Towns Not To Miss In Puglia Italy
This page contains affiliate links. Please read our disclosure for more info.
Puglia, the region in the heel of Italys boot, is dotted with beautiful small towns in shades of white and gold, with unique architecture like the conical trulli of Alberobello and the extravagant baroque of Lecce.
Rich in churches and palaces, hidden piazzas and winding alleyways, markets and slow food trattorias, Puglias towns are a highlight of a visit to the region and reason to entice you away from the endless coastline.
In some towns you can even combine visits to cathedrals and castles with dips in the sea just steps from the historic centre.
In this post I share my recommendations of the best Puglia destinations divided by the different areas of the region. I also answer common questions about where to stay in Puglia and how to get around.
Taste The Exquisite Pasticciotto Leccese
This is the typical sweet treat of Lecce. You can find it in bakeries, cafés, restaurants and hotel breakfasts all across Salento but why miss the chance to try it at its very homeland? The pasticciotto leccese is a mouthwatering short-crust pastry filled with custard.
The latter is either plain or comes in a variety of flavours, such as pistachio, almond or even Nutella. The pasticciotto is almost always present at any breakfast buffet but it can also be enjoyed throughout the day. Try to eat it while its still warm and you can thank us later.
Where To Stay Near Florence Italy
- The best area to stay in Florence is the San Giovanni district. This is the area around the famous Duomo. Here youll find the most popular tourist sites, including Uffizi Gallery , Galleria dellAccademia and Palazzo Vecchio . San Giovanni is also the best place to stay in Florence for first-time visitors.
Don’t Miss: Where To Stay In Greenwich Village
Stay At An Authentic Palazzo
In a city famous for its unique architecture, it would be a great pity not to stay at one of many restored palazzi which are scattered across the Old Towns picturesque streets. One of these historical buildings, which dates back to the 1930s, houses the superb Palazzo Bignami, probably the best B& B in Lecce. Liana and Enzo, the hosts at Palazzo Bignami, are gifted with a unique sense of hospitality and they manage to make their guests feel at home from the very first moment they set foot in the B& B.
The common areas of Palazzo Bignami are among the prettiest we have seen during our travels. The reception area as well as the entire B& B are decorated in superb taste and feel incredibly cosy. We fell in love with the huge and bright kitchen/dining hall which was equipped with freshly made sweet and savoury snacks, hot and cold beverages, soft drinks and wine on a 24/7 basis. If that doesnt feel like home, I dont know what does.
We also enjoyed spending time at the splendid terrace with its spectacular views to Lecces rooftops. The terrace is a paradise of brightly coloured flowers and there are comfortable chairs as well as sunbeds available for guests.
Last but not least, the B& B boasts a homely sitting room with beautiful frescoes on its walls and ceiling which give away the most fascinating secret about the buildings past. The palazzo used to be a clinic and this very sitting room was the clinics chapel!
Where To Stay In Puglia: The Best Towns And Hotels In Southern Italy
Are you planning a vacation to the South of Italy and wondering where to stay in Puglia? Well, well, keep reading this article to discover all the best villas in Puglia along with trulli hubs and bed and breakfasts.
If you have never traveled to this region, you should know that Puglia is more similar to a lifestyle rather than a geographical area. Maybe its because of the warmth of its people, who are always ready to welcome you with a smile on their face a lots and lots of food. Maybe its because of the intensity of its colors, from the lush green of its olive trees to the blue of its Adriatic and Ionian sea.
Whatever the reason is, Puglia will conquer you with its huge diversity and stunning landscapes. And there is something I really need to tell you: I am not describing Puglia as the most beautiful region in the world just because I was born and raised there.
Not at all. I have been lucky enough to travel through all the five continents and I need to be honest: it is really hard to beat this little stretch of land.
If you are interested to know where to stay in Puglia, we recommend some of the best hotels for different budgets.
Like it? Pin it!
Recommended Reading: Where To Stay In New Orleans French Quarter
Take A Stroll At Villa Comunale
The most popular public garden in Lecce is the ideal place to sit back and relax in between long sightseeing walks. The garden was created in 1830. Nowadays it boasts a large collection of plants and trees as well as all necessary facilities for visitors to spend a day at the park without a worry in the world.
Cost Of Living In Lecce
Youll find a range of prices in Lecce, starting from around $89,899 for a decent one-bedroom in the city center and going up from there. The modern apartment blocks in the suburbs are generally lower priced per square foot. The average in the beautiful centro storico is $135 per square foot, with all the conveniences in walking distance. Go outside the center and prices go down to $92 a square foot on average. Youll find rentals are reasonable here an unfurnished one-bedroom in the centro starts at $393 per month, while furnished one-and-two-bedrooms run generally between $562 to $674.
A fully restored and nicely furnished one-bedroom apartment is for sale in the old town, with charming brick vaulted ceilings and a walled courtyard, for $110,127 See:
A large, airy apartment of 2,120 square feet with an open floorplan, fine parquet floors, and four bedrooms and two bathrooms is located in a modern building at the edge of the city center and comes with air conditioning and parking. Price: $297,793 See:
Fortunately, the overall cost of living in Puglia is low, and Lecce, aside from housing, is very reasonable. Shop in the fresh markets where the regions bounty of vegetables, fruits, and seafood can be found at great prices .
You May Like: Top Places To Stay In Sardinia
Gallipoli A Seaside Base In Puglia
Situated on the west coast of the Salento Peninsula, facing the Ionian Sea, Gallipoli makes a fine base for explorations. While much larger than the Unione dei Comuni Jonica-Salentina group of villages, it offers a wealth of infrastructure in its Old Town and New City sections.
Narrow streets, lined with graceful Baroque buildings in pale pink, yellow and white, lead to a seaside promenade and a 13th century castle, the impressive Castello di Gallipoli, constructed by the Byzantines but expanded over the course of centuries.
Today, the castle is a museum of culture and civilization and also plays host to temporary art exhibitions and photography displays. The Torre del Rivellino is a popular and atmospheric venue for film, concerts and dance performance events.
Admission to Castello di Gallipoli is 5 per person. Hours vary seasonally.
Gallipoli is even home to its very own beach.The Spiaggia della Puritate is located on a crescent of sand beneath the historic city walls of Old Town Gallipoli.
Its possible to swim in the calm waters of Spiaggia della Puritate during the summer months but you can watch the sunset year-round from the promenade above the sand.
If you love being close to the sea or are wondering where to stay in Puglia without a car, Gallipoli makes a good base as you can get around by foot, by bus and on organized tours.
Cattedrale Dellassunzione Della Virgine
Located in the Piazza del Duomo, Lecce cathedral is on par with the Basilica di Santa Croce as the most important religious buildings in the city.
Constructed in the late 17th century, this cathedral also features a Baroque design similar to the basilica and has an opulent northern façade and a beautiful bell tower.
The northern façade contains some magnificent stone statues and sculptures and faces the charming cathedral square.
In contrast to the Basilica di Santa Croce, the interior of the Cathedral is highly decorative and features a myriad of gold artwork, opulent arches and a ceiling that contains some gorgeous historical artwork.
Furthermore there is also twelve chapels within the church, each of which is dedicated to a different saint or religious figure.
You May Like: Best Side Of Island To Stay In Kauai
Where To Stay In Puglia Without A Car
Puglia is a beautiful place with a lot to offer and the best way to take it all in is by taking a road trip out of the visit. There are very many places for you to rent a car including the airport and in the city.
However, just because you do not have a car does not mean you will not have as wonderful of an experience.
All you have to do is to ensure that you base yourself in a part of Puglia with many attractions as well as access to the major public transport networks.
Below are two places that fit the bill perfectly.
Where To Stay In Vieste
Vieste is a small village located in the province of Foggia which becomes very popular during summer time, especially among locals and Italians in general.
It is famous for the beauty of its waters, and indeed it is not a coincidence if it was rewarded with a Blue Flag by Foundation for Environmental Education in several occasion.
Luxury > Hotel degli UliviThis hotel is located in Pugnochiuso, not too far from Vieste, and it features rooms equipped with TV, private bathroom with a bidet, and some even feature a garden view.
If you fancy a little break from the beach enjoy its seasonal outdoor pool, garden and even playground area for the kids. Baia di Campi beach is located about 11 kms from the hotel. Check out the latest price on Tripadvisor or Booking.com
Mid-range > Al Castello RelaisEnjoy your Puglia vacations while staying at this lovely Bed and breakfast in Vieste, which is located just 1,8 km from the harbor, 500 meters from the Castle and about 6 km from Scialmarino beach.
All rooms feature a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom with free toiletries, a hair dryer and a bidet. Some units offer a fully equipped kitchen. Breakfast is served every morning. Check out the latest price on Tripadvisor or Booking.com
Budget > Albergo san GiorgioIf you are looking for a cheap accommodation during your stay in Vieste, this simple yet comfortable hotel might just be perfect for you.
Check this guide if you have only a weekend in Puglia.
Get inspired by more articles:
Don’t Miss: Best Place To Stay In San Francisco Area
Walk By Lecces Many Gates
Lecce used to be a walled city which was accessed via a number of gates. Three of them remain today and they all mark the entrance to the historic center of the city.
PORTA NAPOLI Built in 1548 in honor of Charles V, it takes its name from the ancient road that would lead to Naples. The gate is modeled on a Roman triumphal arch but its built in early Baroque style. Close to the gate youll find Santa Maria della Porta church.
PORTA RUDIAE The oldest gate, its decorated with statues of saints the central one is Saint Oronzo, the protector of the city. The original gate had collapsed the one you see today was built in 1703 on top of the old ruins.
PORTA SAN BIAGIO On the southernmost end of the historic center, this gate was built in 1774 and measures 55 feet .
Where To Stay In Alberobello
Welcome to the land of trulli!
Listed as UNESCO world heritage site, I am sure that once you sleep in a trullo you will never go back.
This very ancient and traditional type of Puglia houses can be found only in this area of the region, so you should better spend one or two nights in a trullo in order to make your Puglia experience truly authentic! Check out the best hotels in Alberobello on Tripadvisor or Booking.com.
Luxury > Le alcove luxury hotel nei trulli
By far one of the best hotels in Puglia where to enjoy a 5 stars holiday experience featuring a mix of modern comforts with the charm of timeless and traditional local cultural heritage.
Mid-range > MagravìLocated in the countryside of stunning Alberobello, this lovely b& b is a great option if you are looking for a place where to stay in Puglia.
All rustic-style apartments are provided with free Wi-Fi and with air conditioning, a patio as well as an iPod docking station.
Budget > Dimora SumeranoA rustic accommodation offering trullo huts, a patio and BBQ equipments. Although it can be classified as a budget friendly hotel, you will be surprised to know that each trullo features a fireplace, a fully equipped kitchenette with an oven. The bathroom comes with a hairdryer and a bidet. Check out the latest price on Tripadvisor or Booking.com.
Update : Green Pass Required
Everyone over 12 years old in Italy is required to show a Green Pass to enter indoor venues like restaurants and museums and for domestic flights and train travel between regions.
This health pass shows proof of vaccination against COVID-19, recovery from the virus within the last six months, or a negative test taken within the last 48 hours.
Vaccination certificates issued in other EU countries, the US, UK, Canada, Japan, and Israel will also be accepted in lieu of the Green Pass. They can be presented in digital or paper form. You must also show your ID.
Read more about the Italy Green Pass.
I also recommend making sure that your travel insurance covers COVID-19 medical expenses. We use SafetyWing nomad insurance, which does cover it and is available worldwide.
If you also want cancellation cover and quarantine cover, Heymondo travel insurance is a great option for all nationalities.
Eat The Best Pizza In Puglia
Puglia is famous for its delicious focaccia rather than its pizza. That said, we couldnt resist having pizza for dinner quite a few times during our 2-week trip across the region. Hands down the best pizza we had in our entire trip was at Pizza & Co, a small family business in Lecce which serves heaven by the slice. Brothers Maurizio and Paolo, the masterminds behind Pizza & Co, come from Naples.
That pretty much says it all about their pizza making skills. First of all, the pizza dough is out of this world. The latter is topped with top quality ingredients, baked to perfection and always served with the brightest of Maurizios smiles. Honestly, it cant get any better than this. Keep in mind that slices are very big although our motto is Theres no such thing as too much pizza.
Recommended Reading: Where To Stay In Venice California
Wander Around Lecces Castle
The Castle of Charles V in Lecce is not as impressive as other castles within the region. However, taking a stroll around its grounds is a great way to spend a fine afternoon in Lecce. The castle is in excellent condition and it hosts various cultural events and exhibitions. There is also a papier-mâché museum on site.
Where To Stay In Bari
Being the biggest city of Puglia, Bari is home to the biggest airport of the region.
Its old center will fill your eyes with its timeless beauty. Expect old buildings and older ladies making hand made pasta in the street as well as an elegant shopping area and a very romantic seafront.
Luxury > The Nicolaus hotel
A modern and elegant hotel in Bari located in Poggiofranco, a residential district of Bari.
If you feel like enjoying some relax, you will be happy to know that the structure offers a wellness area with indoor pool, gym, sauna, a Turkish bath and hot tub.
All rooms are non-smoking, air conditioned, and have free wifi connection.
If you get hungry, you know where to go. The hotel is home to two in-house restaurants, one offering high-class cuisine and the other one serving some local dishes. Are you hungry yet? Check out the latest price on Tripadvisor or Booking.com.
A cozy and comfortable bed and breakfast in Bari located 250 meters from the train station.
All rooms are fully equipped and very colorful featuring air conditioning, a fridge and private bathrooms.
Budget > B& B al PescatoreA great solution for those looking for a budget accommodation in Bari, Puglia.
Pack and travel:
Read Also: Places To Stay In Tulum Mexico On The Beach
Visit The Town Of Gallipoli
Another beautiful coastal town that is accessible from Lecce is Gallipoli.
This town is split into two main sections the main part of the town that sits on the coast, and the small island that is accessible from a single road jutting out into the sea.
This small island is a fascinating place to walk through as it contains a myriad of charming side streets packed full with beautiful architecture.
Furthermore, there is the stunning Baroque Cathedral of St.
Agata, the Castello and the old fishing harbour which are all interesting sites in their own right.