Panoramic view of the white and old city of Ostuni on a hilltop and with the cathedral on top

Perched on the top of a hill and surrounded by mighty defensive walls that separate centuries-old olive trees from clusters of whitewashed houses, Ostuni is an extraordinary sight and a must-see on a trip to Puglia.

Ostuni has an ancient history of at least 2500 years. It was founded by the Messapians, a people who came from ancient Illyria, and later became a land conquered by the Romans, Ostrogoths, Lombards, Saracens, Byzantines, Normans, Angevins, Aragonese, and Bourbons. The most distinctive feature of Ostuni is not so much its historical monuments but its white buildings, which are also why it is nicknamed the “White City.” The practice of whitewashing with lime was used to disinfect houses and streets, thus limiting the ravages of the plague.

It may sound trivial, but one of the most beautiful things to do in Ostuni is to lose oneself in the alleys of its historic center and be guided by the senses, completely captivated by the colors and the shimmering of the houses and shops and the flowered balconies.

The views from Ostuni are worth the trip alone. From every corner, marvelous panoramas open up, the best of which offer expansive views of the surrounding countryside and the Adriatic Sea.

Enjoy the beaches near Ostuni. The White City is just a stone’s throw from some of the most beautiful beaches in Puglia.

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