The historic neighbourhood of Navigli is so named thanks to its network of canals, the Italian word navigli meaning canals in English. Situated south west of the historic centre, it is a charming district mostly made up of pedestrian-friendly streets that are lined with top restaurants, intimate wine bars and one-of-a-kind food shops. Navigli is a must-visit where visitors will discover a very different side to Milan.
Al Pont de Ferr
Al Pont de Ferr’s casual charm, regional ingredients and Michelin-starred food ensure it is a prime attraction in the Navigli district. As you walk into the restaurant it seems as if time has stopped; this is a simple-looking place of exposed brick walls and wooden tables. But the food has plenty of contemporary appeal, with a menu offering a mix of innovative haute cuisine and traditional dishes. Highlights include pasta dishes such as tortelli with field greens and burrata cheese.
Al Pont de Ferr, Ripa di Porta Ticinese 55, 20143 Milan, +39 02 8940 6277
Focusing on simple, high-quality ingredients, as is the Italian way, Taglio is a food hotspot in Navigli. Part café, part bar and part food shop, it is the perfect place to indulge in Milan’s finest ham and breads. The unpretentious atmosphere makes it an ideal venue for a spot of lunch or dinner and there’s an array of food to take away as edible souvenirs.
Taglio, Via Vigevano 10, 20144 Milan, +39 02 3653 4294
Navigli flea market
On the last Sunday of the month, the banks of Milan’s oldest canal, Naviglio Grande, are transformed into a great outdoor flea market. A top haunt for lovers of vintage and antique pieces, the market offers 400 stalls selling everything from furniture, paintings and books to jewellery second-hand clothes. The flea market is a great place to pick up some true treasures and unique souvenirs.
Navigli flea market, Ripa di Porta Ticinese, 20144 Milan
Named for its 28 seats, 28 Posti is a contemporary bistro offering seasonal dishes, changing its menu frequently to incorporate the very best flavours available. The interior is something of a social experiment: designed by architect Francesco Faccin, it has been fitted out by inmates from the nearby Penitentiary Institute of Bollate who used recycled timber to make the furniture and decorations. The restaurant is much applauded locally not only for its chic interior but also for its food, which offers a harmonious balance between traditional Campania cuisine and more experimental dishes.
28 Posti, Via Corsico 1, 20144 Milan, +39 02 839 2377
This intimate wine bar is the perfect place to escape the crowds of other parts of Milan. The cosy spot is popular with local residents and is renowned for its impressive cold meats and extensive wine list. Enjoy an aperitivo here and discover some truly delicious Italian wine before buying a bottle to take away as a souvenir from Milan.
Il Vinaccio, Ripa di Porta Ticinese 49, 20143 Milan, +39 02 5810 9723