Euro Trip 2024 – Milan

The entire family took a spring break trip to Italy and Ireland. The trip was pricey and tiring but we had a fantastic time and made some memories that we’ll remember forever.   This post is just the start of our trip.

Given that this was our first real trip as a family, my main goal was for everyone to just have a good time and want to travel more. On that front, it was a huge success. We had no arguments, meltdowns or even disagreements.  We had a blast.

It was also huge for the kids. They were able to experience being in another country where they saw new cultures, new languages and people who didn’t look or talk like them.  You could tell it was eye-opening.  Hunter especially loved it. He said that if there’s one place he wants to live in the world it’s Rome.

On to some day-to-day details. I’m doing this (below) mostly so I remember exactly what we did.

Thursday (24 hours before the trip)

We were supposed to leave Thursday morning but Diane and I went out of breakfast on Wednesday and we discovered that Italy won’t let us in with Diane’s passport as it expires in 74 days.  This is news to us. After initially panicking and thinking about cancelling the entire trip, Diane hustled her face off and got to the passport office and managed to get a passport turned around in 24 hours.  We pushed our flights back one day and were off on Friday.


We’re off.  It’s a long flight but everyone’s pumped.

At SFO. Note that Hunter's jacket won't actually make its way home

We do one flight to JFK and then another red-eye flight to Milan.


We land in Milan and take the train from the airport to downtown (almost an hour) and then try our luck at taking the subway to our hotel.

We succeed and get to our hotel (the awesome Max Brown) and sleep for a few hours.

At night, we meet up with the Cedolin’s.  They are some of our best Mill Valley friends who have moved to Milan for the year. They have a kid (Massi) who is Hunter’s age and his best friend at school. Leo (the dad) grew up in Milan and knows it well but the entire family (Ali, Luca and Massi) has been there for almost 9 months now so they have lots to show us.

Leo and Ali took us to a place to eat on a rooftop right next door to the Duomo. The Duomo is famous for its contrasting styles which display the work of various art legends from different generations. It started construction in 1386 and finally ended in 1775 (400 years later) when Napoleon came in and said the French would pay for it to be completed. It’s in the heart of the city and is a local hangout but also a tourist attraction because it has a collection of 4000 statues, gargoyles, and figures.

The view was amazing and it was great to finally be in Europe and connecting with some old friends.


We woke up at noon and felt refreshed (well, except Hunter who woke up at 6am).  We then checked out of Max as the Cedolin’s took us off to explore Milan.

First stop was the center of downtown to get some pizza. It’s a bustling downtown that has thousands of people walking about. It’s a very young city with young 20-somethings all dressed up and eating and shopping everywhere.  See if you can spot Sasha below

After lunch we walked to visit the downtown castle called Sforzesco Castle. The castle is one of the more legit castles I’ve ever seen. Leo remarked that as a kid he would his friends either at the Duomo or the castle as the main places to “hang out.”  Definitely puts my local hangout (the McDonalds or Perkins) to shame.

As night approached, we caught a train from Milan to Rome. It’s a 3 hour ride where the adults were fully able to catch up on whats happened the past 8 months since we’ve seen each other.

Click here to read about our Rome experience

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