If you are looking for a European tourist destination, consider the Friuli-Venezia Giuli region of northeastern Italy, bordering on Austria and Slovenia. For simplicity’s sake we abbreviate the region’s full name to Friuli. Depending on your interests, Friuli may be your ideal vacation spot. You can get classic Italian food and other specialties, and wash it down with fine local wine. Friuli is quite a multicultural experience with its special mixture of Italian, Austrian, and Slavic influences. This article explores Friuli except for its capital and largest city, Trieste, which is examined in a companion article.
Cividale del Friuli, population about eleven thousand, was founded by Julius Caesar. Its historic town center is dominated by the Piazza del Duomo (Cathedral Square) that houses the National Archeological Museum. Check out the nearby Sixteenth Century Palazzo dei Provveditori Veneti with its ancient subterranean series of halls carved in the rock. Of course there are lots of churches, some with relics dating back to the Eighth Century.
Gorizia, population about twenty five thousand, is quite close to the Slovenian border. In fact one of its suburbs, Nova Gorica, is in Slovenia. Gorizia’s old city is known as Borgo Castello to honor the medieval castle surrounded by Sixth Century walls. Other sights to see include the Cathedral and several historic churches. Don’t miss the palaces including Coronini Cronberg.
Udine, population just under one hundred thousand, is a relatively recent city founded only about one thousand years ago. You’ll want to see the Venetian-style Fifteenth Century Piazza della Libertà (Freedom Square). As always there are churches to see. But the city’s major attraction is its castle, situated high on a hill. Some say it was build by Attila the Hun.
What about food? Prosciutto di San Daniele ham is the pride of Fruili. It ranks just after Prosciutto di Parme as Italy’s best ham. Production is centered in the town of San Daniele that once paid its taxes in hams. San Daniele now sells over two million hams a year. They are low in cholesterol, high in protein, and rich in minerals, in particular Iron, Zinc, and Vitamin B. Suggested wines to accompany them include Tocai Friulano and Ramandolo.
Levi Reiss has authored or co-authored ten books on computers and the Internet, but to be honest, he would rather just drink fine Italian or other wine, accompanied by the right foods. He teaches classes in computers at an Ontario French-language community college. Visit his website www.travelitalytravel.com devoted to Italian travel with an accent on fine Italian wine and food. Visit his central wine website www.theworldwidewine.com with weekly reviews of $10 wine and columns devoted to various aspects of wine including wine and food, humor, trivia, organic and kosher wine and lots more.Click to access the original, longer article on this Italian tourist location.
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