Dalla Puglia Con Amore
We have just come back from a site visit to the sunny and mesmerising Monopoli, so we thought we would bring the places we've visited, to you!
We always go out for dinner on the first day of a site visit and this one will be no exception so we get to experience true Pugliese culture. Monopoli is a vibrant, bustling town where fashion, especially in the evenings, is a spectacle.
As Italians, we thought we had seen and tasted the best of the best, but La Dolce Vita in the main square pleasantly surprised us.
For the active elements of the site visit, we like to go on bike rides as it’s a great way to sightsee and immerse yourself in a country's culture. We decided to go in search of the hidden spiaggia Bandiera Blu either by walking or biking, but we chose biking as it’s decidedly more fun.
On our way to the beach, we stopped by a local artist's shop Gianni Comes. He is both a fisherman and now a painter. Gianni's studio was filled with beautifully vibrant paintings where he had managed to capture Puglia and the love that he has for his town and the sea in all its glory.
He paints on recycled materials such as jeans, boat sails, fisherman high-vis jackets and bits of wood from old boats, and uses light that shines through his paintings to switch the scene from day to night. It was truly magical to see this first-hand. Here are just some of his incredible pieces of art.
On our quest, we got to see more of Monopoli although it was a bit hard cycling through the Centro Storico (the town centre) as the town was rife with tourists! But when we got to the outskirts of the town, there were loads of beach clubs and inviting restaurants alongside the road. However, we were determined to find this hidden gem of a beach and so continued on our mission.
Upon arrival the views were breathtaking, it was blue as far as the eye could see and walls of beautiful brown rocks surrounded this beach. It seemed like a rich blue haven for those who visited…
It is common at around lunchtime after being at the beach swimming and sunbathing for a couple of hours, to put on a ‘pareo’ (swimsuit cover-up) and enjoy a delicious meal.
Hungry after our adventure, we stopped at Cala Ceresa and had the most exquisite of traditionally southern Italian meals; two types of seafood pasta, sesame seed-crusted tuna, a big plate of calamari fritti, and to top it off some pistachio ice cream on a stick! Unique but delicious.
This was a great start to a fair few busy days of searching for the right event of what Puglia has to offer, a destination that has a perfect blend of adventure, cuisine and mesmerising culture,
We will be back soon with more adventures from our Pugliese site visit!
Micaela and the Journeys Team.