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A month in Puglia, any tips?

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I'm excited that by the end of the month we'll be heading to Rome, then heading towards Puglia for a month. We've been talking about this for many years. I like to get off the beaten path so that I can have the opportunity to speak and listen only in Italian, something that's very difficult to achieve in the larger cities of Italy.

The idea is to travel as we normally do, winging it. I will have papers containing my research, each page with a certain town or village that I'd like to visit. They each contain accommodation ideas, sites, and restaurants to seek out for that particular town. We travel super light, using public transportation mostly, but willing to pay a driver to take us somewhere.

With all of the time we have, we can find a town and chill for a few days, or stay a night and decide to move on. So exciting!

The first thing we'll do is spend a couple of nights in Rome because I love Rome! This time I want to take us to Ostia Antica. When we decide to leave we'll head to Pescara stay a couple of nights, then travel down the coast and stay on the Gargano Penn. eventually making our way to Lecce. Before heading back for Rome, we'd dedicate a few days to staying in Matera. Some of the towns I'm interested in are Alberobello (I know it's touristy, but I'm a tourist, and I think we'd like to walk around there) Conversano, Locorotondo, Martina Franca, Ostuni, Otranto, Polignano a Mare, Trani, Porto Cesareo, Porto Selvaggio, Galatina, and Monopoli!

Years ago I had found a small city called Carovigno, and their website had a webcam set up in their main piazza. I always thought that someday I would visit that piazza. I would sit at my computer and watch people and cars come and go through the piazza and watch the palm trees sway. I met a kind British woman through TA. She has/(or had) a cute and inexpensive home in this town. I had inquired about staying there.

So this is all very exciting that it is coming true, and I wanted to share to see if there are any ideas or comments you'd like to share. It has been since 2003 since we were last in Italy, first time in Puglia. This time I get to spend a birthday there. That'll be fun. :-) Yea!

I know I have a lot of trip reports to read. Good thing, too since the very first time I had wanted to go there, pretty much only Neo had been, and (is it) Bob the Navigator? He had also written about Puglia, but in those days, that was about it as far as trip reports are concerned.

Anyway, I wanted to see if there was anything in particular that you'd like to share. Thank you.

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