A great way of spending a few hours during the summer is in one of Milan's parks. The two biggest parks in the city are Parco Sempione in the city centre, and the Giardini Pubblici in the Porta Venezia area of the city. During the hottest months of the year you'll find both parks full of people sunbathing and relaxing.
It does get very hot and humid during the day, so indoor activities during the hottest hours are a good idea. Milan has many interesting museums and exhibitions that are open all year round. The Museo del Novecento (Museum of the 20th Century, in Piazza Duomo), or the Triennale Design Museum (Viale Alemagna, 6, near Parco Sempione amd Cadorna train station), are both worth a visit.
It gets very hot during the summer in Milan and it's very important to stay hydrated. Unfortunately when you're out and about in the centre of Milan drinks can come at a bit of a steep price (I have been known to pay 5 euro for a can of orangeade in Piazza Duomo!) but you don't have to shell out. Look out for the water fountains dotted in the city, they're green and the water's good for freshing up as well as drinking. There are over 400 fountains in Milan alone. If you're in the city centre you'll find one in Piazza Duomo, at the side of the cathedral going up to Corso Vittorio Emanuele. There's also one in Piazza Sempione, and there are also a few dotted around Milan's parks.
Of course, the heat's an excellent excuse to eat some gelato. There are countless gelaterie dotted around the city, and in the centre you won't go a few hundred metres without seeing a gelateria or somewhere that serves ice cream. Some of my favourites are Grom and Rivareno, two chains but their ice cream's excellent. Grom has several stores in Milan, including one in Corso Buenos Aires near Porta Venezia, and one on Corso di Porta Ticinese just beyond the Colonne. Rivareno's stores are a bit further out from the city centre, but there is one branch on Via Paolo Sarpi, in the heart of Milan's Chinatown. If you're on or around Via Dante pop into Io voglio which has a great selection of delicious gelato; and you can't miss out on a trip to Il massimo del gelato, possibly Milan's most famous gelateria, on Via Lodovico Castelvetro, off Corso Sempione. In gelaterie you'll also find granite, slushes in various flavours. Perfect for cooling off on a hot summer's day!
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