Italy’s enchantment has shifted over the past five years. While the allure of Tuscany continues to draw significant numbers of tourists, the warm friendliness of southern Italy is gradually luring more and more to its territory.
Lecce (one of the beautiful places to see in Puglia) now attracts more tourists than Siena in Tuscany.
So, what is it about this southern trip of Puglia Italy, sometimes known as the “heel” of Italy, that intrigues tourists?
Culinary pleasures steeped in history and an abundance of fresh ingredients comprise the delectable dishes displayed on the menus of charming hamlet trattorias throughout Italy, providing visitors with a sensory journey.
Whitewashed hilltop settlements sparkle under the midday sun, and baroque architecture appears beautiful in the golden hour.
It is simple to understand why this popular European location attracts 94 million tourists annually.
While front-page photographs of Milan’s glamorous fashion events vie with images of stars sipping cappuccinos in a Rome café, other celebrities have been enjoying opulent country lifestyles with their families in the Puglia region.
Puglia, or Apulia (its less familiar Latin name), is located in the south-eastern part of Italy, a province renowned for its lush scenery, olive trees, and slower pace.
Four UNESCO World Heritage Sites, each more enthralling than the last, as well as idyllic bays, stone towns, olive trees, gorgeous countryside, and exceptional architecture, bestow Puglia its charm and elegance.
Leading magazines such as the Lonely Planet, National Geographic and The New York Times, to mention a few, have dubbed Puglia the “most beautiful province in the world,” and it’s easy to see why.
Puglia is unparalleled and a quick stroll around the sites that are currently renowned for tourism around the world is sufficient to comprehend why.
Alberobello is a charming town situated in the beautiful Itria Valley in central Puglia. The hypnotic lanes of this UNESCO World Heritage Site are dotted with characteristic stone Trulli cottages with conical roofs.
There are around 1,500 of these structures (that resemble Smurf settlements) constructed from big slabs of limestone. Today, they serve as lovely souvenir shops, eateries, and visitor accommodations, as opposed to their original use as homes for the locals. Be sure to request the famed “Pasqualino” sandwich in any grocery store, a custom dating all the way back to 1966.
One of the most popular destinations on the Adriatic coast, this 8,000year-old hamlet is located just 25 miles from Bari. Why so?
Boasting stunning views from its café terraces and the famed beach of Lama Monachile, it’s simple to see why.
Cala Porto, the beach’s other name, has been honored with the prestigious Blue Flag distinction and is the ideal location from which to watch the thrilling Red Bull Cliff Diving Competition.
Every year, large crowds assemble to see competitors do stunning dives from the cliffs, which reach a height of 92 feet above the Adriatic Sea.
The town of Locorotondo, which rises spectacularly above the lush Itria Valley, was built in a round structure, hence its name, which means ’round place’.
The region’s geography and moderate temperature generate a DOC white wine of exceptional quality made from uncommon Verdeca grapes.
Subtle and fruity in flavor, a cold glass of this straw-colored wine pairs well with regionally inspired fish or pasta meals. What could be better than spending a beautiful morning spent admiring the splendour of this hilltop?
The Tremiti Islands, a collection of 5 islands in Puglia’s archipelago that have been inhabited since the creation of stories regarding myths about ancient gods, are Puglia’s newest Blue Flag beaches.
However, these beaches weren’t that popular a few decades back due to the presence of prisons during the Fascism period.
As a result, it took a long time for the Adriatic Pearl to transform from prison during Fascism. Why did it take a long time?
Well, The Tremiti Islands’ waters are part of a protected marine reserve. Divers are well-versed in the splendour of the marine life in these waters.
Hiking shoes are essential for exploring the trails and descending to the coves below.
One of Puglia’s best winter activities is a visit to the less-renowned city of Putignano, which hosts an annual Carnival each year.
Did you know? This spell-binding festival dates back to 1394! This makes the Putignano Carnival one of the oldest festivals in Europe.
That’s not all it also holds the distinction of being one of the longest-running carnivals in the world.
Late January through Shrove Tuesday in February mark the heart of Carnival celebrations, which begin with the ‘Propaggini’ (poem reading) on 26th December.
Carnival brings Putignano to life with masked celebrations and street fairs every Thursday.
A humorous papier-mâché procession through the city’s streets on the last three Sundays of the carnival season features large, colorful floats followed by street performers and food booths.
Monopoli, Puglia’s ‘Seaside City’ and a favorite summer resort for locals, is often ignored by foreign visitors.
Monopoli is one of the top locations in Puglia to unwind and enjoy the sun on a warm summer day, thanks to its modest historic centre filled with outdoor restaurants and cafes, its port studded with conventional blue and red fishing boats, and its lengthy stretch of coastline strewn with quaint, hidden coves, lovely sandy beaches, and crystal-clear waters.
In addition to that, the seafood is amazingly fresh and mouth-watering.
Valle di Itria, Bari coast, Salento and Gargano Peninsula are the four most popular tourist destinations in Italy’s Apulia region.
The best technique for determining where to stay is to pick a base in one of these places and tour adjacent villages on day trips.
As long as you plan on day-tripping to other towns, you don’t have to worry about where you stay.
Let the availability and cost of lodging guide your decision because, in the end, your wallet will allow you to stay in the location of your choice. Puglia’s lesser-known towns are less expensive and just as attractive.
You will find some gorgeous accommodation options just by doing a simple google search or you can also browse booking.com for more information.