7 days in Puglia, Italy - 09/16/2023-9/22/2023

Day 1-Bari


Old town

Old town Cont.

Dinner at La Tana del Polpo

Day 2-Monopoli

and Polignano a Mare

Monopoli-Old port

Old town

Monopoli Cathedral

Purgatory Church

Polignano a Mare

Old town and the coast line

Dinner at Biancofiore

Day 3- Matera

Matera city

Matera Cathedral

Matera Cont.

Sassi Barisano & Caves

Palombaro Lugo

Dinner at Buenalleggre

Day 4-Alberobello/Ostuni
Basilica of St. Comas & Damian
lunch at Alimentari
Trullo Sovrano
Old Town
Old town cont.
Ostuni cont.
Dinner at Ceralacca
Day 5- Bari
Norman Swabian Castle
City Walk
Lunch at Bottega del Tortellino
Pane e Pomodoro beach
Cocktail & Dinner
  Day 6-Trani

Port and Cathedral of Trani

Inside the Cathedral

Lunch at Giu a Sud

old Town


Dinner at La Baresana

Day 7-Bari
Last day in Bari

Day 2-Monopoli, Italy - 09-17-2023

The old port

Today we are headed to Monopoli a costal town located in the Puglia region of Southern Italy and about 45 minutes drive from Bari. Monopoli used to be an old fishing village with several very picturesque beaches.  In comparison to the western side of Italy, Monopoli retains its Italian old town feel and is relatively untouched by tourism. You are more likely to meet other Italians on holiday here rather than English, Germans, or Europeans. Named by previous Greek settlers, the town’s name is a tribute to its Greek origins. The name Monopoli is derived from the word monos (unique, one) polis (city).

 When in Europe make sure to rent a small car for convenience.  We learned our lesson at rented a small Fiat for the 4 of us.


After parking our car we are now headed to the old port.


On our way to the old port we saw this beautiful gothic gate leading to a beautiful square so we check it out.


There are a lot of restaurants and stores in the square.


White washed buildings.


Panoramic view of the square.


The old port in the back ground.


We are now reaching the old port (Porto antico or ponte vecchio), with lots of colorful boat docking around.


The old port is arguably the most picturesque location in Monopoli.  This old port is well regarded by locals, considered the cove where the icon of the town’s protective saint arrived. It’s one of the most photographed areas of the entire port.


The old port is the true home of the “vozz” the dialect term for Gozzi, the typical local boats. They’re rowing boats about 12 ft. to almost 17 ft. long, usually painted an eye catching blue or red, with interesting names of fishermen, saints or the Madonna.


Blue boat with the old port in the background and the blue sky above.


These blue boats are called Gozzo are made with local pine wood, whereas the keel and rib frame of oak. The planking was caulked by hand by local shipwright artisans then coated with a boiling hot pitch and tar mixture. This waterproofed and protected the vessel against shipworm, barnacles etc. Since the 70s the gozzo boats have begun to be motorized. Nowadays only the older fishermen use the original boats with oars.


Panoramic view of the cove



Fishing boats in the harbor.




Beautiful day - The light house (red roof) is way in the back on the right.


The four of us are having a wonderful time!


The monopoli castle is on the right.


View of the port near the monopoli castle



View of the harbor


The promenade along the coast line.


One of the many places in Monopoli where people are sunbathing and kids are board surfing.


Lungomare is a serene promenade by the sea with the light house at the end.


 The red light house of Monopoli (Faro rosi Monopoli) standing against the beautiful blue sky and deep blue lagoon.


Castello Di Carlo V (Castle of Charles V) is a 16th century fortress built by the Emperor Charles V as part of the coastal fortification system of the  area.


 Inside the castle is a bas-relief along the castle walls. These artistic stones tell the story of a tragic event which made headlines around the world. The tragic journey of the Greek ferry boat “Heleanna” and the rescue mission by the fishermen of Monopoli. The Heleanna was originally an oil tanker converted into a ferry boat for touristic needs. On 28th August 1971, 15 miles off the coast of Monopoli the tragedy occurred.


The Heleanna had left Patras (Greece) bound for Ancona with 1174 passengers (620 was the accepted limit) of various nationalities. A fire started in the kitchens due to a gas leak. The alarm was raised an hour later, the crew were unprepared, many poorly maintained life boats failed to descend, the life jackets were insufficient, panic and disorganization ensued. The captain and his wife saved themselves in one of the lifeboats. The brave fishermen of Monopoli rushed to help after seeing the smoke and signals. The disaster resulted in 24 dead, 16 missing, 1089 survivors including 271 injured, 60 seriously. On 19th April 1972 the town of Monopoli, in recognition of their help and assistance during the tragedy of the Heleanna, was awarded the Medaglia Argento al Merito Civile (Silver Medal of Civil Merit) proposed to the President of Italy Giuseppe Saragat, conceded by the then president Giovanni Leone.The citation read “The city with the highest level of civil duty and humane solidarity offered help and assistance with a true spirit of generosity for many days to the survivors”.


Arched door of the castle wall leading to the pier.  Looks like a gate to heaven.


The pier.  We were told that last week there huge waves that washed the pier and the black thing you see are dried algae.


Pier with the castle in the back.


Seafront promenade.


The water was so clear and so beautiful


We are now leaving the old port.


We are headed to the old town. 


NEXT... The old town





Our house


Photo Gallery

 Mon  petit coin