Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Italy
Trieste is the capital of Friuli-Venezia Giulia and is situated at the easternmost corner of Italy. Elegant and cosmopolitan, Trieste is also a border city, and from its port you can reach Croatia and Slovenia in no time.
Discover the best of Trieste with us, the must-see sights and local cuisine, and find out important info about ferries from Italy to the ports of Croatia and Slovenia. Take a look at our tips and book your tickets on Ferryhopper with no hidden fees.
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Panoramic view of the Gulf of Trieste
Trieste ferry port
Given its geographical location, Trieste represents a very important port of call. Indeed, the city acts as a bridge between western and central-southern Europe, and its port is a hub for both tourist and commercial routes.
In addition, the Free Port of Trieste is located near the city center and is only a 15-minute walk from the train station. The area thus offers various services such as bars, restaurants, cinemas, banks, supermarkets, shops, pharmacies, and parking lots.
The port is also home to Molo Audace (or Audace Pier), which extends 246 m into the sea and is among the most picturesque in Italy.
Ferries from Trieste port: schedules and tickets
These connections are seasonal and are operated almost daily by Liberty Lines hydrofoils. The crossings from Trieste to Croatia and Slovenia range from a minimum of 40 minutes to a maximum of 4 hours. Regarding ticket prices, they start from €9.
On Liberty Lines ferries from Trieste, you can also travel with your small pet and transport it for free. Motor vehicles cannot be embarked, but you can bring bicycles on board by paying a small additional fee.
Discover more information about ferry connections from Trieste below:
- Ferry Trieste - Rovinj: the ferry route from Trieste to Rovinj usually operates 5 times a week with 1-2 connections per day. Crossings can take from 1 hour 40 minutes to 2 hours 30 minutes.
- Ferry Trieste - Poreč: the ferry route to Poreč from Trieste runs 3 times a week (Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday). Trips range between 1 hour 10 minutes and 1 hour 45 minutes depending on the sailing.
- Ferry Trieste - Lošinj: ferries to Lošinj from Trieste operate 2 times a week (Monday and Friday) departing in the morning. The ferry trip takes about 4 hours.
- Ferry Trieste - Piran: the ferry route from Trieste to Piran is the shortest and most frequent. There are usually 4 connections per week with at least 2 trips per day. Crossings range from 40 minutes to 3 hours depending on the route chosen.
Important: remember that to travel by ferry from Italy to Croatia and Slovenia, you must present a valid identity card or passport.
Trieste's Free Port and Molo Audace as seen from the ferry
Vacation in Trieste
Often considered a gateway city to Croatia or Slovenia, Trieste deserves more than just a few hours' visit.
Trieste is perfect at any time of the year, is reasonably priced and is also off the beaten path. Before boarding the ferry, you should therefore give yourself at least 2-3 days in this elegant city.
Among noble palaces, castles, museums, and historic cafes, you will breathe in that unique atmosphere typical of the Karst region and fall in love with every corner of its center. The same happened to artists and writers (such as James Joyce and Stendhal), who were immediately captured by Trieste's charm.
Keep reading to discover how to get to Trieste and what to do during your trip.
How to get to Trieste
Trieste is easily accessible by car, train and bus from various locations in northern Italy and beyond.
The city is also served by the Trieste – Friuli Venezia Giulia Airport (35 km away from the center). The Venice (Marco Polo) international airport is 150 km far from Trieste.
If you are arriving from Croatia or Slovenia, you can take advantage of direct ferry connections to Trieste. Departing from the ports of Poreč, Mali Lošinj, Rovinj, and Piran you will arrive in Trieste in no time and enjoy a beautiful crossing of the gulf.
The picturesque Piazza del Ponte Rosso with the church of Sant'Antonio, in Trieste
What to do in Trieste
Trieste is full of attractions, entertainment venues and boasts a rich artistic and cultural heritage. You can explore its historic center on foot, wander through its alleys, visit its museums, and sit in the historic cafes of its squares.
In summer, the Trieste coastline comes to life with its famous beach resorts. Just a few kilometers from Trieste, you’ll also find wild beaches, beautiful villages, castles, and nature reserves that are not to be missed.
Enjoy Trieste for a few days and savor the atmosphere of this unique multicultural city!
Beaches in Trieste
Trieste is more connected to its sea than ever. For locals, having even just 1 free hour is enough to treat themselves to a rejuvenating dip and some sunshine. In the city and along the coastal road, you’ll find numerous well-equipped beach resorts, as well as free beaches and wilder spots.
Here are 6 beaches in Trieste that you should visit:
- Bagno Ausonia: located in the heart of the city center, this is one of Trieste's historic beach resorts. The area is small, but equipped with sunbeds, umbrellas and tables, making it an ideal place for children as well.
- Muggia: characterized by a coastline of over 7 km, it consists of multiple beaches with sand, pebbles and rocks. Its rocky coves are ideal for sunbathing and taking a refreshing dip. Here, you’ll even find a stretch of coast dedicated to dogs (Lido di Fido).
- Sistiana Bay: located about 20 km from Trieste, this is a truly enchanting place. The color of the sea contrasts with the beautiful cliffs and the light-colored pebbles. The entire bay is characterized by multiple small beaches, dreamy seabeds and various forms of entertainment.
- Liburnia: wild and surrounded by nature, it is relatively uncrowded and perfect if you seek some tranquility. The beach is made of pebbles and its waters are always clean. Being somewhat hidden, it can be accessed on foot via a 10-minute path. Nearby, you’ll find parking and a kiosk.
- Costa dei Barbari: bordered to the northwest by the Sistiana quarry, this is a beautiful pebble beach surrounded by typical Mediterranean vegetation. It’s a quiet and uncrowded place with no services. The beach is nude-friendly and can be reached via steep paths that descend to the sea.
- Principe: located about 25 km from Trieste, it is considered one of the most beautiful beaches on the coast. It is a stretch of gravel located below the famous Duino Castle and surrounded by nature. You can access it by sea or via a fairly challenging steep path that descends from the village.
The wonderful Spiaggia del Principe, near Trieste
Sightseeing in Trieste
Trieste's historic center and the various neighborhoods that wind through the city are full of must-see monuments and attractions. Here are some suggestions for sightseeing in Trieste by the Ferryhopper Team:
- Piazza Unità d'Italia (Unity of Italy Square), the main square of Trieste which opens on one side onto the Gulf of Trieste
- Molo Audace, for a beautiful sunset stroll
- The castle and cathedral of San Giusto, located on the city's highest hill
- The Victory Lighthouse, a cultural gem that can be visited from April to October
- The Roman theater of Trieste, at the foot of San Giusto Hill and right in the city center
- The Civic Museum of Natural History, with an immense collection of botany, zoology, mineralogy, geology, and paleontology
- The Miramare Castle, the historic residence of Duke Maximilian of Habsburg
- The Trieste synagogue, among the largest and most majestic in Europe
- The Borgo Teresiano and the scenic Ponte Rosso square
- The Revoltella Museum, a modern art gallery near the maritime station
- Parco della Rimembranza, which offers spectacular views of Trieste
- The life-size bronze statues scattered throughout the city and dedicated to literary figures (such as James Joyce or Gabriele D'Annunzio)
- The Giant Cave, a must-see 10 km from Trieste
Trieste's beautiful Piazza Unità d'Italia illuminated
Nightlife in Trieste
With a vast choice of evening entertainment options, Trieste offers something for every taste. Being a university city as well, most of the venues are frequented by young people.
Trieste's bars and restaurants are concentrated in the heart of the historic center, especially in the pedestrian area between Via Giosuè Carducci and the waterfront.
Among the favorite spots for going out are definitely Piazza Unità d'Italia, the Canal Grande, Molo Audace, and the alternative Piazza Barbacan. The university area is Viale XX Settembre, with cinemas, ice cream parlors and aperitif spots.
In the city center, you'll also find some discos, but during the summer, many beach resorts turn into clubs with live events until late at night.
Food in Trieste
Trieste's cuisine is a mix of Central European, Balkan and Mediterranean influences and traditions. Recipes are diverse, with a strong emphasis on soups, fresh fish, legumes, and meat specialties.
Don't forget to accompany your meal with a glass of Vitovska, the most famous white wine from the Karst region of Trieste!
Here are some delicacies to try in Trieste:
- la jota triestina (soup with beans, sauerkraut and bacon)
- gnocchi di pane alla triestina (Trieste-style bread dumplings)
- the panino con la porcina (they say the best is from Buffet da Pepi!)
- prosciutto cotto in crosta (baked ham wrapped in bread dough)
- sardoni in savor (sardines in a savory sauce)
- baccalà mantecato (creamed codfish)
- scampi alla busara (scampi in a tomato and wine sauce)
- gulash alla triestina (Trieste-style goulash)
- cevapcici (spiced meatballs)
- strucolo in straza (a type of strudel with raisins)
- presnitz (a circular-shaped strudel filled with raisins, cinnamon and nuts)
Useful info: Trieste's aperitif is called "rebechìn," an ancient tradition still in vogue today. Everywhere you go you’ll encounter “buffets”, dark inviting taverns where you can enjoy a quick snack prepared with local products from the Trieste tradition.
The traditional Trieste jota
Villages to visit near Trieste
If you decide to stay a few more days in Trieste, we recommend reaching some beautiful towns in the province by car or bus, such as:
- The colorful Venetian fishing port of Muggia (14 km from Trieste), considered the gateway to Istria
- The hamlet of Duino (25 km from Trieste), with its romantic castle that will transport you back in time
- Grado (50 km from Trieste), an elegant seaside town with a beautiful lagoon
Here are 4 tips for those who want to visit Trieste:
- Trieste is a fairly affordable city, so we highly recommend staying for at least a weekend to fully enjoy it.
- Every third Sunday of the month, the antique market and antique flea take place in the Largo Granatieri area. Mark it on your calendar!
- Trieste is also known as the "city of wind" due to its strong bora wind from October to March. If you decide to go there in winter, remember to dress appropriately!
- Trieste is also Italy’s capital of coffee. In fact, this is one of the Italian cities where you can enjoy the best espresso. Don't miss out on Trieste's historic coffee bars, such as Caffè Tommaseo, Caffè San Marco and Caffè degli Specchi.
A cute café in Trieste with outdoor tables
Useful information about Trieste
Trieste is a well-organized city home to around 200,000 inhabitants. Most of the services and attractions are concentrated in its historic center. Here, you will also find stores and craft workshops, especially in the Ghetto and Borgo Teresiano areas.
Many hotels are located near the train station and there are also several B&Bs in the old town that will allow you to fully experience the essence of Trieste.
If you have decided to arrive in Trieste by car, we recommend using the parking lots near the port. Many hotels also have private parking for their guests.
Fun fact: the primary language of the locals is the Triestine dialect, which is used in almost every context, such as bars, stores and even public offices.
Important phone numbers for your stay in Trieste
Here are some useful contacts for your trip to Trieste:
- Trieste Marine Terminal: +390403186444
- Carabinieri Provincial Command of Trieste: +390407606565
- Local Police: +39040366111
- Maggiore Hospital: +390403991111
- Trieste tourist office: +393472525632
- Radio Taxi Trieste: +39040307730
- European emergency number: 112
Transportation in Trieste
Trieste is a city that is easy to get around on foot. Its historic center is quite compact and the main attractions are located here.
However, Trieste's public transportation network works very well. There are several urban lines that reach the beaches and even the hilly areas.
Fun fact: the unique Trieste Opicina tramway, a historical streetcar connecting Piazza Oberdan to Opicina, had been in operation in Trieste until 2016. Unfortunately, the service is still suspended, but everyone is eagerly awaiting its return.
Narrow alley in the historic center of Trieste
Book your ferry tickets to Trieste online
On Ferryhopper, you can book your tickets from Trieste to Croatia and Slovenia quickly and easily. Take a look at our Map of Ferries and plan your next vacation in Italy and abroad!