Trieste is a major port city on the northeastern edge of Italy, east of Venice and sandwiched between the Adriatic Sea (locally called the Gulf of Trieste) and Slovenia, immediately to its east.
The Piazza dell’ Unita d’Italia is one of Europe’s largest seafront squares. Many of the City’s most important landmarks are found near the Plazza.
For 500 years during the Hapsburg Empire, Trieste was the major port for the Empire and its fourth largest city (after Vienna, Budapest and Prague). Today it remains a vibrant port and is also known as the headquarters city for Illy Coffee (founded there in 1933). The region supplies 40% of all coffee consumed in Italy!
Notwithstanding its close location to Venice, the architecture of the city (in contrast to many of the ports on the Adriatic Sea to the south) does not show the influence of Venice, but rather the Hapsburg Empire (more of a continental European look than Italian).
In contrast to the Lion of Venice (see several forthcoming posts), the lion we found on an old door near the Piazza dell’ Unita d’Italia while shopping in Trieste was distinctly NOT Venetian!