It is called the heel of Italy for its unique geographical location, in the South-Eastern side of Italy, and it’s one of the most amazing areas of the Country.
Apulia is recently becoming really popular for tourists, thank to its sand beaches and cliffs, its unexplored countryside and its beautiful historical cities. It’s the perfect place to enjoy an holiday with some relax time at the seaside and good time visiting interesting sites.
Furthermore, the perfect place to enjoy really great food and to purchase some handcrafted items you won’t find elsewhere.
Let’s discover together some unique creations and products of this Italian region!
In Apulia you will find hectares of rural landscapes filled with olive trees. Extra virgin olive oil is synonymous with Italian food tradition and it comes straight from the Apulia countryside (indeed it is also called “Gold of Puglia”).
Olive oil production is still at present one of the greatest economical resources of the region: the olive trees cultivations date back to the 18th century, when Charles de Bourbon gave a tax reduction to all those large landowners who helped in cultivating olives. Since then, the olive cultivations really had a huge development and today there still around 50 million olive trees from those initial saplings and more than 20k farms operating on this.
Olive trees are also used for their wood and the Southern area of Apulia (called Salento ) is very rich in the wood craft and cabinet making.
You will find these unique conical shaped houses in Apulia and nowhere else in Italy.
Scattered in the countryside, or in some small villages (the most famous one is Alberobello), original trulli were entirely built of dry limestone rocks, without mortar. They have a circular plan and very thick walls, that help to insulate in summer from the heat and to keep inside the warmth during winter, and unique roofs in a very steepy conical shape. Depending from the trullo dimensions, you can find more of these roofs and circular rooms unified in the same building.
Back in the 16th and 17th centuries they were the homes of Apulia peasants, now some of them have been restored and have a really high value. Some locals live in trulli, but many of these unique buildings are also holiday accommodations or summer properties.
Art and Crafts
One of the most known craft products of the region are the ceramics from of Grottaglie and Laterza, in the province of Taranto, and Cutrofiano. While in the past the production was mainly based on the manufacture of everyday objects, now it’s more about high quality and artistic ceramics production.
Another typical handcraft art of this region is the papier-mache, spread mainly in the Salento area and dated back to the Sixteenth century, mainly based on the creation of sacred images for churches and religious processions. Papier-mache is also the material of the wonderful Carnival allegoric wagons of the world famous Putignano carnival.
Weaving and embroidery also have a very rooted tradition in this area of Italy, as well as the creation of objects and furniture in osier. Apulia is a very creative region filled with interesting artisan ateliers: shop online on our website for original handmade Italian items!