Scarpetta’s guide to Puglia
Scarpetta’s guide to Puglia
Where is Puglia?
Puglia is located in the Southern region of Italy. Some may know it better as the ‘tip of the boot’ on the map. Puglia (pronounced poo-li-ya) is also known by the name of Apulia and has a population of around 4-million.
It has the longest coastline of any Italian mainland region, so is delightfully scenic, as you can imagine. Puglia is best known for its cute little towns and villages offering a quaint, countryside vibe. It really is truly magical!
And what makes it so special?
One of the many reasons visitors fall in love with Puglia is the authentic, Italian feel it has to offer. You’ll find plenty of vineyards, olive groves and fields of durum wheat scattered around the rustic, old towns which really give the true feeling of Italy.
Puglia has kept its traditions and you’re in for a treat if you do decide to visit. Picture Nonna’s chatting in groups, people playing cards over an alfresco glass of Italian wine and Vespas...everywhere!
Where should you visit in Puglia?
One of our favourite Italian cities lies in Puglia. Lecce, in our opinion, is one of the most underrated cities in the world. It should definitely be at the top of your bucket list if you do decide to visit.
Puglia also has plenty of beautiful towns such as Otranto, Gallipoli, Polignano a Mare and Alberobello. In Gallipoli, you can wait for fishermen to arrive and enjoy delicious prawns in the port if you’re looking to really indulge in the culture!
Puglia is home to the most eastern point of Italy and has many picturesque beaches to offer. This is a particularly special area, with a towering lighthouse, Norman Cathedral and a beautiful ‘tree of life’ mosaic.
Eating in Puglia
The cuisine in Puglia is much like you’d expect. Fairly regional and similar all-year-round. Nonetheless, delicious! Fresh seafood is caught in most towns and an abundance of homemade, authentic pasta and pizza can be enjoyed in pretty much every single restaurant.
And you know how much we love our pasta!
Some of the most popular, traditional Italian foods come from Puglia such as Orecchiette and Cerignola olives which are readily available at many of the Saturday food markets.
Today, you can wander around the streets of Bari Vecchia and see Nonna’s hand making Orecchiette on tables outside.
In recent years, Puglia has also been famed for its vibrant and fruity flavours on offer in the red wine varieties grown and sold around the region. Primitivo is the classic wine from Puglia which has truly bold and incredible flavours.
Puglia's famous olive oil
If you’re a foodie, you will probably also know that Puglia is the capital of olive oil. The region provides around 40% of the country’s olive oil, which amounts to around 300,000 tonnes every single year.
Extra virgin Puglian olive oil, the foundation of the Mediterranean diet, is used in pretty much every single recipe. This delicious delicacy is used in antipasti, first and second dishes, side dishes and even desserts.
So remember, when it's time to travel to Italy again - Puglia is a perfect place to visit. Soak up that classic Italian culture, and be sure to enjoy all the delicacies waiting for you.