10 reasons to visit Puglia region in Italy
Georgina Willcox | 12 May 2023
Puglia, also known as Apulia, is situated at the heel of Italy and if often overlooked by many. Unfairly so, as it’s a fantastic Italy holiday destination. It is an enchanting region with an intriguing history, remarkable cities to rival any in Italy, beautiful scenery and delicious cuisine including many unique specialities.
Let’s uncover the top reasons to visit Puglia.
Why Should You Visit Puglia, Italy?
1. Trulli of Alberobello
Alberobello, a UNESCO World Heritage site is famous for its unique conical-shaped Trulli constructions stretching 15km along the Alberobello-Martina Franca road.
2. Amazing Italian food
What is Puglia, Italy famous for? It’s food, of course! This region has produced many unique Italian foods, such as orecchiette pasta, burrata cheese and the Italian version of paella - tiella. Stuzzichini is the word for the small snacks that are often served with an ‘aperitivo’ in Puglia. They might include plump, juicy olives, bites of local cheese, sun dried tomatoes, or Tarallini. These crispy little rings of baked dough, made with extra virgin olive oil and aromatic fennel seeds are lovely with a glass of wine, and are a feature of the ‘treats cupboard’ in every Puglian household!
3. Architecture in Lecce
Puglia is also known as the ‘Florence of the South’. This is due to its Roman ruins and beautiful baroque architecture, characterised by the white and gold colour of the famous Lecce stone.
4. Beautiful coastlines
It has the longest coastline on mainland Italy, so you’re guaranteed to find a stunning beach with crystal clear waters on Puglia’s Adriatic and Ionian Coasts.
5. It produces a lot of olive oil for Italy
With over 50 million olive trees, it’s an easy answer to the question, “What is Puglia known for?” It makes up to 60% of the olive oil produced in Italy! If you’re looking to experience olive oil tasting in Italy, we recommend visiting Martina Franca, which is considered to be the best in the country. Its olive oil is hand harvested and cold pressed within hours of being picked, helping to preserve its delicious flavour.
Bari, the capital of Apulia region, is more than a transport hub. You will find many architectural and historical gems like the 11th Century church, Basilica di San Nicola. This is where the bones of Saint Nicholas, the inspiration for Father Christmas, used to lay before being stolen by Bari sailors from Myra. The basilica of solid and powerful construction was the only building to survive the otherwise wholesale destruction of Bari by the Normans in 1152.
On our Puglia holidays, we’ll usually be based in the town of Ostuni, the “white city” due to its whitewashed buildings. Surrounding the old town are defensive walls built in the middle ages and it offers incredible views of the town, the surrounding countryside and the Adriatic sea.
8. Fantastic weather in Puglia
Lying between the Adriatic Sea and the Ionian Sea, Puglia enjoys a Mediterranean climate. The summers are hot and dry while spring and autumn enjoy fresh, warm breezes and cooler nights.
The European Capital of Culture in 2019, Matera is best known for its ancient cave dwellings, the Sassi di Matera, which have been inhabited since the Palaeolithic period! The city also has many museums and art galleries, and is renowned for its contemporary art and culture scene.
10. Puglia wine
Puglia makes more wine than any other region in Italy. Need we say more? The fertile soil, hot sun and sea breezes create an ideal climate for wine production. Reds made with the aromatic Negroamaro and Primitivo grapes are the perfect accompaniment to the rustic ‘Cucina povera’ style of cooking. Saluti!
Take a trip to this underrated part of Italy and experience a guided holiday to Puglia with Travel Department.
You Might also like
- Georgina Willcox
- 20 October 2020
Are you looking for the perfect location to start a love affair with Italy? The Novel Traveller, Michelle Jackson, enjoys some gems with Travel Department on a guided tour of Lake Garda, Verona and Ve ...
- Georgina Willcox
- 20 October 2020
The stunning turquoise waters of Lake Como are as dazzling as the stars who flock there to escape the limelight. What better way to enjoy the mountains that sweep down to this lake than in the comfort ...