The Last Supper, Lake Como

  1. Lovely to see the different things people do in the same place where we have visited. If interested I have posted a blog on the three islands of Lake Maggiore and the castle of the local Duke, and the fabulous cable car trip to overlook the lake.

    1. Your cable car trip is way better than ours! It was a pity that we went there on a hazey day. It is interesting to see the other parts of lake como from your blog. We went to Bellagio & Varenna the next day and the view was amazing. I’ll post the photos we took on my next post. Stay tune!

  2. We enjoyed Como very much during a trip this spring. Our itinerary was quite similar to yours…same hotel, and same disappointing experience with hazy afternoon views from the top of the funicular (though we went further, to the lighthouse)! I suspect the view is better in the morning based on the position of the sun.

    1. I guess Lake Como is always hazy?! I just don’t know when is a good time to go to Como. We went to Bellagio & Varenna early in the morning and it was lovely. You can find the photos taken in my latest post.

      1. Well, the day we went up the funicular was the haziest of the three days we were there. Also, I believe it would have looked better in the morning. In the afternoon you’re facing the sun, so the sunlight is going to catch any haze on its way to you.

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