Gorizia is a province in the northern Italian region of Friuli Venezia Giulia. To its east, it borders the Republic of Slovenia and its southern border is bathed by the Adriatic Sea. The area is very rich in natural beauty and houses a number of natural parks and reserves. The capital city of the province, also called Gorizia, boasts numerous historical monuments, including a castle, the Cathedral, the Church of Santo Spirito, a synagogue and various artistic and cultural museums. Visiting Gorizia is quite a cultural experience as well, given the fact that a good part of the population speaks Slovenian. If cultural experiences interest you, then check out the town of Grado, where every first Sunday of July, the people transport a statue of the Madonna across a lagoon in a long, solemn procession of boats; across the lagoon, there is a small island that houses an ancient sanctuary. This expression of Grado culture serves to give thanks to the Virgin for having ended an epidemic of the Plague in 1237. Grado is also well known for its spas.