Polignano a Mare [Puglia]

Polignano a Mare puglia drone most underrated place europe blog

Polignano a Mare is a hidden gem of Italy that should be on your list of places to travel to next!

Driving along the beach road south from Bari, we didn’t really know what to expect. We had seen photos on Instagram, read a few blogs, but no one we knew had ever visited Polignano a Mare. Tess has Italian heritage and most of them hadn’t even visited. We first stumbled upon Polignano a Mare when Tess watched a few travel snaps from Zoe Foster-Blake. Ky dug up a few stunning Instagram shots and it was added to our itinerary.

Whitewashed stone streets, an afternoon sea breeze, and one of the most stunning beaches tucked into the town, Polignano a Mare exceeded our expectations. The most well known town in Puglia served as our gateway to the region, with our 2 night stay enough to wet our appetite and have us saying “we should have stayed longer”. Our two days consisted of an early morning swim and/or run, a coffee (see our recommendation below), wandering the adorable streets, another swim at the stunning beach (Lama Monachile), and some great Italian wine in the evenings.

Where is Polignano a Mare:

Located in Puglia, the ‘heel of the boot’ in the south of Italy along the Mediterranean coast. This region isn’t widely known and explored by Australians (and other non-Europeans), however this is beginning to change. We both commented multiple times that Polignano and Puglia as a whole had much more of a local feel than other parts of Europe. Polignano a Mare is situated a 30 minute drive south of Bari. We will discuss getting around the region (e.g. driving vs public transport) in a later blog post.

Key highlights – don’t miss these when visiting Polignano a Mare:

Swimming at the main beach:

The main beach, Lama Monachile, is situated adjacent to the old town, and only a few minutes walk from the city. You walk down a narrow canyon, under an old bridge, and are treated with a stunning little beach. The beach is a ‘stone beach’, so don’t expect Australian style sandy beaches, however the water is warm, clear and there’s numerous rocks to lay down a towel and get some rays!

Wandering the old town streets:

Polignano a Mare isn’t a large town, but the streets are narrow and aesthetic. Bring your camera (or phone) because you won’t be able to stop taking pictures. Hunt around for the view points on the cliff edges, (particularly here).

Our accommodation:

Situated less than 5 minutes from the beach, old town and main square, our accommodation was one of the best on our trip so far! This cute apartment also had kitchen facilities, a washing machine and the ability to house up to 4 people if needed (we only had the two of us). The owner’s father let us in, speaking no English, but offering outstanding hospitality. This was exemplified by him knocking on our door on our first morning, asking for a plate in broken English, and then surprising us a few minutes later with a plate of fresh figs, apricots and cherries. Overall, this accommodation is somewhere you should definitely consider staying if visiting Polignano a Mare (SEE HERE).


Lunch at Pescaria

We were particularly keen to try the fresh seafood in the south of Italy. Another travel blog raved about Pescaria and we couldn’t wait to try it! The food was so good we visited twice! Octopus rolls, a  salmon salad (salmon, walnut, fig, cheese, rocket and more!), tuna steak and grilled squid were all incredible. Add this one to your list as some of the best seafood in Polignano a Mare.

Coffee at Il Libro Possibile Café:

A few minute walk out of the old town, situated close to the train station, Il Libro Possibilie delivered the best coffee we had in Polignano a Mare. Couple the good coffee with a cute indoor (a bookstore) and outdoor (a bougainvillea covered terrace) areas and you have the prefect stop for your caffeine hit!

Taking a few stunning drone shots:

Polignano a Mare ranks as one of the better places Ky has launched his little DJI Mini 2. The stark contrast between the white houses and the stunning blue water provides incredible footage. From our research, flying a DJI Mini 2 (as it is <250g) away from people and not over the town is legal in the region (however always do your own research before flying). Stay tuned for more stunning drone shots from Puglia in future editions of Drone Diaries.

A wine at Buongustaio:

Located on the main street, this little unassuming wine bar offers a perfect budget friendly option for a vino and taste of local cuisine. Sitting amongst the locals and Italian tourists was a moment we will definitely cherish from our trip!

Making friends with fellow travellers:

There’s something about travelling that fosters a mindset of putting yourself out there, meeting new people, and trying different experiences. Whilst relaxing on the rocks after one of our many swims in the stunning waters of Polignano a Mare, we struck up a conversation with fellow travellers. Our trips and stories were surprisingly similar, and we hit it off, spending a few hours chatting before later meeting up for a drink. We will hopefully look to catch up later in our travels!

So should you visit Polignano a Mare?

Yes, yes, YES! We loved our stay and could easily have stayed longer. Make sure to read our blog about Puglia to hear our thoughts about the best time of year to visit, getting in soon to beat the inevitable tourist hype and more!


Check out the things you MUST DO when in Cinque Terre!

Take a look at some more highlights, tips and advice from our travels in Italy! Check it out here!

Check out further highlights from our time in the Europe! Take a look!

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Comments (4):

  1. Di Raf

    July 1, 2022 at 7:10 am

    Puglia looks amazing!!👌👌👌

    • Ky

      July 2, 2022 at 3:02 am

      Thank you! It should be next on your list!!


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