Milan’s Best Art Galleries: A Must-See Guide for Culture Lovers

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Milan’s art galleries reflect the diversity of a city that is rich in history and culture.

The city is a treasure trove of cultural and artistic wonders, making it the perfect destination for museum lovers looking for an enriching experience.

Whether you’re a history aficionado, an art enthusiast, or simply looking for an entertaining way to spend your day, these museums provide a peek into the city’s past, present, and future.

However, with so many museums to choose from, it can be daunting to figure out which ones are worth your time.

That’s why we’ve curated a guide to help you navigate through Milan’s vast museum offerings and uncover the top art galleries that are not to be missed.

The best Art Galleries in Milan

pinacoteca di brera milan
PHOTO: @pinacotecabrera

The Pinacoteca di Brera in Milan, Italy, is one of the most well-known art museums in the world, and people come from all over the world to see it. Located in the historic Palazzo Brera, the museum is housed in a beautiful 18th century building that was originally built as a college for the Jesuits.

The museum’s collection includes a wide range of paintings from the 14th to the 20th centuries, and features works by some of the most famous artists in history, including Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and Caravaggio.

The museum’s collection covers a wide range of styles and periods, making it a great place to learn about the history of art.

The famous paitings housed in the Pinacoteca di Brera include masterpieces like “the Kiss” by Francisco Hayez and “the dead Christ and three mourners” by Mantegna

“The Kiss” by Francesco Hayez

the kiss hayez painting museum milan

“The Kiss” is a painting by the Italian artist Francesco Hayez. It depicts a couple embracing in a passionate kiss, with the man’s arms wrapped around the woman and her arms around his neck.

The painting is known for its romantic and passionate subject matter, as well as its beautiful and detailed depiction of the natural environment.

At the time it was made, people thought it was scandalous, and the painting caused a stir when it was first shown.

Even though it was controversial at first, the painting has become a well-known and beloved piece of art that still inspires and fascinates people today.

“The Dead Christ and Three Mourners” by Andrea Mantegna

"The Dead Christ and Three Mourners" by Andrea Mantegna museum milan

The painting “The Dead Christ and Three Mourners” by Andrea Mantegna is widely regarded as a masterpiece of Italian Renaissance art.

It shows the burial of Jesus Christ, with three people standing around his body.

The painting is known for its realism and its detailed depiction of the emotions of the mourners, shown in various states of grief, with some appearing to be overcome with sorrow and others appearing to be more stoic in their grief.

It was created using the technique of foreshortening, which gives the illusion of depth and distance on a two-dimensional surface. This technique was highly advanced for its time and was a hallmark of Mantegna’s style.

The Architecture of Palazzo Brera

The building, called “Palazzo Brera,”  is also notable for its grand architecture and its beautiful interior courtyards and gardens. The exterior of the Palazzo Brera features a classical Italian design with a symmetrical layout and ornate decorations.

The main entrance is marked by a grand arched doorway, and the building is adorned with intricate carvings, sculptures, and frescoes.

Napoleon as Mars the Peacemaker bronze replica museum milan
The statue of Napoleon as Mars the Peacemaker in the Brera Palace. Photo by Mikita Yo

The courtyard in particular hosts the statue of “Napoleon as Mars the Peacemaker” is a bronze statue of Napoleon Bonaparte.

The statue depicts Napoleon in the guise of Mars, the Roman god of war. It’s a copy of the original, which was created by the Italian sculptor Antonio Canova, now on display in Robert Adam’s stairwell at the Duke’s London residence, Apsley House.

The left arm holds the staff and the right arm holds a golden globe on which towers the Winged Victory.


You can book your ticket online on the official website, which allows you to enter the Pinacoteca an unlimited number of times for 3 months.

Address and getting there

Via Brera 28, 20121 Milan, Italy (Brera)

The museum is just a few minutes’ walk from the nearest subway station, Moscova or Lanza (both on the green line).


Tuesday to Sunday: 8.30am–7.15pm (last entrance at 6pm);

every third Thursday of the month: 8:30am–10:20pm. (Last admission is at 9 p.m.)

Closed every Monday, January 1st, and December 25th.

Museo del Novecento

The Museo del Novecento in Milan is an important cultural institution that is dedicated to art from the 20th century. Located in piazza Duomo, the museum is housed in the Palazzo dell’Arengario. The building, which was built during the 1930s, is an example of Italian architecture from the fascist era and a key landmark in Milan.

The museum’s collection includes a wide range of paintings, sculptures, and other works of art from the 1900s, including pieces by some of the most famous artists of the time. The Surrealismsurrealism and Abstract Expressionism.

Some of the masterpieces it hosts are “Lighthouse in Westkapelle” by Dutch artist Piet Mondrian, or “Unique Forms of Continuity in Space”, a sculpture by the Italian artist Umberto Boccioni

Unique Forms of Continuity in Space

Unique Forms of Continuity in Space museum milan

“Forme uniche della continuità nello spazio” is a bronze statue of a human figure in motion, with elongated, flowing lines and curves. The figure is depicted as if it is striding forward, with its arms outstretched and its body leaning forward.

The sculpture is an example of Futurism, a movement in art and literature that sought to capture the dynamism and energy of modern life.

The sculpture was created in 1913 and is considered one of Boccioni’s masterpieces.

Lighthouse in Westkapelle

Lighthouse in Westkapelle museum milan

Lighthouse in Westkapelle is a landscape painting that depicts a lighthouse in the town of Westkapelle in the Netherlands. The painting is characterized by its use of geometric shapes and bold, primary colors.

The lighthouse is rendered in red, blue, and yellow, and is surrounded by a blue sea and a yellow sky. The painting was created in 1917 and is an example of Mondrian’s early work, before he developed his more abstract style.

In addition to the permanent collection, the museum also hosts temporary exhibitions of contemporary art, giving visitors the opportunity to see the latest developments in the art world.

Moreover, the Museo del Novecento also offers a range of educational activities and events, such as guided tours and workshops.

The museum’s goal is to promote the understanding and appreciation of art from the 20th century and make it accessible to a wide audience.

Address and getting there del Duomo, 8, 20123 Milano MI (Duomo)

The museum is on Piazza del Duomo, right next to the famous cathedral.

The closest subway station is Duomo (on the yellow and red lines).


Tickets for the Museo del Novecento cost 5€ and can be purchased online at the official website.


Tuesday to Sunday: 10.00 am – 7.30 pm (last entrance at 6pm)

Every third Thursday of the month: 8:30 a.m.–10:20 p.m. (last admission at 9 pm)

Closed every Monday.


The Triennale Museum in Milan is a museum of design and contemporary art. Located in the heart of the city, the museum is housed in the historic Palazzo dell’Arte, which was built in the 1930s.

The museum’s collection includes a wide range of objects and artworks that reflect Milan’s history of innovation and creativity, from furniture and fashion to graphic design and architecture.

The Triennale Museum was founded in 1933 with the aim of promoting Italian design and architecture. Over the years, it has become an important cultural institution in Milan, and its collection has grown to include a wide range of objects and artworks that reflect the city’s rich history of innovation and creativity.

Address and getting there

Viale Emilio Alemagna, 6, 20121 Milano MI (Sempione)

The museum is in Sempione Park.

The closest subway station is Cadorna (on the green and red lines).


Tickets for the Triennale can be purchased at the ticket office, open Tuesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.


Tuesday to Sunday: 11.00 am – 8.00 pm

Closed every Monday.


MUDEC, the Museum of Cultures (Museo delle Culture), is a large museum that displays artifacts and artwork from different cultures around the world.

The museum’s collection includes objects from Africa, Asia, Oceania, and the Americas. The collection is diverse and includes a wide range of objects, such as sculptures, masks, textiles, and ceramics.

In addition to its permanent collection, which is free to visit, MUDEC also hosts temporary exhibitions and cultural events. These exhibitions showcase the work of contemporary artists, as well as provide a platform for cultural dialogue and exchange.

This museum is located in the Porta Genova district of Milan, in a building that was formerly a factory. The building was converted into a museum and underwent a major renovation in 2015. It now features state-of-the-art exhibition spaces, a research center, a library, and a café.

MUDEC is a unique and fascinating museum that offers a glimpse into the rich and diverse cultures of the world. Its collection, exhibitions, and events provide a rich and engaging experience for visitors of all ages.

Address and getting there

Via Tortona, 56, 20144 Milano MI

The museum is near the Navigli/Porta Genova area.

The closest subway station is Porta Genova (on the green line).


The permanent collection is free entry; tickets for the temporary exhibitions can be purchased online.


Hours for the permanent collection:

Monday 2.30pm – 7.30pm

Tuesday – Sunday 09.30 – 19.30

Thursday and Saturday 09.30 – 22.30

The temporary exhibitions have changing times, check the official website for more info.

Museo del Duomo

The Duomo Museum is located in the Royal Palace of Milan, and is dedicated to the art and history of the cathedral.

The museum’s collection includes a wide range of objects, such as sculptures, paintings, tapestries, and religious artifacts. The pieces are placed in a chronological itinerary which helps discover the construction phases of the cathedral, from its foundation in 1386 to the 20th century.

One of the highlights of the museum is the Treasury Gallery, which displays a collection of precious objects, including golden altars, reliquaries, and vestments.

Address and getting there del Duomo, 12, 20122 Milano MI

The closest metro station serving the museum is the “Duomo” stop (red and yellow lines).


It is open from 10 a.m. to 7.00 p.m every day except Wednesday.


You can buy tickets online or in a package that includes the cathedral and/or the rooftops. Read our guide to learn more about Duomo, what to see, and which of the many tickets to buy.

Fondazione Prada

prada foundation milan museums
PHOTO: Ricardo Gomez Angel

Fondazione Prada is a contemporary art foundation established in 1993 by Miuccia Prada and Patrizio Bertelli, with the goal of promoting contemporary art and culture.

The foundation is known for its exhibitions of contemporary art, in 2015, opened one of the world’s most important exhibition spaces for contemporary art.

This is housed in a converted distillery in Milan’s Largo Isarco, not far from the Porta Romana district, and is now a space that has been converted into a series of installations, galleries, and theaters.

The building has been renovated and expanded by the architect Rem Koolhaas and his firm, OMA, and now includes galleries, spaces dedicated to art and exhibitions, a restaurant with beautiful views of the city, and a cafe.

Bar Luce

bar luce prada foundation milan museums
PHOTO: José Jóvena

The cafe, called “Bar Luce,” is located in Fondazione Prada and was designed by Wes Anderson, a filmmaker known for his whimsical and colorful interior design.

Bar Luce is decorated in a 1950s-inspired Italian style, with pastel colors, vintage furniture, and retro details. The bar features a long counter, comfortable booths, and a pinball machine. In addition to serving drinks and snacks, the bar also has a small library and a photo booth.

In addition to its exhibitions and cultural programming, Fondazione Prada is also known for its collaborations with other institutions and organizations.

Address and getting there

L.go Isarco, 2, 20139 Milano MI

The nearest metro station is “Lodi,”  on the yellow line.


The Fondazione Prada’s exhibits are open every day except Tuesday, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Bar Luce is open from 08.30 a.m. to 8 p.m. every day except Tuesday. 

The restaurant is open from Wednesday to Sunday from 6 p.m. to 12 a.m.


The Prada Foundation ticket costs 15€ and can be purchased at the foundation or online 

Image by Dimitris Vetsikas

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