Welcome to Trieste, Italy!
Italy is home to many popular tourist destinations, but it is also well-known for its hidden gems and incredible cities that not many tourists know about. One of these places is called Trieste, a lovely city nestled in the far northeast corner of Italy close to the border with Slovenia. Quite different from other parts of the country, Trieste is a part of the Friuli Venezia region and has been influenced by various civilizations and cultures. It’s also easily accessible on the Venice to Trieste train. If you are looking for an off-the-grid destination with a unique vibe, a visit to Trieste should definitely be included on your list of places to visit in Italy.
Tourists usually flock to popular Italian cities like Venice, Rome, and Florence, but a worldwide local wants to explore all parts of the country and see the sites from a different point of view. This insider’s guide takes you to some of the best attractions in Trieste and offers useful tips from the local residents.
Start by Enjoying the Trieste Weather on the Grand Canal
After you get settled into one of the Trieste hotels, you’ll be ready for your first adventure. Situated in the heart of the Teresiano neighborhood, Trieste’s Grand Canal was built by Maria Theresa in the 18th century. Often compared to the great canals of Venice, it is a great place to walk around and enjoy spectacular sunset views. Here, you will also see a life-sized statue of James Joyce, as well as dozens of small cafes and bars where you can unwind with a cup of Italian coffee. Venture outside the city gates and visit the beautiful 19th century Miramare Castle. Expect to find extensive garden and woodland that you can explore for free, while the entrance to the actual castle will set you back around 10€ ($11).
Worldwide Local Tip: An excursion to Muggia is an ideal day trip from Trieste for visitors who are looking for a local experience. This small town can be reached in under 15 minutes by car, but you can also hop on a boat at the Trieste harbor to get there.
A visit to Piazza della Borsa is a great way to spend an afternoon and take in local life. This square used to serve as the economic center during the 10th century and you can still see the chamber of commerce building from those times. Nowadays, the square is packed with dozens of restaurants and shops and boasts a lovely statue of Neptune. Trieste has a rich naval history and to learn more about it, check out the fabulous Museo Del Mare which features many interesting displays about the naval operations in the city. Expect to see plenty of equipment from historical ships, as well as some rather unique model vessels.
Worldwide Local Tip: Like other Italian cities, Trieste is proud of its aperitivo culture. The procedure is simple. Order Aperol Spritz or some other drink in the afternoon and you will be served food, ranging from snacks to a full meat and cheese platter. Caffé Rossini’s, a great Trieste restaurant, is one of the best places in the city to experience the aperitivo culture and enjoy views of the Grand Canal.
Modern Art in Trieste
Interested in modern Italian art? The Museo Civico Revoltella in Trieste houses more than one thousand modern art paintings, as well as hundreds of sculptures, drawings, and prints. There are about 40 rooms to discover and the highlights of the collection include works by 20th-century Italian artists such as Mario Sironi, Giorgio Morandi, Lucio Fontana, and many others.
Spend a Day in Sistiana
To escape the crowds, visit the charming town of Sistiana which is located just a 20-minute drive from Trieste. This lovely coastal resort is home to a couple of magnificent beaches and there are many bars and restaurants where you can indulge in local cuisine.
Worldwide Local Tip: Coffee is king in Trieste and everyone drinks it. When ordering, remember that macchiato is a capo and espresso is nero. The best places to try coffee in Trieste are Antico Caffè San Marco and Caffè Tommaseo (which is actually the oldest coffee house in the city). Travelers who are craving something sweet can try Trieste’s mouth-watering desserts like pinza, presnitz, and putizza.
Enjoy Your Stay!
It may not be as popular as Venice, Trieste has its own special charm that many travelers find irresistible. Explore the picturesque streets of Trieste as a worldwide local and get to know some of its best-kept secrets.