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Trieste as an Italian city is not frequented by the regular traveler. But it should be. The mountains and the mighty Adriatic makes Trieste very unique and there is an unmistakable charm since it is a port town. Since many many years the city is famed to have attracted a lot of  writers and thinkers.


One of them was the notable Irish writer James Joyce.



In Trieste, when I found myself standing next to Joyce’s calm and smiling statue, I decided to follow his footsteps. Joyce lived in Trieste for more than a decade from 1904 till 1915 and it was his city, a place he loved and greatly admired. Trieste stole his soul and it is evident when you walk around the city. Several alleys, B&Bs and hotels, museums and coffee houses have dedicated themselves to Joyce and his time in the city. It is a wonderful feeling being in the centre of it. Literary Italy is fascinating…..


Joyce often went to old fashioned coffee houses in the city such as Caffè San Marco, Caffè degli Specchi and Caffè  Pirona. If you visit these places even now and ask about how Joyce had his coffee, you will be offered a Joyce special coffee and told about the history.

Apart from these Caffès, Joyce also wandered a lot around the other parts of city such as the well known Theatre Verdi and the church of San Nicolo. He, along with his writer friends Umberto Saba and Italo Svevo, were part of the city’s literary drama and culture.

It was not unusual for me doing a literary tour of the city with the ghosts of the literary past. I travel in search of literary references wherever I go. Trieste happened to make it doubly special.


How to Reach:
Trieste is well connected by all major towns of Italy. I took a train from Florence’s train station and reached Trieste Centrale in about 5 hours. Trieste is right at the far eastern corner of Italy so it is closer from Venice. It also makes a great base to explore Slovenia and Austria.
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