Some 11km south of Aquileia, isolated among lagoons, is the ancient island-town of GRADO, through which Aquileia once traded with Syria, Cyprus, Arabia and Asia Minor. Grado enjoyed its heyday under the Austrians who developed it as a health resort due to the presence of curative sand and waters – and there’s still a spa here today (wgradoit.it). Grado’s historic centre has three early Christian buildings, grouped close together in the heart of a miniature network of old streets. It’s also one of the best places in the northern Adriatic for relaxing on the beach; the water is safe, warm as a bath and shallow – indeed, the town’s name comes from the gentle angle of its shore. The free beaches are at the eastern and western ends. Alternatively, you can take a boat trip round Grado’s lagoon to explore some of its many islands.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

Italy features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

20 picturesque Christmas destinations

20 picturesque Christmas destinations

Dreaming of a trip this Christmas? We're here to help. From glittering cities to a few snowy escapes, here are 20 classic destinations for a festive break. …

12 Dec 2017 • Rough Guides Editors camera_alt Gallery
Discovering Palermo: why you should give Sicily’s capital a chance

Discovering Palermo: why you should give Sicily’s capital a chance

A city of grit and forgotten grandeur, for too long Palermo has resigned itself to being a film set of crumbling palaces, sun-worn facades and pockmarked backst…

08 Dec 2017 • Olivia Rawes insert_drive_file Article
19 places to get utterly lost

19 places to get utterly lost

One of the great joys of travelling is stumbling across unexpected places, wandering without a single destination in mind and embracing the journey. These place…

12 Sep 2017 • Keith Drew camera_alt Gallery
View more featureschevron_right