A freezing trip to Puglia, Italy

As I told in my post on almond milk, we visited Puglia last spring. The weather was unusually cold (VERY cold, it was the middle of April, South Italy and it was +2 C in the mornings, shock!), but in all other aspects our trip was superb. We were so fortunate that the heating worked at our accommodation. We stayed at an agriturismo farm called Masseria Pilapalucci. We enjoyed our stay very much (thanks to our hosts Emilia and Domenico and the other staff, you made our trip very special!)

Masseria means a fortified estate. Pilapalucci's estate dates back to 15th (or 16th?) century (if I remember correctly) and is still owned by the same family. The current owners have worked hard to renovate the farm and start again the agriculture. The house is surrounded by vast fields of almond and olive trees and we were fortunate to obtain their superb products: olive oil and almonds. I don't think I had tasted Italian almonds before and the ones from Toritto region are supposed to be the world's best. And they are! They taste so much better than any I've tasted before.

The small tower-like construction was a place for pigeons.

Breakfast time! Famous Altamura bread on the front right.

We visited a near-by town Altamura briefly (see the famous bread above). It was very freezing at the time and we were really hungry, so we hurried straight to one of its forno anticos as we wanted to have some focaccia to eat. They asked if we wanted una degustazione and as we were really hungry, we didn't have anything against cheese and meats - not knowing that it would mean a seating outside (they didn't have any indoor seats). We should have cancelled the whole thing straight away when we realized it. It was so cold and we were already freezing. But as we were too polite, we just went to sit there on the terrace, trying to stuff the food (which was delicious, luckily) to our mouths as quickly as possible: bread, focaccia, different kinds of cheeses and meats, tomatoes, olives,...). Later we had to go to Caffe Ronchi to warm us up (with Padre Pio and caffè). I don't remember being so cold any time in my life (maybe I have to exclude Fuji-san here). I shivered the whole following night.

Ripening almonds

Castel del Monte

Masseria had their own cook, Francesco. He was very talented: he made us oh-so-wonderful dinners from local products. He had actually worked in Finland for some time and made constantly jokes about the cold weather in Finland (despite the cold weather there, lol).


A traditional cave-like housing in Matera. People were living in these until 1950s!

Free entry...

Our last day was sunny and warm, finally :) We went to Bari, where we enjoyed the good weather while strolling on the streets. There was this one small alley lined up with grandmas making orecchiette pasta. Pasta was left out to dry while the grandmas were having their siesta.

If you're interested in buying Italian foods for souvenir, I recommend going to Eataly. It's a huge store outside the central Bari (There are other Eatalys (Eatalies?) around the world too). They sell all sorts of Italian food products, like the olive oil from Masseria Pilapalucci.

P.S. If you're interested in travelling, you should check my friend's blog! Lately she's been writing very interesting facts about Finland and I hope you'll enjoy the posts as much as I do :D

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