Up until the end of World War I, Trieste was the only port of the vast Austro-Hungarian Empire and therefore a major industrial and financial center. In the early years of the 20th century, Trieste and its surroundings also became famous by their association with some of the most important names of Italian literature, such as Italo Svevo, and English and German letters. James Joyce drew inspiration from the city's multiethnic population, and Rainer Maria Rilke was inspired by the seacoast west of the city. View more
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Embrace the Old World beauty and charm of Trieste during a picturesque, half-day sightseeing excursion through this historic city. Travel along the Riviera Barcola to the Castle of Miramare, visit the St. Giusto Cathedral and take in the views from the hilltop. Discover the heart of the old city on foot and have time for independent exploration.
Castle of Miramare
Depart the pier for the brief drive along the Riviera Barcola en route to the late-19th century Castle of Miramare, or 'Castello di Miramare'. Designed in the late 19th century by architect Carl Junker, the estate served as a former residence of the Archduke Maximilian of Habsburg and his wife Carlotta. The estate is the most famous locale on the coast of Trieste, and an integral part of the city's landscape and history.
St. Giusto Cathedral
Re-board your coach for the drive to Colle Capitolino and St. Giusto Hill. Your next stop is the magnificent St. Giusto Cathedral which has been a significant symbol of the Christian community since the 5th century, and is dedicated to the city's patron saint, Saint Justus.
Admire commanding views of the city and the old castle of Saint Giusto from this hilltop vantage point before transferring to the heart of Trieste.
Trieste Walking Tour
Next, proceed for the drive to the city centre, and a guided walking tour through the heart of Trieste. Along the way, pass by the Greek Orthodox Church of San Nicolò, Galleria del Tergesteo, Piazza Borsa, Jewish Ghetto, Teatro Verdi, Café Tommaseo and the famous and impressive Roman Theatre. Built between the 1st and 2nd centuries, the impressive theatre accommodated 6,000 spectators.
Continuing on, you will reach the Piazza Unità d'Italia, Italy's largest square overlooking the sea. Flanked by City Hall, government offices and the Lloyd Triestino Building, the square serves as both a picturesque gathering place and civic centre. Your introductory adventure concludes here and you have the option of extending your time in the city center or walking back to the pier independently.
Please note: This tour involves an extensive amount of walking, including a half-mile (0.8-kilometre) walk on flat ground from the parking area to/from the entrance of the castle. There are a total of approximately 50-60 steps to negotiate inside the castle, at the entrance to the cathedral and at the panoramic viewpoint. This tour is not suitable for guests with limited mobility and guests who utilise a wheelchair. Guests are advised to wear lightweight, comfortable clothing with closed-toe walking shoes, and bring sunscreen, a hat and sunglasses from the ship. A strict dress code is observed at churches in Trieste; ladies must cover their knees and shoulders, and gentlemen must wear trousers. Restroom facilities are available at the castle. No photography is permitted inside the castle. On Sundays, church holidays and during weddings, tour groups/guides are not allowed inside the church during services; guests may have an opportunity to visit the church independently, quietly and reverently. The tour sequence may vary.
Explore the history, architecture and landmarks of Italy during this scenic and informative sightseeing excursion to Aquileia and Grado. Aquileia was founded in 181 BC to be a base for Roman power in this part of Europe. The town, strategically located for military and trading purposes, grew to be one of the most important cities in Roman Italy. Grado, named Golden Island after the colour of its sand, was an ancient fishing village that has gradually been transformed into a modern and unique seaside resort.
Depart the pier for the scenic, approximately one-hour drive to Aquileia. Built as a fortress town by the Romans, Aquileia became famously rich and powerful, and functioned as the ancient seat of the patriarchs. Archaeological remains can be found everywhere, providing a glimpse into its glorious past. Today, Aquileia is a small agricultural town surrounded by a verdant countryside.
National Archaeological Museum
Upon arrival, proceed for a guided visit to the National Archaeological Museum, which exhibits ranging from stately statues to ordinary objects of daily life. The most distinguished of the museum's treasures are its collections of gems and amber.
Basilica of Aquileia and Wine Cellar
Your tour continues with a visit to the striking Romanesque Basilica of Aquileia. View the church's large, 11th-century campanile and admire the interior's marvellous mosaics. The mosaics serve as the floor of the 4th-century basilica, and are the largest of their kind in Europe.
Wine Cellar and Grado
Next, a visit is made to a local wine cellar for a tour and tasting of regional wines accompanied by local specialities. Afterward, re-board your coach for the ride to Grado. During a guided walking tour, see the Piazzetta dei Patriarchi, the Basilica of Sant' Eufemia and the 5th-century Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie.
After your walking tour, some free time is made available to browse the port at your leisure before commencing the approximately one-hour drive back to the pier.
Please note: This tour involves an extensive amount of walking over uneven terrain, including approximately one mile (about 1.6 kilometres) in Aquileia on concrete sidewalks and interior tile, and a few steps to negotiate inside the basilica and museum. The visit to Grado includes one mile of walking on cobblestones. This tour is not suitable for guests with limited mobility and guests who utilise a wheelchair. Guests are advised to wear lightweight, comfortable clothing with closed-toe walking shoes, and bring sunscreen, a hat and sunglasses from the ship. A strict dress code is observed at churches, ladies must cover their knees and shoulders, and gentlemen must wear trousers; shorts and tank-tops are not permitted inside. On Sundays, church holidays and during weddings, tour groups/guides are not allowed inside the church during services; guests may have an opportunity to visit the church independently, quietly and reverently. Shops are closed on Sundays and Monday morning. The tour sequence may vary.
Discover the spectacular beauty and medieval splendour of Trieste and its environs during this scenic excursion to the Duino Castle, and a tour and wine tasting in the prestigious wine cellar of Spessa Castle. Standing on a Karst rock spur falling sheer into the sea, with a breathtaking view over the whole gulf of Trieste, the castle of Duino is a charming destination. Spessa's Castle, the 13th century historical home in the heart of the Collio Goriziano in Friuli Venezia Giulia, one of the most renowned wine-producing areas in Italy, was built in the 1200s and was for centuries the home of the Friulian aristocracy.
Scenic Drive and Duino Castle
Depart the pier for the approximately 30-minute drive to the small village of Duino. Upon arrival, proceed for a visit to the Duino Castle. Perched on the last rock spur of the Carso high above the Gulf of Trieste, the Duino Castle is among the most attractive castles in Europe. The lovely castle gardens offer splendid panoramic views overlooking a small fishing village, the sea and romantic avenues dotted with period statues, objects and panoramic terraces.
Duino Castle Walking Tour
Upon arrival, take a guided tour of the beautiful Duino Castle. A 16th-century tower with a structure dating back 2,000 years dominates the Castle. Its interior, furnishings, pictures, valuables, books, and mementoes were collected over centuries, and bestow a warm, elegant atmosphere upon Duino Castle. Following your visit, re-board the bus for the ride to Spessa Castle.
Located in Gorizia, Spessa Castle dates from the year 1200 and majestically perched in the hills of Capriva del Friuli. Since the 16th century, Spessa Castle has been producing top quality wines. Upon arrival, visit the prestigious cellar, learn about the vinification and ageing processes, and taste some superb red and white wines in a scenic and charming, 18th-century atmosphere.
Following your visit, re-board your coach for the approximately one-hour drive back to the pier.
Please note: This tour involves a moderate amount of walking for approximately one mile (about 1.6 kilometres) over uneven terrain, and approximately 30 steps to negotiate at the Duino Castle. This tour is not suitable for guests with limited mobility and guests who utilise a wheelchair. Guests are advised to wear lightweight, comfortable clothing with closed-toe walking shoes, and bring sunscreen, a hat and sunglasses from the ship. The tour sequence may vary.
Explore one of the truly spectacular natural wonders of Italy during this sightseeing excursion to 'Borgo Grotto Gigante', a giant cave located along the Adriatic Coast. The floor and the ceiling are covered in stalactites, stalagmites and other speleothems of all sizes. The Grotta Gigante is also an important underground and surface scientific research centre.
Depart the pier for the scenic, approximately 35-minute drive into the Karst region en route to the remarkable Giant Cave, or 'Borgo Grotto Gigante'. Noted in the Guinness Book of Records in 1995 as the largest tourist cavern in the world, the Giant Cave is perhaps the most spectacular grotto in the region. It is comprised of a huge cave and radiating gallery, one of which was inhabited during the Prehistoric Era.
Giant Cave and Guided Tour
The Giant Cave is the most famous cave of the Triestine Karst. It lies near Sgonico, and it has been opened to the public since 1908. The cave measures approximately 919 feet (about 280 metres) in length, 213 feet (about 65 metres) wide and 351 feet (about 107 metres) high. Upon arrival, take a guided tour of the Giant Cave. A series of hard stone steps, followed by a short descending gallery, leads you to the first belvedere, where a great staircase begins.
Next, marvel at the stalactites and stalagmites in the Main Cave, and view the wide galleries leading to the main cavern. Other highlights to be seen here include the Altar Room, the high entrance and the Ruggero Column. Enjoy an aperitif and wines of the Karst Plateau.
Afterward, some free time is made available for a comfort stop.
Your tour concludes with the panoramic, approximately 70-minute drive back to the pier, with a photo stop en route.
Please note: This tour involves an extensive amount of walking, with 500 steps to negotiate to enter the cave and 480 steps to negotiate to exit the cave. This tour is not suitable for pregnant women, guests who suffer from claustrophobia, guests who suffer from dizziness, guests with heart and/or respiratory problems, guests with limited mobility, and guests who utilise a wheelchair. Since the temperature inside the Giant Cave is approximately 50 degrees Fahrenheit (about 10 degrees Celsius) guests are advised to bring warm clothing and comfortable, non-slip walking shoes to wear inside the caves.