The southern region of Italy, the heel of the boot if you will, is called Puglia – Apulia – and it is officially one of the most beautiful places on earth. Here are 20 reasons why you have to go.
The National Geographic, have elected it as a Top Trip, The NYPost called it “Magical” and the Lonely Planet put it in its 2014 must see places list. What more do you need to start planning your trip to Apulia. Not convinced. Swide has already given you a few reasons to visit Puglia, but here are 20 more. So book your flights NOW!
Sleep in Trullo
One of the must do things while in Apulia is to go to Alberobello, located in the Valle d’Itria a unique UNESCO site dotted with the iconic trulli. Stay there one night and sleep in one to see what these ancient structures are all about.
Dine in a cave
When in Polignano a Mare make sure you book a romantic meal in the Grotta Palazzese, a restaurant set within a cave.
Dance the Pizzica
Watch a show or even partake in the typical Pugliese dance of the Pizzica. Let your hair down and dance about and sing with the locals.
Lecce is also known as the “Florence of the South”. When you make your way there marvel at the unique baroque architecture. Make sure to visit the Basilica di Santa Croce, with its fine examples of baroque mouldings.
Relax at a Masseria
Make sure you treat yourself to one night in one of the chicest Masserie (typical country estates in Apulia) of the peninsula, the Masseria San Domenico. If this masseria is not to your liking, there are plenty more to choose from.
Get lost in Ostuni
Get lost in the small winding roads of Ostuni, the white city.
Marvel at Mosaics in Otranto
Otranto has a lot to offer but make sure you visit its Norman Cathedral, with its unique “tree of life” mosaic. Truly outstanding.
Venture underground at the Castellana Caves
Not far from Bari you will find another of Apulia’s natural wonders, the Castellana Caves. Marvel at the depth and look down the 60 metre vertical tunnel known as La Grave.
Learn how to make Orecchiette
Orecchiette is the typical pasta shape from Apulia. Lovely with broccoli, acnovies, garlic and chilli, these traditional concave disks of pasta are made in a unique manner. Flower, water and years of experience. Try to learn while out in Apulia.
Taste a fresh Burrata
Head to burrata’s birthplace in Andria and taste the freshes, most delicious, sweet, milky cheesy heaven that is burrata.
The Arabic influences of Gallipoli
Head to Gallipoli to see its unique Arabic influenced architecture and fortification.
People watch in Otranto
The town of Otranto is a spectacular scene to behold. Sit at a café enjoying a drink on the seaside passeggiata and spot who walks past.
Party like in Ibiza
Head to one of the many beach parties which take place in summer on the Apulia Coast. The Atlantis Beach is a popular destination with DJs coming to play sets from all over the world.
You can’t go to Apulia without tasting its unique autochthonous wine: negroamaro. The full bodied red is delicious, even in summer.
The Lighthouse at Santa Maria di Leuca
Santa Maria di Leuca is a must see place. Make sure to climb to the top of its lighthouse and take in the beautiful view.
Castel del Monte
Visit the 13th Century citadel Castel del Monte in the area of Andria. It was built by Holy Roman Emperor Fredrick II.
Eat a Gelato along the lungomare of Bari or Brindisi
Italian coastal towns are known for their lungomare, streets which coast the see full of shops, cafes and points of interest. Take a stroll while enjoying a gelato on the ones of Bari, or Brindisi.
Like many regions in Italy Apulia has plenty of traditional dishes which are worth tasting, From the famous orecchiette and burrata, which merit a reason to go to Apulia on their own to the traditional taralli, friselle, focaccia and gnumiridd. The pugliese bread is a delicacy too, with its lovely full bodied oil.
Head out to sea in the Tremiti
Head away from the coast and visit the Tremiti Isalnds, part of the national park of Gargano. Unspoilt nature and crystalline waters. What more could you want? Here are other small islands off the coast of italy that deserve a trip.
Take a dip in the waters of Marina di Pescoluse
Is it the Maldives? Or is it Apulia? What matters is that Marina di Pescoluse is an absolutely stunning place and yet another reason to visit Apulia. Here are other beautiful beaches in Italy, and there’s plenty in Puglia to choose from.