Things to Do in Bari
Feel like you’ve been dropped into a gnome village with a visit to Alberobello, one of the most unique towns in Italy and home to over 1,000 roundtrulli, fairy-tale-like whitewashed cottages topped with conical roofs. The trulli of Alberobello, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, are a top destination in Puglia’s Itria Valley and a must for photographers.
Piazza del Ferrarese is a public square in the historic part of Bari, not far from the city's waterfront. There are two large squares in Bari's Old Town, known as Barivecchia: Piazza del Ferrarese and Piazza Mercantile, which connect to one another. The former was named for a 17th-century merchant from Ferrara who once lived there.
This part of Bari is newly redeveloped, making it more enticing for visitors, and the businesses lining both squares are part of that effort. Piazza del Ferrarese is surrounded by bars, restaurants, and shops, not to mention that there is part of an ancient Roman road in the middle of the square.
The 12th-century Swabian Castle (Castello Svevo), with its fortified ramparts and vaulted halls, is one of top sights in Bari and a refreshing break from the port city’s Romanesque churches and art collections. Climb the Hohenstaufen tower and Aragon walls for sweeping views of the city and sea.
The town of Trani is a port city located on the Adriatic Sea on the coast of Puglia, the heel of Italy's boot. A settlement where modern-day Trani is dates back to at least the 9th century, but may have existed during the ancient Roman era. The city reached its height during the 11th century, and by the 12th century there was a substantial Jewish community there. The town's 13th-century synagogue still stands, and was rededicated as a synagogue in 2006.
Among the main sights in Trani are a 13th-century fortress that was once a prison and now holds a museum; the gardens of Villa Comunale; and the 12th-century Cathedral of San Nicola Pellegrino, which is dedicated to St Nicholas the Pilgrim, a Greek saint, whose remains are in the crypt. Next to the cathedral is a museum of sculptures and items excavated from inside the churches of Trani.
Gravina di Puglia is a town in inland Puglia, known mainly for some pretty historic buildings and one of Europe's oldest fairs. The town was originally founded by the Greeks, though it later became part of the Roman Empire in the 4th century BCE. The famous Via Appia runs through Gravina.
Gravina Di Puglia’s cathedral dates from the 11th century, though it was heavily damaged by fires and earthquakes in the 1400s. The ruins of a 13th-century castle can be seen on a hill near Gravina, and there are churches that date from the 11th century that are carved right out of the soft tuff rocks. Gravina's annual Saint George's Fair began in 1294, making it one of Europe's oldest fairs. The town is also known for producing white wines.
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