The “Lonely Planet” recently rated Puglia a must see and the “National Geographic” picked it as one of their top trips of last year. “The Guardian”, the “New York Times” and the “Wall Street Journal” are just a few international newspapers absolutely raving about Puglia, the undiscovered Italy for connoisseurs. So why? Salento’s silver olive groves, Pescoluse's white sand beaches, or the Poets world famous natural swimming pool and Polignano’s cliffside cave restaurant overlooking the crystal clear sea, are just a few of the award winning treasures that entice Italian tourists to the region in ever increasing numbers for holidays. “Puglia Travel Design” guarantees that Puglia has something to offer everyone 365 days a year.
Lecce, also known as the Florence of the South, is a strong contender for 2019 European Capital of Culture. Despite having three thousand years of recorded history, most of the city was reconstructed in the 1600’s leaving it with some of Italy’s most stunning examples of Baroque architecture. In the centre of Puglia, Lecce is a great travel hub with a fantastic year round programme of cultural events, nightlife, restaurants and sophisticated wine bars.
Take a stroll around the winding streets of the walled city. Soak up the atmosphere of this historic fishing village, whilst sipping an iced coffee with almond milk overlooking the picturesque dock. Then visit the Cathedral to see the intricate and exceptional “tree of Life” and other 12th century mosaics.
The Pearl of the Ionian, where eastern and western architecture merge. Local fisherman once lived in the tiny churchlittered old town connected to the rest of the city by a 17th Century limestone bridge, the view from which is dominated by the Byzantine 13th century Angioino fortress. Just across the bridge the new town is fast becoming known for its carnival, nightlife, beaches and shopping. Gallipoli is famous throughout Puglia for serving the freshest and finest seafood in Salento and there is no shortage of excellent fish restaurants.
On approaching, defensive walls and closelyknitted white houses cover the hillside on which towers the Gothic cathedral, with spectacular valley views. Known as the White City, Ostuni is irresistibly chic with obvious Greek influences. It boasts a beautifully illuminated cathedral and connecting piazza between its historic area and new town.
Climb the steps to Piazza del Popolo and take in the stunning view of narrow streets and houses with white cone shaped roofs, which to this day are still inhabited. Alberobello is finally on the international map due to its UNESCO protected sixteenth century drystone dwellings, trulli.
Martina Franca was founded by Arab refugees in the 10th century and this picturesque town, dominating the Itria Valley started to flourished in the 14th century when its inhabitants were offered tax reductions. Today it is most famous for its architecture, Bombette (local meats), winding streets and white houses dotted with red geraniums.
Explore the honeycomb of natural caves and canyons of this breathtaking UNESCO protected former troglodyte settlement, which up until just fifty years ago was one of Italy’s poorest towns. This emerging treasure, an artists’ and photographers’ paradise, is vibrant and rich in more than nine thousand years of history with winding streets, great food and the chance to step back in time.