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Italy ➜ Puglia

One would think that this stretch of land would be too remote to be a melting pot of cultures. But its exposed location has brought about just that. The Greeks and the Normans, even the Staufer kings have immortalised themselves here. Even today, Puglia is a miracle horn: fertile plains provide rich harvests; the rocky Adriatic coast paints wildly romantic sceneries; dreamlike sandy beaches, on the other hand, line the Ionian Sea. Between the turquoise blue of the bays, the silver green of the olive groves and the white of whitewashed walls, everything is there to delight the senses.

These contrasts are also reflected in the culture: both the ancient sites and the famous trulli bear witness to the southern art of living. These shingle-roofed round buildings are Apulia's landmark. Once the dwellings of the poor, they were quickly dismantled when the tax bailiff approached (this is how legend describes this early form of furbismo). Opposite them are ancient and baroque monuments such as the mysterious, octagonal Castel del Monte. Puglia is Italy's view of a Europe of shipping routes.

Apulian favourite dishes: mussels from Taranto stuffed with egg and cheese are considered a delicacy. The "breakfast of Lecce" is not complete without the "pasticciotto" (shell pastry filled with custard).

Castel del Monte
Lecce
Porto di Trani
Taranto
Torre Sant'Andrea, Melendugno, Otranto
Torre Sant'Andrea, Melendugno, Otranto
Trulli
 

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