Puglia is full of interesting things to see and do and the people are warm and passionate - the most basic attempt to speak Italian will virtually guarantee you a warm and friendly reception.
Not surprisingly the Puglia region is favoured by many Italian holiday-makers for the range of delights it offers, from the culinary wonders served up in its many restaurants to a richness of art and history which bears testimony to the regions rich mosaic of cultural influences.
On a more modern footing, Puglia is a wonderful place to shop - from the chic to the antique the region caters for every taste. The markets of Alberobello and Grumo Apulla are of particular interest for those looking to bring back a souvenir of Puglia or an original Pugliese artefact. And the markets of Gallipoli and Copertino are rich in interesting antiques.
For discerning shoppers of fashion look no further than the chic boutiques of Bari, Lecce and Foggia.
Wine, olive oil and food products are also a prominent part of the Puglia economy.
During the summer months some towns hold their own outdoor antique markets. They stay open until at least midnight and are also a social occasion, combining wonderfully with that most Italian of pastimes, the passeggiata.
PLACES TO VISIT
(see also Local Festivals, A Rich Cultural Heritage and Simply Delicious)
There is a tremendous amount to see and do in Puglia - from indoor and outdoor theatre and concerts, to boat trips, walking, mountain biking, horseriding, or simply strolling through the many historic piazzas, soaking up the atmosphere.
The area is rich in Roman and Greek archaeological sites and there is an abundance of fine art and architecture to absorb.
Puglia boasts many historic theatres, art galleries and museums. Historic towns are dotted across the region and numerous castles and fortresses also house their own museums.
And indoor and outdoor concerts, ranging from classical, jazz, to rock and pop are held in most towns.
For nightlife the student-filled city of Lecce is very lively and Bari too has a wide choice of clubs, bars and restaurants.
Smaller towns such as Martina Franca come to life in the summer months when outdoor festivals and events go on until late at night.
Here are some of the more important galleries, museums and musical events:
Galleries and Museums
Bari - Pinacoteca Provinciale
Barletta - Museo Civico e Pinacoteca
Brindisi - Museo Archeologico Provinciale
Conversano - Ciclo della Gerusalemme Liberata
Fasano - Museo Nazionale di Egnazia
Foggia - Museo Civico e Pinacoteca Comunale
Gioia del Colle - Museo Archeologico Nazionale
Gravina in Puglia - Pinacoteca Civica
Lecce - Museo Archeologico Provinciale
Lucera - Museo Civico "G. Fiorelli"
Manfredonia - Museo Archeologico Nazionale
Monte Sant'Angelo - Museo delle Arti e Tradizioni Popolari del Gargano
Ruvo di Puglia - Museo Archeologico Nazionale
Ostuni - Museo di Civiltΰ Preclassiche della Murgia Meridionale
Squinzano - Museo delle Arti e Tradizioni Popolari del Salento
Taranto - Museo Archeologico Nazionale
Martina Franca: Festival della Valle D'Itria mid July-mid August
Concerts and Music Festivals