A weekend to discover Matera and Alberobello (and beyond)

For many years now my father had expressed the desire to visit Matera and this year the right opportunity finally presents itself. June 2 falls straight on Monday and mom Ryan Air gives us the gift of a direct Genoa-Bari flight that takes us to the Apulian capital in just over an hour.

At Bari airport we immediately head to the counter of the Thrifty, the company with which we booked the car via the internet (67 euros for 3 days). Thanks to the efficiency of the lady, less than an hour after our arrival we are on board the Wolkswagen Up and, finally, back on the road even if this time it is home-made.

Il B&B Parco del Lamione  (30 euros per person per night, breakfast included) is located in a beautiful area 8 km from the town of Gioia del Colle, an area characterized by green meadows dotted with poppies, by luxuriant olive and cherry trees full of fruit. I chose it mainly for its location, because it is exactly halfway between the two cities I intend to visit: Matera and Alberobello.

We arrive, therefore, to Matera just before dusk and as soon as you look out from the panoramic point you understand why both Carlo Levi and Giovanni Pascoli were fascinated by it. THE Sassi of Matera they constitute the historical center of the city and have been inhabited since the Paleolithic. The narrow streets intertwine with each other, while the houses sink into the bowels of the earth. a visit that I recommend is the one to Cave house (2 euros), left as it is today by those who lived there until 1950 and in which, during the visit, a recorded voice tells how life went on inside.

We stop here in the evening to eat: we understand that the inhabitants are used to tourism because the restaurants are much more expensive than in the surrounding area.

The next morning we wake up calmly and after a breakfast with homemade bread and jams, we move to Alberobello. The sight of the trulli it immediately has a strong impact, the whole complex is very nice, but if I have to be honest, the too many shops that sell souvenirs inside the trulli give it a fake air, almost like a smurf village. However, a visit is a must, certainly worth it. The view of the trulli from the terrace on the other side of the main road is beautiful.

For lunch we decide to follow the advice of the very kind owner of the b & b and we go to locorotondo, a town famous for its panoramic walk from which you have a beautiful view of the Itria Valley. The lunch was great and at a really cheap price.

Se locorotondo it was a really nice surprise then I have to admit that Polignano a Mare, which we visited immediately after, is one of those places whose images remain in your mind for a long time. I didn't know exactly what to expect, but when I emerged from an alley in the historic center and found myself on a terrace overlooking the sea, in front of the show that presented itself to me, I forgot what I was talking about and I remained silent to observe the steep cliffs.

I have also read that in the surroundings it is possible to make beautiful boat trips and go to visit some very suggestive caves.

The following morning, a hasty visit to the town of Trani, take a short tour of the harbor to see the great cathedral on the sea. This too turned out to be a surprise: in truth I think that, if I could, I would decide to get married here one day. Unfortunately our flight leaves at 15pm, we have just enough time to get to the airport and eat a quick sandwich, before the Boeing 737 takes us home.

Travel conclusions

Puglia certainly amazes. If I were to find something to remove from the itinerary, perhaps I would remove it Trani, not because it is not worth the trouble, on the contrary precisely because it deserves much more than a passing visit and therefore I would include it in an itinerary that allows me more time to see it. Going back, however, I would try to carve out at least a few hours for a visit to Castellana caves and still half a day to enjoy the underground itinerary of Matera.


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