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Less visited and more rural than other parts of Italy, Puglia (the heel of Italy’s boot) is a place where low hills are clad with olive groves (Puglia is Italy’s single biggest oil producer), and long, sandy beaches are lapped by clear water. Our Italy specialists can help you plan your trip to Puglia using their first-hand knowledge of the region. Whether you want to explore Alberobello’s concentration of trulli — the conical stone houses known nearly only to Puglia — Lecce’s own brand of Baroque architecture or the whitewashed hill town of Ostuni, they’re there to guide you along the way.

The quality of hotels in Puglia is high, with many properties set in masseria (old farmhouses) surrounded by olive trees, each one of which is registered and protected. Vegetables overflow the stalls in local markets, and high-quality food and drink are simply a given part of everyday life. Puglia is also a place to enjoy leisurely walks or long cycle rides across the comfortably flat terrain. And, just across the border in the region of Basilicata is Matera with its unusual cave dwellings. Our specialists have explored the main sights and the lesser-known ones, and they’ll carefully plan your trip individually to match your preferences.

The “heel” of the boot of Italy. For a long time, Puglia experienced much of the same poverty as the rest of the south. While still poorer than northern Italian regions, though, Puglia today has a good deal of industry, and its agricultural sector, especially its olive oil industry, is one of the most important in the country. Puglia has also gotten very popular lately, finally getting attention in the foreign press and travel magazines for its beautiful beaches, gorgeous countryside, excellent food, and unique towns and architecture (like its cone-shaped trulli). A favorite destination for Italians in the summer, this is hardly an “undiscovered” region… but there are definitely parts of it that remain to be discovered.

Visit Puglia if: you want to see some of Italy’s most beautiful sandy beaches; you’d like a taste of the Mediterranean lifestyle; you’ve always wanted to see (or stay in) a trullo; you want to go slightly off the beaten path (especially if you’re traveling outside of summer); you’re traveling on a budget.

Major cities of Puglia: Altamira, Andria, Bari, Barletta, Brindisi, Bisceglie, Bitonto, Cerignola, Foggia, Lecce, Manfredonia, Molfetta, San Severo, Taranto, Trani

What to eat: Salted Cod, Orchiette, Clams, Frisella, Taralli, Pizzette, Puccia, Orecchiette, Sagne ‘ncannulate, Baccalà alla Salentina, Sott’olio, Pasticciato, Zeppole, Vinello

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