Each place to visit in Italy will give visitors a very different feeling and experience. In particular, Alberobello will take you lost in a fairy world right in the middle of everyday life. It is an ancient village in the province of Bari in Puglia region, where houses (trulli) are built from limestone with ancient beauty and peaceful scenery.
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So, is Alberobello worth visiting, how to visit Alberobello, what to do in Alberobello and how to plan a budget trip to Alberobello for the first-time perfectly? Let’s check out our Alberobello travel blog (Alberobello blog) with the fullest Alberobello travel guide (Alberobello guide) from how to get to Alberobello, best time to come, what and where to eat as well as top things to do in Alberobello to help you maximize your trip as follows!
The village of Alberobello has long been famous for its overlapping limestone houses, also known as Trulli – a unique architectural style in southern Italy. In 1996, UNESCO included this town’s Trulli architecture on the list of World Heritage Site in need of protection.
Overview of Alberobello and Puglia (#alberobello travel blog)
For those who, like us, for some reason, are driving all the way to Puglia (Apulia), the southern peninsular section of Italy. The land on the map is the heel of Italy, where the waters of the Adriatic Sea and Ionian Sea merge, named by the Romans as “Finis Terae”, the land at the end of the world.
In terms of geography, Puglia is the furthest part of Italy. The tourists also rarely go far to this place. Trains from Rome have to be transfer several times, not mention to Milan, Venice or Florence. It is far from the rest of Italy in many ways, geographically, economically, politically, in terms of lifestyle and people. It was like another part, a surplus of Italy, a main land Italy had forgotten for many years. Many Italian friends I know are from the North and half jokingly say it’s “not Italy”. But there is a place in Puglia that the Italians do not consider such a “bastard child”. As written, no Italian travel guide book will ignore the image of trulli houses whose capital is the town of Alberobello.
If you don’t know what a trullo is, it’s a round house with a pointed roof made of limestone. Strange and interesting looking, they are built using a prehistoric technique in which stones are laid on top of each other and no mortar is used. The story goes that they were built this way so that they can be easily dismantled when the tax collector comes, but the truth is that you will have to find out more…
This quaint town is located in the beautiful Valle d’Itria, north of Brindisi, an undulating part of the Puglia countryside, with verdant fields, olive trees and low rough stone walls. These quaint houses are scattered across the countryside in various states of repair or disrepair, as there are many derelict houses to be seen along with the splendidly restored ones currently being renovated and used as housing and vacation rental.
On this land, from the moment of leaving the highway, along the rough, deserted, potholes of national highways, hundreds of years old olive groves gradually appeared, with its austere tree shape, under the deep blue sky and strong wind. Contrasting everything is the pure white of a trulli house in the corner of the garden.
And the climax of the journey is the town of Alberobello, the capital of the trulli “mushroom” houses. We were like in a session in the forest looking for early autumn mushrooms, after sporadically seeing a few ones along the roadside, our group found “the right nest of wasps”. Statistically, there are probably about 1,500 trulli houses still preserved in Alberobello, built undulating closely together, along the two hillsides of the Rione Monti and Rione Aia Piccola areas. Outwardly, Alberobello is like a forest of white rock mushrooms that have just sprouted after a night of showers.
Since being recognized by UNESCO as a world cultural heritage site in 1996, the number of tourists coming to Alberobello has increased, making the city neat in every corner. In the welcoming season, countless small flower pots decorate the doorway, the path is extremely lovely.
Why are there trulli houses and its architecture? (#alberobello blog)
In the words of UNESCO , which declared Alberobello a World Heritage Site in 1996, trulli is easily recognizable for its drywall construction (without mortar), a prehistoric construction technique still in use in this area. The body of the house is made from crudely machined limestone rocks collected from neighboring fields. Characteristically, they have pyramidal, dome-shaped or conical roofs built from block-shaped limestone slabs.
Not as busy and crowded as Rome, Milan or Florence, Alberobello brings the peaceful breath of the countryside with beautiful mushroom-shaped houses like fairy tales. The town of Alberobello has been recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site and is always considered the number 1 tourist attraction in Puglia, Italy.
Legend that. The development of trulli architecture in Alberobello dates back to the late 16th century. The lords of this land of the Acquaviva family ordered their servants to build houses that could be quickly dismantled for their sake. taxed by the central court according to the number of roofs on which they manage. But perhaps the story is more of a legend, because of the way to conquer nature and make a house with stones, the Puglia people must have discovered it long before the 16th century. And until recent centuries, when the local feudalism had long since collapsed, the people of Alberobello still built their traditional round houses.
But, how did these unique houses come to be in Puglia? It’s all about taxes and money. In the 1500s, the Acquaviva family, the local rulers of the feudal period, wanted to avoid paying property taxes to the king. They ordered local farmers to build houses without mortar so that in the case of a royal inspection the structures could be quickly and easily taken down, and the tax bill would remain low. Using local limestone and some ingenious construction techniques, the locals created trulli, many of which are still standing today (an achievement due to their purpose of being easy to disassemble).
Today, the Trulli are effectively utilized to develop tourism. Many trulli become motels and hotels with full furniture and amenities inside. Some other trulli were built into bars, pubs, eateries, serving the needs of tourists.
You can imagine the Puglian farmers, who had to tear down their houses whenever the inspection was going on, not very happy with the situation. By the 1700s and after several petitions from residents disgruntled by the Acquaviva family’s continued treatment and rule, the King granted them their wish to become a ‘royal’ town, and thus that could not evade the taxes of their feudal lords.
Unsurprisingly, then, there’s less reason to make trullis. However, they stand today as a testament to the strong will to keep wealth, and the perseverance and resourcefulness of those who are powerless to take advantage of their circumstances. Nowadays, the majority of the inhabitants of Alberobello Town do not live in trulli. Instead, the town’s more than 1,500 wonderfully preserved and restored trulli have grown into souvenir shops, restaurants and, of course, accommodation for visitors looking for a unique experience.
You can also join a two-hour walking tour of the town to discover more about the history and importance of trulli.
Explore Alberobello Town (#alberobello travel blog)
When you reach the center of town, it’s immediately clear where to go – the Rione Monti in the ‘trulli area’. Up a small hill, it holds more than 1,000 trulli and almost no other type of construction. It’s a tourist spot, with gift shops every other way, and it’s also very pretty.
In Rione Monti, the shop owner will sit or stand outside and try to invite you inside to look around and buy something. Tourism is clearly the lifeblood of the economy in the town of Alberobello, so try to contribute if you find something you like or want as a souvenir.
There are eight lanes that lead almost parallel to each other from the town square, up the hill in the oldest part of town called the Rione dei Monti. All roads lead to the Church of Sant’Antonio da Padova – the only Trulli Church in the world. The street is fascinating; filled with houses, shops, restaurants, ice cream parlors and is visually appealing enough to spend hours just walking around and admiring the fairytale town.
For a more authentic sense of what it means to live among the trullis, head through the Rione Aia Piccola district, which has about 500 or so trulli and is less commercialized. That’s where you can see locals living.
Italians know how to make good gelato (ice cream), and it’s not difficult to find a Gelateria on the street Alberobello town, such as Arte Fredda, the award-winning ice cream parlor in the old town that has been selling delicious and traditional ice cream since 1994.
If you’re visiting Alberobello, your experience wouldn’t be complete without staying at least a night at one of the many trullo guest houses or B&Bs available in town. Has a price to suit everyone on a budget; Whether it’s a romantic night for two or a novel experience for a family of 6 or more, you’ll enjoy the opportunity to step back in time with a stay in a quirky cone room filled with old world charm.
While Alberobello is completely unique with its setting of whitewashed streets filled with conical houses, the towns around Puglia all offer unique views from ancient ruins and tree-lined streets. cherries in Lecce to the dramatic seascape of Polignano.
When is the best time to travel to Alberobello?
You can travel to Alberobello all year round because of the wonderful mild Mediterranean climate. Indeed, here the winter is mildly cold, the summer is mildly sunny and there are up to 300 sunny days a year.
In Alberobello, spring also comes quite early, the weather is warm and sunny. The temperature will increase gradually when summer comes and the highest is from the end of April to the beginning of May.
If you come to Alberobello in the fall, you will have the opportunity to enjoy countless delicious dishes at a food festival, attend a concert at an outdoor music festival.
In winter, there will be a few rainy days, cold weather, the landscape here is still very beautiful, suitable for trekking, cycling or horseback riding. Therefore, traveling to Alberobello in winter will also promise to bring you unforgettable unique experiences.
Shooting points at Alberobello (#alberobello travel blog)
- If you want to take a panoramic shot of Alberobello from above. You can choose the courtyard next to the church Chiesetta rettoria SS. Sacramento e S.Lucia compatrona – Piazza GianGirolamo II D’Acquaviva D’Aragona, 70011 Alberobello (GPS: 40.78352, 17.23803) or the garden next to the Bar “Villa Belvedere” – Via Duca degli Abruzzi, 2A, 70011 Alberobello (GPS: 40,78322) , 17.238849)
- The area with the highest concentration of trulli (and also most tourists) Alberobello is in Rione Monti, runs along Via Monte S. Michele and parallel streets (GPS: 40.78211, 17.236996).
- On the other side of the hill, the Rione Aia Piccola area has less tourism development, almost no restaurants or souvenir shops are open. So maybe it feels closer. The angle taken here (GPS: 40.78296, 17.240001) is always one of the most popular Alberobello angles on instagram.
Nearby destinations (#alberobello guide)
- The white cities of Ostuni and Locorotondo. Especially, it is possible to combine Locorotondo with Alberobello in one day-trip. The two cities are only 15 minutes apart by car.
- Castel del Monte, octagonal citadel, UNESCO heritage site since 1996.
- The Matera sassi, a UNESCO heritage site since 1993.
- Bari, capital of the province of Puglia.
- The hundreds of years old olive groves in Puglia.
What and where to eat in Alberobello? (#alberobello guide)
If you are tired of walking around the village of Alberobello, you can also stop to enjoy Piazza de Popolo at outdoor eateries. Especially if you have traveled to Alberobello, never miss Italian chocolate and ice cream (gelato)!
The excellent taste of the famous chocolate is sure to make you hard to forget when you leave. Then there are excellent wines paired with extremely attractive local dishes such as pasta or orecchiette and burrata…
Address: Vico Lippolis, 70011 Alberobello BA, Italy
Hours: 12:30–3 PM, 8–11:30 PM/Tuesday: Closed
La Cantina is the restaurant we ate the most delicious meal in this South Italy trip. This is a local restaurant opened by Mr. Antonio Lippolis, the father of the current owner, Uncle Francesco. Mr. Antonio, after most of his career in northern Italy, as well as Germany or Switzerland, at the last section of his life, wanted to open a restaurant in his hometown to honor the cuisine of his childhood with delicious dishes with his experiences and skills that he has learnt.
The shop has a simple philosophy, local ingredients, homemade, fresh and delicious as possible. The price is affordable and reasonable enough to be able to try all the homemade noodles they sell. I will never forget the taste of Orecchiette noodles with vegetable sauce or veal tomato sauce that melts away the fatigue of a summer afternoon. The main dining room is under a cellar-like cellar that opens onto the street. The kitchen is open, you can see Uncle Francesco and his friends preparing everything fresh like at home right in front of you.
On fine days, a few tables on the patio are also pleasant. Uncle Francesco replaced his father in the kitchen since 2004, and has done an excellent job in continuing the family business. The restaurant has been honored in many major magazines around the world, and Uncle Francesco as an ambassador of Puglia cuisine in Alberobello. The alley in front of the shop is now named after his uncle – Vico Francesco Lippolis.
Where to stay in Alberobello?
Visitors here can stay in these Trulli houses, because there are many houses built for rent, the price ranges from 1,200 to 1,700 euros per week.
Below we recommend more best budget, mid-range and upscale hotels with good ratings and reviews you can refer to.
- Trulli Holiday Albergo Diffuso (Agoda, Booking)
- Bed & Breakfast La Rosa dei Trulli (Agoda, Booking)
- Hotel Astoria (Agoda, Booking)
- Hotel Colle Del Sole (Agoda, Booking)
- Palazzo Scotto (Agoda, Booking)
- Hotel Sant’ Antonio (Agoda, Booking)
- Hotel Ramapendula (Agoda, Booking)
- Hotel Silva (Agoda, Booking)
Some best day tours, trips, activities and transfer services, tickets in, from and to Alberobello you can refer to
- Alberobello Walking Tour from Bari
- Puglia Alberobello Guided Walking Tour
- Trulli and Alberobello Guided Walking Tour
- Alberobello: History Walking Tour with Olive Oil Tasting
- Alberobello: Walking Tour with Food Tasting and Aperitif
- Alberobello: 2-Hour Guided Trulli Tour
- Bari: Guided Alberobello Trip
- Alberobello’s Trulli: 2-Hour Guided Walking Tour
- Bari: Alberobello and Matera Day Tour
Read more Italy guide here.