Puglia might not have quite as many tourist attractions as Tuscany or Veneto, it shines through as one of the most quietly beautiful regions in the country. You’ll find all the rolling hills, olive groves and centuries-old vineyards that you’ll find in Tuscany, but with four times the coastline and less than half of the tourists.
One of the most traditional areas can be explored in the Itria Valley, not far from Bari. Here, you’ll find the trulli houses, a unique type of home with thatched, cone-shaped roofs and a white-brick construction. They look as though they should be populated by garden gnomes, but instead date back to 17th century and are now protected as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
With little rainfall, Puglia is a year-round holiday destination. In the summer, you'll find the weather is perfect for relaxing on the beach. The most popular time for luxury travellers to visit the region is from June to August when the temperatures are typically around 25 degrees Celsius.
In autumn and spring, it's slightly cooler with temperatures from 15-20 degrees Celsius. These are ideal months for city sightseeing. In the winter, the weather is mild and well suited for treks inland and for exploring the interior.
The cuisine in Puglia is superb at utilising simple ingredients to create exquisitely fine dishes. The region is renowned for its agricultural prowess and produces a large number of Italy's fruits, vegetables, wines and olive oils.
You'll find fresh seafood, Mediterranean cuisine, pizzas and traditional Apulian dishes like baccala alla salentina, baked salted cod covered in breadcrumbs and pecorino cheese. The focus is on locally sourced produce and seasonal specialities, from mushrooms to snails. Enjoy the region's main pasta, the 'little ear' shaped orecchiette and try the delicious local cheeses.
As with any holiday, it's a good idea to carry some identification with you and keep a photocopy of your passport on your person. British passport holders don't need a visa to enter Italy. Visit GOV.UK for more advice on passports, visas and travel.