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Alberobello, the beauty of trulli

A Silver stretch of olive trees and flowering almond trees, five petals and five sepals for each flower, the triumph of white that often turns into pink producing delicate chromatic movements. On the other hand, the white colour of the stones of Alberobello is dazzling; this type of stone is the protagonist in the Itria Valley on the South-Eastern side of the province of Bari. Alberobello is the fairy village of “trulli” that are spread along the steep narrow streets of Monti district, more than a thousand “trulli” that stretch along seven amazing streets and in Aia Piccola too where there are around four-hundred “trulli”. These houses were built with dry stones, whitened with lime and have a roof with a conic shape made of limestone slabs.

 A microcosm that Unesco soon recognized and entered into its World Heritage of Humankind in 1996. But where does the name Alberobello come from? The most confirmed hypothesis is that the name comes from “Silva Arboris Belli”, a forest that has passed on a few traces although the story of “trulli” is more concerned with Giangirolamo Acquaviva, the Count of Conversano who wanted to create an independent feud from the Court of Naples in the XVth century. The environment of “trulli” from Alberobello is a magic world whose building imply a long work since first the stones must be collected then the “chianche” (calcareous stone slabs) are needed for the floors and the “chiancarelle” (smaller calcareous stone slabs) for the conic roofs while on the top of it a pinnacle stands out, this technique has been passed on throughout the centuries and it features mysterious symbols that are painted on the dome. They are esoteric signs for the wishing of health, happiness and good harvest. Alberobello still keeps its ancient relation with nature, a very quiet area where the old living styles are still alive: wonderful bricklayers who can work the stones, ladies who make “orecchiette”, the famous local pasta. You can visit the Museum of the Land, the Museum of Handcraft products and of old and new and the old tools that the peasants used together with a number of tasting events that celebrate the king of products, the extra-virgin olive oil

 The Casa d’Amore is interesting too, it is a place where many cultural activities are held, it was once the only construction that didn’t have the shape of a “trullo” and was built with the cement. The church of Sant’Antonio is unique in the world for its shape and it is located on the top of the Monti district and the “trullo sovrano” is a landmark too, it is a two-floors trullo where you can go back in time among the looms, the kitchen tools and the fireplaces. Lots of handicraft shops animate the streets of the Monti district during the day and in the evening the silence and the meditation atmosphere can be found in the Basilica Minore – designed by the architect Antonio Curri, dedicated to the Patron Saints of the town, the Saints Cosma and Damiano among the most worshipped in Puglia. crafts and the Oil Museum that hosts an ancient oil mill.

Luciana Francesca Rebonato

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