When I signed up to study abroad in Italy, I was thinking I’d be staying in Rome or Bologna. However, my group’s itinerary had Trieste as the city where we would stay for three weeks. Never having heard of Trieste, I was immediately bummed. Little did I know, Trieste would become the most beautiful, mysterious and romantic city I have ever been to.
Three weeks turned out not to be enough. I had a longing to stay in Trieste because of the enchantment and mystery the city carried within every corner.
On one Sunday that everyone had off from school, I decided to simply walk around the city. I walked around all day and was left perplexed by the countless buildings, crooked streets and gems, such as the Roman amphitheater dating back to the first century. Unlike Rome or Florence, Trieste isn’t designed for tourists, which is why I loved it.
Trieste, to me, is a place of perplexity mixed with distinctiveness. Piazza Unità d’Italia stands out as the city’s biggest square that faces the Adriatic Sea. I would sit at the edge of the pier for hours talking, eating pizza, watching the waves and feeling at peace.
However, Trieste has an entirely different side than this bustling, busy piazza. It also has hills upon hills of old buildings, narrow streets and hidden restaurants.
On many of the crooked streets and small alleyways, I noticed little handles on the wall. At first, I was confused as to why there were handlebars against many of the buildings.
Well, it turns out that during the rainy seasons, there is this powerful wind called “the bora” that is strong enough to knock you over! In every book about Trieste, “the bora” is always mentioned as if it is a symbol of the city.
One of the girls on the trip decided to move back there in the fall because she truly fell in love with the quaint city. Now, I can’t wait to visit her and travel back to the beautiful streets.
Trieste is a place of bewilderment and brilliance that will continue to be admired for centuries to come. Although currently underrated, rumor has it Trieste will soon become the new Venice of Italy. I couldn’t agree more — it is a hidden gem with an immense amount of beauty that so many people have yet to discover.
Contact Natalia Brusco at [email protected].