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Puglia, or Apulia as it is called in English, is Italy's boot heel, its south-eastern most region. It is the gateway to and from the East.
Frederick II (1194-1250), the last Emperor of the Hohenstaufen line built many castles which still grace the region (Castel del Monte), along with acres of vineyards and olive groves. These produce the great wines and olive oil of the region, which perfectly complement the super-fresh seafood and vegetables of la tavola pugliese.
If you have already toured the northern part of Italy and are looking for something equally fascinating and completely different, then this is a wonderful area to consider.
The offers excellent archeological museums, a host of cathedrals dating back to the 10th century, several deserted, Greek and Roman ruins, a necklace of lively fishing villages (Trani), a chain of medieval hilltowns (Martina Franca, Otranto, Alberobello)), and some of the very cleanest beaches in the Mediterranean.
The area also has its own subspecies of architecture, called barocco leccese (extremely ornate carvings that cover the entire surface of churches and palazzo) the best example being in the delightful little city of Lecce.
There is one attraction that you will see only in Apulia, and that is "i trulli". (whitewashed cones made of stones held together without mortar). They are visible in almost every wheat field and olive grove, where they serve as miniature barns. But they are at their most picturesque when clustered together in the hundreds, to form a town. Alberobello is a wonderful site you will never forget.