Alberobello - Apulia
Alberobello is situated on two hills, rich with olive groves and almond trees, which were once separated by a riverbed. The town is known worldwide for its "White Cones of Apulia," the legendary trulli. A trullo is an oddly shaped, squat white stone house with a conical stone roof. Some roofs are decorated with crosses, others with suns, geometric decorations or shapes painted in pure white to contrast with the gray color of the stones. The stones that make up the roofs are called chiancole, and they have the power of insulating the homes in the winters and cooling them during the summer so that the trulli's inhabitants do not need heating or air conditioning. The trulli are whitewashed every year to keep them clean and bright and to host locals and tourists. In fact, some of them have been turned into luxurious hotels.
The name Alberobello comes from Sylva Arboris Belli (forest of the tree of the war), the tree that used to cover the entire area. Legend says that it was a 16th century architect who built the first trullo with a special stone that he could interlace for better insulation. The town most likely became urbanized in 1635 by the agency of the Guercio di Puglia, the Count Giangirolamo II. Alberobello was declared a zone of historical importance in 1924 and now exists mainly for tourism.
The town is divided into two sections: the New Town, made up of modern buildings, and the Old Town, where the trulli stand. The trulli section is divided in two further sections: Monti and Aia Piccola. Aia Piccola is the more private and charming of the two, where most of the locals live among ancient buildings; Monti is more tourist-oriented, housing souvenir stands, restaurants and artisan workshops. If you are in the province of Bari, don't miss Alberobello. Enjoy a stroll down Corso Vittorio Emanuele, buy a miniature trullo and savor a delicious plate of orecchiette.
The easiest way to get to Alberobello is on the FSE private train line on the Bari-Taranto route.