VILLAGES OF PUGLIA: THE MOUNTAINS OF DAUNIA & GARGANO
Gargano and Monti Dauni are the “green soul” of Puglia and a real paradise for lovers of landscapes and glimpses through the alleyways of ancient villages. Once called Capitanata, today it is the province of Foggia.
We chose this name, “Villages of Puglia”, because these towns are treasure chests to be opened slowly, small jewels where you can surrender in the sounds and silences of nature, places rich in history and traditions that you might not expect.
We can define them as tourist places in the sense that, when you see them,
you exclaim: “I really didn’t expect it, it’s a luck that we came to this place!”.
The page “Villages of Puglia” is dedicated to the inland villages of Monti Dauni and Gargano, in the province of Foggia.
The green soul of Apulia, a fascinating territory, but above all “Off the Beaten Path”.
The tour guides who created these routes are in Troia and are members of Monti Dauni Cultural Association; they have long experience in devising itineraries and cultural visits. And the photos showing the most beautiful shots and the most significant and exciting glimpses of these places were taken by the guides and by participants in a photographic competition organized by the association itself.
On the mountains of Daunia there are several different places to visit, monuments such as the beautiful Cathedral of Troia, fortified castles, and other masterpieces of architecture: walking through Bovino, Pietra Montecorvino and many other villages you can see and visit these works, which have survived until our times and from which you can admire a magnificent panorama.
We should also mention the exceptional archaeological evidence, in Lucera there is the Amphitheatre of the Roman period, the most intact monument of Apulia dating back to that period; in Ascoli Satriano the museum preserves a unique work of art in marble, a masterpiece of Puglia: the “Griffons of Ascoli Satriano” leave everyone breathless.
And the beauty of these villages is that they are very small, in fact the smallest village in Puglia is in this area and it’s called Celle S. Vito. They are small in size, but their cultural and environmental greatness is immense.
You will have the opportunity to visit the monuments and museums and stroll through the alleys of the old towns, taking pictures of the views and tasting the typical local products.
There will also be walks in nature with experienced guides, who know local natural areas like the back of their hand. In fact, in the heart of Gargano promontory is a forest called Foresta Umbra, the “green lung” of the region, in Gargano National Park.Troia, what a wonderful town!
Troia, town of ancient origins, is one of the most authentic villages and has been awarded the Orange Flag by the Italian Touring Club for its rich cultural heritage. Famous for its beautiful Cathedral, considered by the experts to be among the most beautiful ones in the region. Its rose window, the symbol of this town, with all those fantastic sculptures, leave people astonished.
Oh yes, the Cathedral of Troia is in the Apulian Romanesque style, its rose window with 11 mullions, an uncommon number, will bring you luck!
And its 12th-century decoration is one of the most interesting and evocative representations of Romanesque in Apulia.
The presence of the two bronze portals, work of the artist Oderisius from Benevento, on the main and side entrances, complete the allegories and symbols we see in this magnificent architecture.
We have been there many times, and each time we have photographed the church, the rose window, the façade and some of the details, but cannot express the emotion you feel when you see these monuments with your own eyes and, above all, we invite everyone to find the right angle to get the most beautiful and exclusive photo, it is a challenge!
Troia has a historical center that is easily covered on foot, and apart from the cathedral there are other churches which are also very interesting, including the church of S. Basilio and the church of S. Francesco.
A rich collection, not to be missed, can be found in the Cathedral Museum:
the Diocesan Museum and the Cathedral Treasury Museum.
Exultets are a flagship of the Cathedral Treasury Museum.
There are only 32 examples in the world and 3 of them are kept in Troia.
They are parchment scrolls dating back to the 11th/12th centuries, within which profound theological truths are condensed, thanks to patient writing and miniature work.
This is a gourmet tour, because in Troia, just a few steps away from the magnificent rose window, there is a pastry shop that prepares incomparably tasty sweets.
It is sweet and beautiful to visit, and with a guided tour it is even better.LUCERA, the key to Puglia
Lucera, a town located 40 km from Foggia, a real discovery, is very rich in history. It is called the key to Puglia because there is so much to visit.
Lucera stands on a hill formed by three hills, Monte Albano, Monte Belvedere and Monte Sacro, dominating the Tavoliere delle Puglie, a mainly flat area.
The nature around the town is full of wheat fields, olive groves and vineyards, which in this area produce a considerable amount of wine.
In spring, one of the most frequently seen pictures is the wheat field, still green, with fiery red poppies sprouting and brushing against each other as the wind blows.
Letting yourself go is what you need to do in Lucera because of the variety of styles, lush nature and rich cultural heritage: Lucera’s history can be felt in every corner of the town, in the glimpses of its streets and in the monuments from different eras, so much so that the town can be defined as a ‘city of art’.
Not to be missed is the Augustan Roman amphitheatre, which is one of the most important Roman monuments in Apulia.
And the Swabian-Angevin fortress, immense in size, with its towers still standing, located on one of the three hills, Colle Albano.
Imagine that from one of the entrances to the fortress you can see a panorama that sweeps across the Tavoliere.
Lucera’s historical centre has some fine monuments dating back to various eras, from the Cathedral dedicated to Santa Maria Assunta, in Gothic style, on Piazza Duomo, to the Baroque palaces of the 17th and 18th centuries;
It’s a town very elegant and richly decorated, there are other churches in Lucera, such as the church of San Francesco, a gem, and we recommend a visit to the beautiful Giuseppe Fiorelli Museum of Urban Archaeology (MAU), which houses artefacts from prehistoric times to the Roman era and the Middle Ages.
A cultural visit to the town of Lucera, surrounded by a nature that leaves you speechless, is a must.
You will leave more than satisfied.We really appreciate how people who live here warmly welcome visitors and make them fall in love with this land.
It was just a little introduction to intrigue you… Le Comari are waiting for you here, if you want to know more.
Take a look at our itineraries, HERE
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