The drive to Bari seemed the longest we had undertaken for some time. It wasn’t until we sat down for dinner that we realised why… the road was flat and straight. In fact it was the first flat, straight road we had driven since the Desert Highway in Jordan back in March.
Bari is in the Puglia region of Italy, in one of Italy’s main food bowls. There are acres of olives and vines, interspersed with fields of grain already golden in the hot sun. It must be windy here as there are also acres of wind farms.
Bari has its own ancient city, but it is a living city, not full of souvenir shops and cafes. It is instead a city where people live. Walking around the narrow twisting streets, where locals sit outside their front doors to cool off in the evening and kids play, was rather like walking through someone’s living room.
Still hot 35C+ every day, we choose a nice cafe for lunch and then visited the Norman Castle which had an interesting collection of artefact replicas that didn’t really belong to any particular period. They were a collection of “Meaningful Medieval Sculptures from the Puglia Region”.
As well as the ancient town, Bari has a new, old town of majestic Venetian buildings on beautiful tree lined avenues. All the up-market shops are there, but I did notice that the Amarni shop would reopen for their autumn-winter collection.
We stayed in the Mercure hotel set in beautiful gardens, which might have been larger had the car parks not been added. Parking is a premium commodity in Italy.
After visiting Alberobello, we took the ferry from Bari to Bar, Montenegro.