Monday, May 25, 2015

Italy 2015: Alberobello Logistics

Alberobello is one of the cutest towns ever and I'm so glad I got to visit.
It's one of the most picturesque towns in existence.

Alberobello is a town in the Puglia region of Italy, which is in the south, just north of the heel of the boot.

GETTING THERE
The closest airports are in Bari and Brindisi. There is a train that goes from Bari Centrale to Alberobello for less than €5. Having a car in this town isn't really necessary because it's so tiny and walkable. However, there's plenty of parking and there are no ZTLs on the way so the driving is easy and smooth. By the way, if you drive into a ZTL (Zona Traffico Limitado) you will be fined a lot of money so be wary.
We flew into Bari airport and took a rental car to Alberobello for two reasons. One: we were arriving late in the evening after the trains were no longer running and two: we were heading to Polignano A Mare afterwards and it was easier and cheaper to have the car.
WHERE TO STAY
We stayed in a real trullo booked through Trulli Holiday. Trulli are from the 14th century and they're the traditional hut of the Puglia region with a signature conical roof. The roofs are finished with carved stone, which is a mark of the craftsman who built the hut.
These days, trulli are only inhabited by poorer people who can't afford a modern house, but honestly, they're so freaking charming, I would probably be chuffed to live in one. Our trullo was equipped with every modern convenience: electricity, running water, air conditioning and heating, and most importantly: wifi.
GETTING AROUND
You don't need anything more than your own two feet to get around here, as the town is quite small and easily walkable. There's v. little vehicle traffic and everyone walks.
DO, SEE, & EAT
Just walking around the two trulli neighborhoods - Aia Piccolo and Rione Monti - is the best part. Aia Piccolo is the residential area and there are several picturesque trulli with wildflower-filled meadows. Rione Monti is the commercial area and there are little shops for souvenirs and eateries.
If you're interested in the history of the area and the construction of the trulli, visit the Museo del Territorio and do a little learning.
For a taste of what it would have been like to be a rich person living in the only two-story trullo, visit the Trullo Sovrano.
There are also several beautiful churches, like the amazing Basilica Damiano.
Beyond "sight-seeing" if you can even call it that, I recommend just sitting around and people watching. Every afternoon, Piazza del Popolo gets filled up with people just sitting around, chatting with everyone about their days and just hanging out. It's great and you really get a sense of the community.
This region is known for the taralli (round breadsticks), orecchiette pasta (ear-shaped pasta) especially the kind made with rapini and anchovies, and cozze (mussels). The food is extremely affordable - you can get a delicious meal for €10 per person - and the portions are huge.
Visiting Alberobello is like walking into a fairytale. Come back for my photo diary.

xoxo.

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