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Where to find a property for sale in Puglia

In the sun-drenched heel of Italy, Puglia has been one of the Italian regions in the ascendancy in recent years. Its rugged beauty, climate and affordability has been drawing a broad mix of European interest.

Accessed by tour airports - Brindisi or Bari - this region is in Italy’s historically poor yet intensely rural and fertile backbone, and it’s famed for its fruity olive oil and full-bodied red wine and especially. You will eat like kings and queens for next to nothing - local shops might stock five types of mozzarella, and farmers will sell their produce off the back of trucks.

It really is quite magical, says our presenter, Amanda Lamb, who owns two properties in the region. “Don’t go there if you’re expecting a fast paced, action packed holiday. This is a place where I feel time stands still and you can really take your foot off the gas. Some of the most beautiful beaches with hardly anyone on them can be found on each coastline,” she says.

She along with Paul Weller, Meryl Streep, Mickey Rourke and Francis Ford Coppola all reportedly own homes there. Kate Winslet was shopping there recently, reports a local agent.

Why? There are breathtaking Baroque cities like Lecce are for you to wander around, and the towns of Otranto and Gallipoli stand guard on either side of the coast, while inland there’s the area famous for the trullos, or bee-hive shaped stone homes that are now UNESCO protected. The core area for these is around Alberello.

You might get offered one of these - especially a tumble-down one - for less than €50,000, but, beware, the costs of artisan renovation of these will usually be more than the purchase price!

The other typical type of Puglian home is a masseria [fortified farmhouse] - you might find one to renovate from €350,000; for a restored property, you are looking at €1.5m–€2.5m, sometimes more.

Other popular areas are around Ostuni - one of Puglia’s prettiest towns, a huddle of white limestone homes perched on a high ridge above the sea - are Martina Franca, Cisternino, Locorotondo and Polignano a Mare. The southernmost province of Lecce is a slightly different proposition from the north: a few degrees warmer, it is more Greek in ambience with a strong Moorish thread in the food and style of housing.

If you love traditional Italy and love beaches, Puglia might just be for you. Just don’t expect the infrastructure or choice of flights that serves Mallorca, of mainland Spain, for example. It’s rough at the edges appeal is why many people go there.

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