Trieste, the border city
Situated in the most north-easterly location of Italy, in the region of Friuli Venezia Giulia, Trieste has been a border city for centuries, as is borne out by its elegant architecture, artistic heritage and historical landmarks, of which we can mention the neoclassical Piazza Unità d’Italia, the Romanesque Cathedral of San Giusto, and the Roman Theatre dating from the second century AD. The climate is mediterranean but in autumn-winter received the chill north-east Bora wind. Its history, influenced by the Hapsburg domination, and its geographical position, adjacent to the Balkans, make Trieste a particular city, with a distinct central-European character.
Trieste is not only about art and culture but also about food and diverse traditions. It has many historical cafès, such as the Caffè San Marco in Via Battisti, and the Caffè degli Specchi in Piazza Unità d’Italia, both magnets for meetings and literary ferment among writers and poets of the calibre of James Joyce, Italo Svevo, and Umberto Saba, as well as politicians and business people, who met – and meet – for readings and debates. It is also a lively university city, and one to enjoy by day and by night, among its trendy bistros and typical restaurants.
The perfect destination for a perfect city break.
Discovering Trieste means experiencing it at all levels, whether through its outdoor sports (swimming, walking, cycling, sport climbing, suggestive paths along the Napoleonic Road) or through more simple pleasures like exploring the city or having a picnic on the panoramic Audace wharf. And then there are the big events: the Film Festival, the Bavisela Marathon and running festival, and the uniquely spectacular Barcolana regatta. You’re spoilt for choice!
The Karst and the tradition of the osmiza
The best way to relish the culinary traditions of the Karst region is to frequent one of the many osmize, or private producers and restaurants typical of the Italy-Slovenia border area. Twice a year, the proprietors of the Karst open their doors to tourists and residents to sell the fruits of their labours: cold-cuts, local cheeses, eggs, pickles, all accompanied by good wine. The osmica (or osmiza) is part of the local history and culture, and similar farm restaurants are found also in Austria, and called Heuriger near Vienna and Buscheschank in Carinthia.
The Parenzana by bicycle
Extending from Trieste to Poreč and known as the cycle-path of health and friendship, the Parenzana winds its way along the beautiful route of the former railway line built in 1902 to connect Istria to the rest of Austro-Hungarian Empire. The Parenzana line was decommissioned after only 33 years of service, and subsequently restored to become this cycle path to symbolise the spirit of sharing among the three countries it crosses: Italy, Slovenia and Croatia. It is 123 km long, of which 13 km are in Italy, 32 km in Slovenia, and 78 km in Croatia. All sections provide an enjoyable trip amidst history, nature and the traditional aromas of the Istrian peninsular.