Are you on holiday in Puglia and want to discover the things to see in Monopoli? Or you are still planning your vacation and you don’t know whether to include Monopoli among the stop of your trip. Well, in any case, this article is just for you!
Monopoli had a huge touristic growth in recent years. The Old Harbour picture, one of the most representative places of the city, was chosen as cover image in the article of the New York Times that placed Puglia among the 52 best destinations for 2019.
Monopoli is a place where you can walk around the beautiful little harbour, watch the boats lulled by the sea, the fishermen arrange the nets and multitudes of fish splash in the blue water. But you can also take a great ice cream or simply relax outside watching the people passing by. Monopoli is a city for all ages and offers everything from historical sites to cultural attractions, beaches, nightlife.
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Here are the 5 best things to see in Monopoli
1. SEA CAVES AND BEACHES
The stretch of coastline around Monopoli is simply beautiful. Crystalline water breaks in the cliffs and slips into beautiful sea caves. The best way to enjoy this incredible wonder of nature is to take part in a boat tour, if you are a Puglia Paradise guest you can ask your local concierge for advice. She/He will for sure be able to indicate the best tour according to your needs.
Along the coast and among the rocky cliffs, there is plenty of beautiful coves and caves. If you want to read our tips on the best-furnished beaches around Monopoli you can click this link.
2. OLD HARBOUR
The harbour is one of the most picturesque areas of Monopoli, with its maritime life and the lighthouse that offers a wonderful view. The best time to come here is at sunset when you can enjoy the beautiful view of the sun and the sea and walk on the seafront promenade. If you want to enjoy a view of the port and the Castle, you can go as far as the Faro Rosso.
3. OLD TOWN
The historic center of Monopoli is a picturesque tangle of narrow alleys full of shops, restaurants and bars. In the evening many young people come here to the lively nightclubs. In the area south of the old town stands the imposing Cathedral of Monopoli, traditionally linked to the cult of the Madonna Della Madia. What captures the eyes is the facade of the church, with elegant decorations, pillars and scrolls that create shadows and contrasting effects. In the church, there are red, yellow, white and green stones that create chromatic impressions.
Lovers of the macabre cannot fail to visit the very particular Church of Santa Maria del Suffragio, more commonly known as the Purgatorio. If the architecture is already quite unique, it is inside that the Church preserves one of the most important references in relation to the cult of death: the mummies. There are glass and wood cases that show 8 mummified brothers, dressed in their clothes pre-established by the brotherhood itself and in addition to these the mummy of a little girl (the only one in Puglia) who still retains all the somatic features almost intact.
It is impossible to visit Monopoli without admiring its castle which rises on the most protruding promontory of the old town, the most strategic position for the defense of the city and the port. From the tower of the castle, you can enjoy a beautiful view of the city.
In recent years, Carlo V Castle has also been home, together with other buildings and churches in the town, of the traveling photography exhibition Phest, a beautiful photography festival that brings together various thematic areas and photographers from all over the world.
The majestic Palmieri Palace is located in the heart of the historic center. It is built like a typical Neapolitan palace, in a late Baroque style inspired by the palaces of Lecce. The palace consists of a series of rooms that surround the interior patio. The most important room is the gallery that often hosts art collections.
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