Trieste may not be as nationally-important as it was in the 19th century, but this northern Italian city never quite got the message — it’s still an awesome destination. It exists at an international crossroads, and its occupiers throughout the ages — plus other ethnic groups simply passing through — have lent it a cosmopolitan flair. This officially quadrilingual border town still keeps close ties to nearby Slovenia and its decidedly Eastern European flavor. That said, the Italian roots are unmistakably Roman, which you’ll see in spots like Città Vecchia (the old town), the Roman Theater and the Roman Museum. Modern Trieste demonstrates a mastery of literature and music, plus emerging science, technology and shipbuilding industries.