Trieste is one of the most important Italian ports. It lies in the vicinity of the Slovenian border and is characterized primarily by monumental buildings from the nineteenth century. It is the northernmost city with a typical Mediterranean climate, as well as the mecca of coffee lovers.
In ancient times Trieste was an Illyrian settlement that the Romans conquered. In subsequent centuries, due to its strategic location, it changed hands. The city flourished as a Mediterranean port in the 18th and 19th centuries, when it was within the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy. After World War II, the city was divided into Yugoslav and Italian parts, and it was only fully incorporated into Italy in 1954.
The heart of the Old Town of Trieste lying on the San Giusto hill is Piazza Unità d'Italia. Around it are monumental buildings erected mainly in the nineteenth century, including the town hall and the Modello Palace. There is also a famous cafe, whose interior is lined with mirrors. Among the buildings of the Old Town you can also find earlier buildings. These include the fourteenth-century cathedral of St. Justyna and the Romanesque basilica of St. New Year's Eve. The ruins of a Roman theater have also survived. On the peninsula behind the city stands the magnificent Miramare Palace erected in the mid-nineteenth century on the order of Maximilian I of Habsburg. It is surrounded by a picturesque garden with plants imported from around the world.