Learn Italian in Trieste, Italy!

Trieste is a hidden gem. Since the 1300s it has been one of the key ports for Austria, Slovenia and Croatia as well as Italy. This gives Trieste an unusual history - the architecture is as much Austrian as Italian and the local food contains as much strudel as pasta!

At the northernmost point of the Adriatic Sea, the town of Trieste is between the Gulf of Trieste (part of the Gulf of Venice) and the Carso plateau. This cultural cross-roads means that Italian language students can learn to sail in the Gulf of Trieste, ski at Alleghe or Alta Pusteria (both within three hours’ travel) and explore the vineyards of Friuli.

Things to do in Trieste

Studying in Trieste doesn’t just improve your Italian, it offers an incredible opportunity to explore some little-known areas of Italy:

  • The Carso plateau is a beautiful, rugged landscape filled with caves and tunnels. The most famous tourist site is the Giant Cave. It’s so big that St Peter’s Basilica would fit inside it. Hiking on the Carso is a cheap and enjoyable way to spend your time, but a good map is vital to avoid falling into a tunnel!

  • The Barcolana Regatta takes place in autumn every year. It’s the biggest sailing regatta in Europe and Trieste fills with sailors and their families, just as the Gulf of Trieste fills with over 2,000 little boats. Watching from shore is easy and costs nothing.

  • Trieste has amazing architecture. The main square ‘Piazza dell'Unità d’Italia’ has had several names (local people still call it Piazza Grande). It contains several huge monuments as well as a couple of cafes that date back over a century, and many gelateria (ice-cream shops).

Tips for Language Students in Trieste

Trieste is energetic - walking, sailing and swimming are daily activities for many townspeople. Many inhabitants will take a dip in the ocean every day of the year, so if you like to swim, this is the perfect place to learn Italian. In fact, you can swim from right in the centre of Trieste - Lantern Pier has a traditional beach with a wall dividing male swimmers from female ones, so make sure you are on the right site of the wall! Topolini also has free public bathing and isn’t divided into male and female.

A popular day out begins with a bus trip from Trieste town centre to Grignano to explore the Castello di Miramare. Built on a rock pier, the castle is half over the sea, and the neo-Gothic style of the Castello is more Hapsburg than Italy because it was built for Archduke Maximilian of Austria. Maximilian travelled the world and his castle contains many rooms that reflect his travels, including a bedroom like a ship’s cabin, some drawing rooms that look oriental, and a red silk throne room. He also built a large formal garden and imported many exotic trees, making the castle a beautiful place to take a picnic.

Learn Italian in Trieste, a seaside town!

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