Welcome to Trieste

To discover the secret of a happy life head to Trieste, the Italian port tucked inside the Slovenian border. The Triestini embrace life with a passion that is palpable and infectious, if the chatter at evening aperitivo is anything to go by. And at the merest hint of sunshine, Triestini are off to the nearby seaside, Barcola, even in November, and even though it’s a concrete strip.

Trieste, as travel writer Jan Morris once opined, ‘offers no unforgettable landmark, no universally familiar melody, no unmistakable cuisine’, yet it’s a city that enchants, its ‘prickly grace’ inspiring a cult-like roll-call of writers, exiles and misfits.
Tumbling down to the Adriatic from a wild, karstic plateau and almost entirely surrounded by Slovenia, the city is physically isolated from the rest of the Italian peninsula. From as long ago as the 1300s, Trieste has indeed faced east, later becoming a free port under Austrian rule. The city blossomed under the 18th- and 19th-century Habsburgs; Vienna’s seaside salon was also a fluid borderland where Italian, Slavic, Jewish, Germanic and even Greek culture intermingled.

Devotees come to think of its glistening belle époque cafes, dark congenial bars and buffets and even its maddening bora wind as their own; it’s also a great base for striking out into the surrounding Carso and Collio wine country.

Top Attractions

Trieste has been inhabited since the second millennium BC and was part of the Roman Republic. Once the Roman Empire had declined, Trieste became a free commune and then was subsequently part of the Hapsburg Empire and resisted many sieges and attacks by the Ottomans throughout the Middle Ages. Although the city saw decline during WW2, it underwent a huge economic revival in later years and its ports were developed extensively. Today, Trieste has a pleasing mix of historical buildings and Piazzas, stunning seaside locations and interesting Museums that make it a premier tourist destination in this region of Italy.

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