This itinerary takes in Otranto, S. Cesarea Terme, Castro, Tricase and S. Maria di Leuca. Otranto is one of the many fortified cities of Salento, a region for centuries known as 'Terra d'Otranto'. The name derives from the River Idro (water) which in Latin becomes 'Hidrun-tum' as it meets the port.
The whitewashed conical shaped homes or trulli of Alberobello have become the symbol of the region of Puglia in a way the famous cypress tree road in the Orcia Valley has become the symbol of Tuscany.
So much so when we saw them for first time, they seemed like old friends. Yet, there are literally thousands of trulli in and around the Itria Valley.
Alberobello may be the iconic city, but the trulli were essentially temporary countryside accommodation.
They could be dismantled and the roof elements built elsewhere in no time at all, often to beat the local taxman in times past.
Drive through such towns as Castellana Grotte and you stumble upon them incorporated into all sorts of modern buildings as the towns expanded after the second world war.
Do not confuse Taranto in Puglia with Trapani in Sicily, or even Tarcento in Friuli Venzia Giulia which couldn't be further away.
Founded around 700 BC, as Sparta's only ever colony, it became the capital of Magna Grecia.
The name is a reference to Taras or Tiras who was the son of Neptune (Poseidon for the Greeks).
This ancient Greek port is renowned for its 2 seas. The 'Mar Grande' extends into the Gulf of Taranto and the Ionian Sea, while the 'Mar Piccolo' is a natural bay contained by the 'città vecchia' and the surrounding coast.
It is a city that suffered countless invasions. All the usual suspects got there but a special place is reserved for the Saracens who 'razed the city to a heap of rubble'.
The present 'città vecchia' is the subsequent rebuilding work undertaken by the Byzantines.
This page highlights selected special vacation offers from the accommodation of the Apulia Collection in the province of Brindisi, Puglia.
They are Masseria Torre Coccaro and Masseria Torre Maizza in Savelletri di Fasano, Hotel Sierra Levante in Selva di Fasano and Hotel Levante in Torre Canne.
LUXURY IN LOVE GIFT BOX FROM € 190 PP DINNER + NIGHT + SPA
GIVE A BEAUTIFUL PRESENT TO YOUR LOVE A LUXURY BOX WITH A VOUCHER FOR A ROMANTIC NIGHT FOR TWO in Masseria Torre Coccaro.
• in your room at your arrival scented candles a Bottle of Spumante and a delicious box of candies
• welcome cocktail personalized by our barman in the luxury lounges of the olf masseria in front of a huge fireplace
• a candlelight dinner in the restaurant gourmet
• unlimited access to our AVEDA SPA with Indoor Pool Jacuzzi Turkish Bath GYm Tisane & Juice Bar
• a vast selection of dvd to watch in your room or in our Romantic Cinema Room
• our superich buffet breakfast voted amongst the best 100 in the world
€190 per person in a double room until 30 May 2013
The Puglia cooking lessons of the Masseria Torre Coccaro and adjacent Masseria Torre Maizza are held in the dedicated school of the Coccaro.
To be precise in the converted old stables where you will learn how to prepare typical local Apulia dishes such as home made pasta, fish, meat and traditional desserts or dolci.
All the ingredients are sourced directly from within the gardens of the estate, from local farms nearby or, as is the case with fish, the old port of Monopoli.
Special attention is made to the seasonality of the produce.
The setting is truly perfect, not least the old firewood oven which dates from 1500 and is perfect for baking pizza and panzerotti.
Following your lesson, the dishes can be enjoyed under a beautiful pergola covered by an ancient vine and which overlookings the surrounding countryside.
Children are also welcome to get involved and can learn how to make mozzarella and burrata.
Masseria Torre Coccaro also recommends www.mediterraneanlife.com for a list of recipes which can be prepared.