Puglia is a beautiful region in Italy which is home to a fantastic combination of fascinating culture, unique history and some of the most outstanding wine and food that Italy has to offer.
Puglia is Home to Over 50 Million Olive Trees
Many of Puglia’s olive trees are centuries old with over 50 million anchored there.
The olive trees are so important to Puglia that they needed to enact laws to discourage others from different parts of Italy, coming over and digging up the olive trees in order to bring them back and replant them on their own land. Eventually, harsher laws were created in order to stop this from happening, and it is now illegal to dig up any tree that is planted in Puglia soil.
Puglia Cuisine is a Fine Example of the Mediterranean Diet
Puglia is responsible for producing over 60% of the olive oil produced in Italy which is a solid staple of the Mediterranean diet. The Mediterranean diet is comprised of high fat, low glycaemic index carbohydrates and a high content of dietary fibre, antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds. Hailed as the ‘heathiest diet in the world’, this combination is what makes up Puglia’s traditional cuisine.
The sun ripens the country’s fruit and vegetables which means there is always a delicious array of home-grown food to choose from such as aubergine, tomatoes, peppers, citrus, figs and even almonds! It’s clear to see why vegetable-based dishes play such a predominant role at mealtimes.
Puglia has 500 Miles of Coast Line
Puglia, also known as Italy’s stiletto heel, is surrounded by an impressive 500 miles of coastline on two different seas, the Adriatic and the Ionian. It also proudly boasts 10 Blue Flag beaches, where a blue flag has been awarded as a certification of FEE (Foundation for Environmental Education) which indicates a specific beach or marina meets tourism standards, so the beaches in Puglia are of the cleanest, highest quality.
Puglia has A Village of Trulli in the Itria Valley
Travelling through the Valle D’ Itria, you can’t help but notice the beautiful streets lines with Trulli in the Itria Valley. Trulli are cone shaped cottages made from roughly worked limestone boulders that were collected from neighbouring fields. They are characterised by their iconic roofs which are built up of corbelled limestone slabs into a domed or conical design. These ancient buildings are unique to the area and will make you feel like you are in a real-life fairy tale.
Puglia is Father Christmas’s Original Home
The well-known legend that is Father Christmas is actually derived from Italy. And while that may not be the cold, snow filled place you had in mind, Bari in Puglia is home to both the bones and relics of St. Nicolas himself, known best as Santa Claus!
The legend of Father Christmas is unfortunately not as heart-warming as the one we tell today, but in fact encompasses the themes of theft, exploitation and trickery.
But if you are interested in the grizzly Christmas tale that isn’t often told, you can visit the tomb in which the crypt of the Basilica di San Nicola, Bari, which is currently holding Saint Nicolas’ primary relics.
Puglia Has a Strong Greek History
Puglia was originally colonised by the Mycenaean Greeks, which means there is a lot of strong Greek history in Puglia. Lecce, one of the region’s most notable cities and is also referred to as ‘Florence of the South’ as it is packed with historical gems, including a gorgeous Roman amphitheatre. There are also several castles in the area, with many of them built by the Holy Roman Empire. Because of this, the local dialects used include Barese, Foggiano and even Griko, which is much closer to Greek rather than Italian.
Here at Quality Villas, we offer luxury villas in Puglia so you can experience the rich culture and gorgeous food in stunning comfort. All villas are family friendly, so they are brilliant for getting everyone together.