Puglia’s Polignano a Mare is a lovely, relaxed, small resort town just a short 20 minute train ride from Bari. It’s best known for it’s cliff diving, Domenico Modugno (who wrote and sang the classic song, Volare), and it’s amazing ice cream!
Another thing it’s become known for is the Ristorante Grotta Palazzese. The restaurant is built in a cave overlooking the Adriatic Sea. I had hoped to have dessert and a drink there but you can only get in with a reservation and they didn’t respond to my email request until a month after I had already left!
One of my nights in Bari, a couchsurfer wanted to meet up and, once he arrived, he asked if I would like to drive to Polignano. Of course, I did! We arrived on a Saturday night and it was absolutely packed! We enjoyed the ice cream and wandered through the throngs of people before finally going back to Bari and saying goodbye. The next day, I took the train back so I could explore during the daylight on a much more relaxed Sunday.
After dining in Piazza Vittorio Emmanuelle II, I walked down to Blue Flag Beach. The beach is flanked on two sides by cliffs from which the locals dive into the crystal clear blue sea all day long.
From there I wandered through the labyrinth of narrow streets and among the charming white and beige buildings. All along the way, you’ll see inspirational poems and quotes written on stairs, chairs, doors, and walls. All of this is perched on the cliffs and, rounding a corner, you suddenly find yourself overlooking the sea!
This old town is easily visited in a day so if you’re ever in the Puglia region, it is a must see!