Apulia, located at the southern extremity of Europe and in the centre of the Mediterranean, extending into the sea towards the East, has always been an ideal region for human settlement and an area of trade and cultural exchange because of its geographic position, its slightly sloping terrain and particularly pleasant climate.
Seat of populations which reached the highest level of civilisation since earliest times, its prehistory is a cornerstone for studies on the more recent Palaeolithic Mediterranean and European civilisations.
Coveted by East and by West, easily accessible by sea or by land, it was inhabited in the historical period by the Illyrian populations of the Japigi, the Dauni, the
Peucetii and the Messapi, was the site of numerous Greek colonies, was a Roman territory, an ally of Hannibal against Rome, was included by Augustus in the ‘Apulia and Calabria’ region.
It suffered barbarian invasions, passed under the domination of Byzantium, obtained a certain independence with the advent of the Longobards and the following Frankish domination.
Exposed to Saracen raids, it rebelled against Byzanthium in the XI century with the interested help of the Norman, who made it a principality.
It was part of the Reign of Sicily, the Reign of Naples and the Reign of the Two Sicilies, prior to Italian unity.
The history and the culture of Apulia bear profound marks of the Greeks, the Romans, the Byzantines, the Arabs, the Normans, the Franks, the Spanish and other populations which left indelible traces of their presence.
The contact with such different ethnic groups and cultures has strewn the Apulian territory with archaeological findings, castles, towers, cathedrals, urban and rural buildings and other monuments built in a vast range of styles, reinterpreted by the peoples of Apulia, who created an authentic “stone culture” of their own.
The dialects, traditions and cultures which still today characterise the various Apulian peoples seem to be reflected in the geomorphologic features of the areas they inhabit.
Profound historical-cultural and geographical-environmental diversities distinguish the areas of Capitanata, the Land of Bari, of Salento and the Ionic Land which compose the Apulian territory, and which correspond more or less to the present day provinces of Foggia, Bari, Brindisi, Lecce and Taranto; in fact, the area was long known as “the Apulias”, and in some foreign languages it is still designated with the plural.
What the culture and knowledgeable hand of man have built, refined and shaped to their measure across the millennia blends with the favourable climate, limpid sea, ever-present sunshine, sandy and rocky coastlines, verdant islands, characteristic grottoes and other beauties generously profused by nature on this land.
The kind southern character, the natural openness of the people, a truly typical cuisine, exquisite wines, religious and popular festival, historical commemorations, cultural events and endless hospitality facilities, modern and diversified, create a particularly warm atmosphere and make Apulia the ideal vacationing spot.


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