Rich in tradition, doused in dry white wine and proud of its ancient heritage, the fertile region of Puglia ranges from the Adriatic to the Ionian, hosting sweeping farms and enthralling Baroque cityscapes within. If that sounds like your sort of Italian escape, be sure to read this guide to all things to do with Puglia holiday rentals.
Different types of Puglia villas
Puglia villas come in cylindrical form and with glistening pools. To see what we mean, read on to get an idea of some of the things you can expect from this enticing province of the south.
The traditional trullihomes of Puglia
Puglia's famed across Italy for its unique and striking trullo houses. These are centuries-old constructions that make use of local white stone and innovative conical shapes. They are curious, cute things to behold, with interiors of arched doorways and stone hearths. There are plenty that have now been converted into rentals for travellers keen on something that's authentic to the region.
Puglia holiday rentals with a pool
The heat can really crank up this far south in Italy, which means you might want to limit yourself to only those Puglia villas that have a pool, particularly if you're considering heading inland to the vineyard-dashed hills. The good news is there are loads of rental options with a private swimming spot, whether trullo, farmhouse or modern build.
Large and small Puglia villas
Because Puglia has been content to leave the limelight to the likes of Tuscany and Umbria, it's not been taken over with multi-bedroom family rentals. In fact, there's a whole range of smaller, often urban, villa choices in the region. They can cater to romantic couples looking to explore the handsome churches and piazzas of Lecce or the haunting castle keeps of Taranto.
Where to book Puglia villas by the sea
In essence, Puglia is a peninsula – the "heel in the boot of Italy”. That means that much of the region is surrounded on 3 sides by the sea, which also heralds some seriously enticing coastal retreats.
Puglia villas near the Gargano National Park
Although it also covers pine woods and islands, the Gargano National Park is certainly most famous for its alabaster-white cliffs and glinting beaches. Puglia villas stud the magnificent coast here, near towns such as Mattinata and Vieste, which come fringed with pebble coves and some jaw-dropping rock stacks that poke vertically from the Adriatic.
Taste the sea in Monopoli
Nowhere in Puglia is the raw and earthy fishing tradition as strong as in Monopoli. This boat-bobbing harbour town sits midway between the ports of Bari and Brindisi. It's got ancient marinas and some taste bud-tingling fish trattorias.
Be stunned by Gallipoli
The historical wonders of Gallipoli are almost immeasurable. A muscular Angevine-Aragonese castle gives way to a rabbit-warren of an old port area, where the Chapel of Sant'Agata and the Church of St Francis of Assisi hearken back to the 13thcentury and beyond. When it's time to swim, leave the espresso to cool and head for Spiaggia della Puritate, which fringes the city itself, below the medieval fortification walls.
Where to find traditional Puglia trulli
The trulli homes of Puglia have become a veritable icon of the region. Built in droves during the 1800s, these charming and characterful cottage-like stays offer something out of the ordinary. Many are now fully-fledged villas, touting private pools and gardens in some of the most enchanting parts of the province.
Alberobello is the heart of trullo country
If there's anywhere that sums up the architectural tradition of the Apulian trullo, it's surely Alberobello. It's the hub of the UNESCO World Heritage Site that covers the unique buildings of the region, and a most alluring town in its own right. A mind-blowing 1,000 or more of the conical homes poke out of the hillsides, like cloves on an Italian prosciutto ham.
The Itria Valley and its pastoral lands
The wide, flat and farm-blanketed Itria Valley crosses from the uplands to the lowlands of Puglia. It's home to lots of the traditional cone-shaped dwellings, many of which enjoy rural locations and plenty of land. Consider heading here if you want a trullo with a garden, space for the hammock and all that al fresco wine drinking.
A trullo near the piazza in Martina Franca
Martina Franca might be the official 2ndtown of Puglia but it certainly doesn't feel like it. On a bright summer's day, when the sun rises above the Baroque cathedral and marble flagstones of Piazza Plebiscito, there's something enchantingly fairy-tale-like about the place. Historic trullo homes fringe the outer streets by the bucket load, offering a jaunt to a unique Puglia holiday rental that's got churches and cafés and bars on the doorstep.