From Trieste to Venice

Off the Beaten Path in Northeast Italy, Slovenia, and Austria


The dreamy Adriatic port of Trieste, the vine-clad hills of the Collio region, and the grandeur of the Friuli Dolomites are on this journey into an under-the-radar region of northeast Italy. Coastal trails lead us along the Gulf of Trieste, a splendid bay on the Adriatic, and in the sunny wine country of the Collio, we hike right from our castle-hotel into high vineyards. We’ll then hop over to historic Kobarid, Slovenia, to hike mountain trails past forts used by the Italians in World War I. Top-of-the-world trails bring us to the Jôf di Montasio Plateau, to crystalline waterfalls in Austria, and to a 16th century Italian pilgrimage site. Journey’s end finds us exploring hidden corners of Venice from our palazzo-hotel.

Itinerary at a Glance

Days 1-2

In Trieste, with its Hapsburg heritage, we walk along the panoramic Strada Napoleonica to the town of Prosecco and hike through olive groves along the Gemina Trail for views out to the deep-blue Adriatic.

Grand Hotel Duchi d'Aosta
Trieste, Italy
Days 1 to 2 (2 nights)
Days 3-5
Rilke Trail / Collio Wine Country / Kobarid, Slovenia

High above the Bay of Sistiana, we walk the Rilke Trail to the historic castle at Duino, where poet Rainer Maria Rilke wrote his haunting Duino Elegies, then head to the World Heritage Site of Aquileia to see marvelous Roman mosaics. In the rolling hills of the Collio, our trail leads from our 13th century castle-hotel to the high vineyards of this unique wine region. We’ll slip across the Slovenian border to Kobarid for a mountain hike with insights into the famous World War I events on the Soça Front (immortalized by Hemingway in A Farewell to Arms).

Castello di Spessa
Capriva del Friuli, Italy
Days 3 to 4 (2 nights)
Hotel Hvala
Kobarid, Slovenia
Day 5 (1 night)
Days 6-8
Friuli Dolomites / Jôf di Montasio Plateau / Lake Ossiach, Austria / Tarvisio, Italy

We’ll head back to Italy for a hike amid mountain-ringed glacial lakes on the lofty Jôf di Montasio Plateau and into Austria on a gorgeous balcony trail above Lake Ossiach. Our hotel is in the ancient town of Tarvisio, cradled in the impressive mountain triangle of Italy, Austria, and Slovenia, a region graced with hilltop castles and the cultures and cuisines of three alpine countries.

Hotel Nevada
Tarvisio, Italy
Days 6 to 8 (3 nights)
Days 9-10
Venice / Palazzo Giovanelli

From our fabulous hotel, with its own private deck on the Grand Canal, we’ll walk to the exquisite Ca’ Rezzonico, a palazzo that allows us to step into the world of 18th century Venice, with an evening cruise by private boat through charming back canals. Depart on Day 10.



Enjoy top-of-the-world hikes in the World Heritage-listed Friuli Dolomites
Hike through the high vineyards of the Collio, visit Roman Aquileia, with its 4th century mosaics
Experience WWI history on a hike from Kobarid, Slovenia, hike a balcony trail above Lake Ossiach
Explore magical Trieste and Venice, stay in historic castles and palazzos, savor regional cuisine and wines


Length: 10 days
Cost From: $6395  
Arrive: Trieste, Italy
Depart: Venice, Italy
Lodging: 4 nights charming mountain hotels, 5 nights historic properties
Meals: All meals included except 1 dinner as indicated in the Detailed Itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
Activity: Cultural Adventures, Hiking / Trekking
Trip Level:

Moderate hikes, from 1-4 hours daily, on coastal or mountain trails

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