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Trieste offers many places to visit and itineraries to discover the various aspects of the city, of interest to both tourists and Trieste residents.
From the architectural itineraries in the streets of the center, to those dedicated to places of worship, from the Opicina Tram to the naturalistic itineraries on the Karst, to the paths immersed in nature. In addition to the majesty and beauty of Piazza Unità d'Italia, it offers historical wealth at the San Giulio hill and wonderful sea views from the nearby hills.
In the names that this large square has had over the centuries we can read the troubled history of Trieste, a borderland that has always been disputed. Born as St. Peter's Square due to the presence of a small church, it later became Piazza Grande and, in 1918, Piazza Unità. After the end of the Second World War and the return to Italy of the" Free Territory of Trieste", it took the definitive name of Piazza Unità d'Italia.
From left to right follow one another Palazzo della Lieutenenza Austrian, seat of the Prefecture, Palazzo Stratti, with the famous Caffè degli Specchi, Palazzo Model, seat of the Town Hall, Palazzo Pitteri(the oldest in the square) the hotel in Palazzo Vanoli, and the Palace of the Region.
In the square there is the Fountain of the Four Continents built between 1751 and 1754. The figures are an allegory of the four continents known at the time: Europe, Asia, Africa and America.
In front of the square there is the Molo Audace, which takes its name from the destroyer Audace, the first Italian ship that entered the port at the end of the First World War, when Trieste was, in fact, annexed to the Kingdom of Italy. The bronze compass rose on the pier was obtained by casting the bronze obtained from an enemy ship sunk by the Italian Navy.
Borgo Teresiano takes its name from Maria Teresa, the first empress of Austria, who, in the mid-18th century, decided to build an entire district by burying the salt pans. It is located between the railway station and Piazza Unità d'Italia.
The Grand Canal was built in the center of the village, which allowed goods to be brought from the sea directly into the city. The best way to see the canal is from the Ponte Rosso, which crosses it. Framing the panorama is the largest church in Trieste, Sant'Antonio Nuovo, which overlooks the homonymous square at the end of the canal. On the other hand, the Serbian Orthodox Temple of San Spiridione and the Piazza del Ponterosso, adjacent to the Ponte Rosso and on which lies the fountain of the same name, are more secluded.
The Cathedral of San Giusto is the most important Catholic religious building in Trieste and stands on the top of the homonymous hill overlooking the city, the Colle di San Giusto. The current appearance of the Cathedral derives from the unification of the two pre-existing churches: the Church of Santa Maria and the Church dedicated to the martyr San Giusto, patron saint of the city of Trieste. The interior offers interesting traces of 5th century mosaic floors in front of the presbytery, while the apse is decorated with modern mosaics. The frescoes, representing the life of the saint, date back to the 13th century.
Near the cathedral there is the Castle of San Giusto, an ancient fortress of the fifteenth century which now houses a museum of weapons and monuments from the Roman era. Wanted by the emperors of Austria, it was built in successive stages from 1468 to 1636, reaching the current appearance of a triangular fortress equipped with bastions at the top.
On this hill there are also monuments from the Roman era of the ancient city of Tergeste, which deserves a description in a new paragraph.
The Colle di San Giusto offers other places of interest. Here, in fact, there are the remains of the ancient Roman city of Tergeste. We have evidence of this from the Ancient Columns of Trieste, in the immediate vicinity of the castle, and from the lapidary, in the basement of the Lalio Bastion of the castle.
Not far away(but in different directions) we find the Roman Theater and the Arco di Riccardo, both dating back to the 1st century BC
The Victory Lighthouse is a lighthouse built between 1923 and 1927, 68 meters high, dedicated to the fallen on the sea during the First World War. Located on the hillock of Gretta, a district north of the city center, it is visible from far away and offers a spectacular view of the sea and Trieste.
At the top of the lighthouse lantern is the winged Nike, a character from Greek mythology that symbolizes victory, while, at the base of the column, there is a statue of a sailor. Finally, a little further down is the anchor of the destroyer Audace.
The San Sabba rice mill was a rice husking plant from 1913 to 1943, when it was transformed into a concentration camp by the Nazis. More than 3,500 people were killed and around 8,000 deported to other concentration camps. This place has now become a museum of memory, the sections of which recall its terrible function.
Miramare Castle is a beautiful castle, overlooking the sea, on the tip of a promontory that embraces the Gulf of Trieste, about 8 km from the historic center. The castle dates back to the mid 19th century and is surrounded by a park. Inside the castle, now used as a museum, you can admire the rooms of Maximilian of Habsburg and his wife, the guest rooms, with original furnishings dating back to the mid-19th century, and the throne room.
For more than a hundred years, the Opicina tram has connected the center of Trieste to Opicina, on the heights of the Karst, reaching a height of 348 meters. The journey of just over 5 km offers several panoramic points between the sea and nature, which have made it a tourist attraction.
The Obelisk stop is recommended for those who want to walk along the Strada Napoleonica(or Strada Vicentina), a panoramic route of 5 km, which leads to the town of Prosecco(famous for having given its name to the famous wine). As an alternative to the tram, it is possible to travel a couple of kilometers to reach the Strada Napoleonica from the Gretta district.
The Grotta Gigante is a million-year-old karst cave, which contains the largest natural hall in the world, at a depth of approximately 80 meters. During the visit, you walk 850 meters for an hour. It is located about 1 km from Opicina and 10 km from Trieste.