In a far-flung corner of Italy lies the city of Trieste. Sandwiched between Slovenia and the Adriatic Sea, Trieste is almost completely separate from the rest of Italy. Trieste offers a more subdued vacation, and nothing beats driving along the spectacular Adriatic coast. Don't rely on public transport or tour buses, book a car on Skyscanner and have the freedom to go wherever you want.
Car Rental in Friuli Venezia Giulia Airport
In the arrivals terminal at Friuli Venezia Giulia Airport, passengers can rent a vehicle from one of seven car rental companies. Rental cars are available from Avis, Europcar, Hertz, and Italian rental agencies Maggiore, Win Rent, Sicily by Car, and Locauto. To rent a car in Italy, drivers must be at least 21 years old, and non-European Union members need an international driver's licence.
For those who plan to travel to neighbouring countries like Croatia and Slovenia, check the requirements for cross-border driving with the respective rental agency. Auto Europe, for example, has special rental programs for driving into Eastern Europe. There's also the option of international one-way rental for those travelling back to Trieste by train or bus.
Driving in Trieste
The roads in Trieste are often narrow and hilly. Renting a scooter is the easiest way to get around Trieste. Free parking, especially in the town centre, is hard to find. There are several paid parking areas. Molo (Pier) IV is an enclosed paid parking area that's open 24 hours a day.
Italians are safe but aggressive drivers. The left lane of a two-lane road is for passing cars only. It's not uncommon for Trieste drivers to flash their lights at the car in front of them. They do this to signal a driver to move over to the standard lane (or curb, if it's a one-lane road) to allow them to pass. Law enforcement on the roads is strict, and tourists are not treated with leniency.
What to See in Trieste
Trieste's Austrian heritage is evident in Miramare Castle, one of Trieste's most visited sights. The Piazza Unità d'Italia is the main square in Trieste. This sea-facing square is headed by the stately municipal building and is a hub of activity. Not far from the square lie the ruins of the Roman Theatre built between the first and second centuries A.D. Concerts sometimes take place at the amphitheatre during summer.
For those travelling around by car, driving the Costiera Triestina that links Sistiana to Trieste is a must. It's one of the most scenic coastal drives in Italy. This 11-kilometre stretch of road features an impressive rock face on one side and beautiful views of the Gulf of Trieste on the other.
With its close location to Slovenia, travellers can plan a trip across the border to explore another country. The Predjamski Castle in Slovenia is a Renaissance-style castle built into the gaping mouth of a cave. It's arguably the most dramatic castle ever built and only an hour's drive from Trieste.
To escape the maddening crowds that come with popular Italian cities like Rome and Milan, Trieste is the perfect hideaway. For those who love to soak up culture, the city's diverse history makes it a melting pot of Austrian, German, Greek, and Slavic influences.