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Aquileia, Trieste

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No other place, no other monument, no museum, and nothing is the whole region, is as important as Aquileia from a historical and archeological point of view. The city was founded in 181 BCE and was a real point of reference for the Roman Empire. Its river gate assumed exceptional strategic importance. Recent excavation work has uncovered some extraordinarily valuable finds: a forum, a basilica, some wonderful mosaics, frescoes, crypts, walls, markets, and thousands of small finds, including coins, pottery, statues, and even a small boat, all of which are displayed in the Museo Archeologico Nazionale. There are lots of monuments, buildings, and churches to visit. It is a place which you really must see if you are staying in Trieste or nearby (Aquilea is located near Grado and is around an hour by car from the region's capital).