Trulli of Puglia

26 Apr

Len and I had long wanted to visit Puglia and Basilicata, beautiful southern regions of Italy located in/near the boot. We had made plans a few months ago with friends Susan and Ray, and were all set for departure last Tuesday when Len got a flu/cold. Since our flights and hotels were non changeable, and he assured me it was nothing serious, he insisted I go. Thanks to some online video apps, Len sort of came along anyway.

Our flight took us from Pisa, Tuscany, to Brindisi, Puglia, where we rented a car and headed to Locorotondo in Puglia for two nights. We stayed in a lovely three room B&B, Da Concavo e Convesso, and used this as a base to visit other locations.


Our primary goal was to see the Trulli. And truly, they are everywhere!


So what exactly are trulli? They are traditional dry stone huts with conical (cone-shaped) roofs.

Their style of construction is specific to the Itria Valley in the Puglia region. Trulli generally were constructed as temporary field shelters and storehouses or as permanent dwellings by small proprietors or agricultural labourers.  The golden age of trulli was the nineteenth century, especially its final decades. Our destination was Alberobello, famous for its unique trull0 (singular) construction, and a UNESCO site since 1996.


According to history, peasants were sent to this land to build dry dwellings without mortar, ones that were unstable and could be easily demolished. This had to do with taxation, as dwellings deemed unstable and temporary would not be taxed, or could be dismantled quickly when tax collectors were in the area. Having to use only stones, the domes with overlapping stones proved simplest to build, but as it turned out, very solid as well.


The vast majority of trulli have one room under each conical roof, with additional living spaces in arched alcoves. Children would sleep in alcoves made in the wall with curtains hung to separate them from the central room.


A multi-room trullo house has many cones, each representing a separate room.


Because of the very dense concentration of houses, trulli have few openings except for their doorway and a small aperture provided in the roof cone for ventilation. As a result, they could be very dark inside. You can see here three front doors and associated addresses 42, 44 and 46, all within feet of each other.


The stone, however, did make them temperature efficient – cool in summer and warm from the fireplace in winter.


The domed roofs are embellished with various decorative pinnacles representing the master builder, restorer, or various religious, political or other symbology.


Urban trulli, which still exist in the area, date from the 18th-20th centuries. But some settlements began to be deserted during the second half of the twentieth century.



Although trulli dotted the landscape as we drove through the valley,


according to the UNESCO website:  their highest concentration and best preserved examples of this architectural form are in the town of Alberobello, where there are over 1500 structures in the quarters of Rione Monti and Aja Piccola.

While many are occupied by locals, others have been converted to holiday houses for tourists.


I had always heard of these interesting structures, but seeing them and visiting the museum helped me better understand the life and culture of a hard-working people. It is easy to understand why the trulli of Alberobello have been designated a UNESCO World Heritage site. 


Trulli – a truly interesting site to behold!


Note: More of the trip to follow.

12 Responses to “Trulli of Puglia”

  1. John Volpe April 26, 2018 at 3:34 PM #

    Beautiful Judy. Glad you finally got to see this wonderful little town. Terribly unfortunate that Len didn’t get to go with you. Big Bummer. As I may have mentioned to you, my uncle was a Carabinieri in Alberobello so I’ve had the pleasure of visiting the town on a number of occasions. It’s never disappointed. As with most other villages in Italy, Alberobello has festivals in the summer as well and they are truly a wonder. Hope you have the opportunity to get back someday with Len in tow. Great pictures! They bring back great memories.

    Liked by 1 person

    • blogginginitaly April 27, 2018 at 11:47 AM #

      Giovanni, of course I remember you talking about Puglia. That is one of the reasons we wanted to go! It was sad that Len could not come, but I took many pics and often showed him places via video. Didn’t have time to call your zio as we were always on the run. Perhaps next time with you! Ciao.


  2. Debs April 26, 2018 at 4:20 PM #

    I’ve always wanted to get to the Bari area – we have an employee from there and he waxes on about it. Lucky you!

    So was Len fine when you returned?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. bestson808 April 26, 2018 at 10:38 PM #

    Aloha Judy & Leonard,

    I hope Len is on the road to recovery or better yet have the flu/cold behind him. Mose folks get it hear because they being it with them on the airplane or they catch it coming over in the cabin,

    Judy, I learn so much about the old world because of your travels and excellent dedication to details for all of us to learn. Mahalo Nui Loa (Thank you very much) Charles on island in the Pacific 2,500 miles in all directions from any other land mass.

    P. S. The Island of Kauai set a rainfall record last week receiving. 49.69 inches in a 24 hour period. So much for climate change, dah

    Liked by 1 person

    • blogginginitaly April 27, 2018 at 11:49 AM #

      Charles, Always enjoy your comments and knowing you are along on our adventures. We also like hearing yours. Didn’t realize you were so far from other land! Wow! Stay dry!!


  4. jeanfromcalifornia April 26, 2018 at 10:55 PM #

    So sorry to hear that Len was under the weather. I hope he has recovered. That is a great place. Now you can be a tour guide for him next year.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Royce Larsen April 27, 2018 at 1:12 AM #

    Thank you for the introduction to this unique
    Italian Culture
    Yours Trulli

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Hilary Martinez April 28, 2018 at 12:11 PM #

    Wonderful window into that part of the world. Thanks Judy and hope Len is well again! Best regards, Gustavo and Hilary

    Liked by 1 person

    • blogginginitaly April 28, 2018 at 1:02 PM #

      Thanks, Hillary, as you sent this I posted the next part of the adventure. Yes, he’s well and I got the cold! But we are both fine. Best to you two!


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