Locorotondo Puglia

Pugliese villages don’t get any more charming than Locorotondo. Home to 14,000 inhabitants, and perched on top of a hill overlooking the Itria Valley, Locorotondo combines a small town feel with a spectacular surrounding landscape. As you approach it for the first time, the white-washed buildings of the Centro Storico and the nearby verdant olive groves take your breath away.

The name of the village in Latin means ’rounded place’ – a reference to the historic center’s circular shape which encapsulates the maze of white houses, shops, alleyways and churches. Although Puglia is known for its cone-topped trulli houses, like those in Alberobello, Locorotondo’s architecture is defined by the cummerse style. The dwellings here have sloping gable roofs covered with chiancarelle (subsoil of the area) and are believed to be older than trulli!

While Locorotondo is less-visited than towns such as Polignano a Mare and Matera, it still has a reputation for being one of the most beautiful places in Puglia. The tourism initiative, I Borghi piu belli d’Italia, even recognized it as a village of quality heritage. Visiting this hidden gem is usually done in a few hours, yet to truly experience its authenticity you should go for at least a day.

By arriving early in the morning and leaving late at night, you will be able to make the most of the sunshine hours and soak up the alluring atmosphere. From getting lost down a labyrinth of narrow lanes, to sipping world-class white wine, to watching an enchanting sunset – there are endless ways to spend a day in Locorotondo. Below is a guide you can use as inspiration, but feel free to pick and choose the experiences that resonate with you the most.

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How to Spend Your Morning in Locorotondo

Aim to be in the Centro Storico before 9:00 am in order to have a decent three or four stint to explore before lunch. All great mornings begin with coffee, so upon arrival you can get your caffeine fix at one of the local cafes. There are plenty to choose from where you can try creative coffee specialties of the region, including Espressino and Caffe al Ghiaccio. If you stumble across a little establishment that serves cakes and pastries, that would be even better!

Once you are fueled up on a light breakfast, it’s time to hit the streets. Start in the historic center and marvel at the abundance of white-washed buildings, colorfully decorated doors, balconies blooming with flowers and plants, pretty boutiques selling local crafts such as vases and pottery, and much more. The first hour or two needs to be a spontaneous affair where you simply wander without a plan. You will be blown away by the lack of a tourism footprint here.

There is no need to rush when discovering the Centro Storico of Locorotondo. The locals live a slow and relaxed pace of life, and this will hopefully rub off on you too. Enjoy the Southern Italian sun on your face as you roam whimsically around the seductive street corners and follow your intuition to the max. This, of course, is a wonderful activity for passionate photographers who will be able to capture the distinct mood of the town through their camera lenses.

At around 11:00 am you can kick off the sightseeing portion of the day trip. If you haven’t already, be sure to visit Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II which is the main meeting point of Locorotondo. This square oozes pleasure and joy. Stop for your second coffee of the day or grab yourself a scoop of delicious gelato ice cream. Next on the itinerary could be any one of the town’s churches.

The baroque Church of Saint George Martyr is the most popular church for the few tourists who visit Locorotondo, but don’t miss Chiesa di San Nicola di Myra and Chiesa Rettoria Madonna della Greca as well. The latter is the oldest church in the town and boasts a typical cummersa style roof. Then at around 12:00 or 13:00 pm you can think about stopping somewhere nice for lunch.


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What To Do in Locorotondo in the Afternoon


Pizzeria Casa Pinto is considered the best pizzeria in Locorotondo and after walking for a few hours, you will be craving a few slices if not a whole pizza of your own. The secret to their success revolves around the processing of the dough. Casa Pinto utilizes a natural leavening technique which gives the pizza a soft and full-bodied texture. You can’t go wrong with any of the pizzas there. They are open for lunch from 12:00 to 15:00 pm daily (apart from Tuesdays).

Depending on whether or not you come in your own rental car, after lunch you have the opportunity to drive 10 minutes or so to the incredible site of Trullo di Marziolla. This is the oldest known trullo in the Itria Valley, dating back many centuries. The conical, stone structures and thick walls are situated on private property – so you need to contact the owner before you go to arrange a visit. The link above has more information around that process.

Another option in the Locorotondo vicinity is wine tasting at one of the local wineries, for example at I Pastini. They produce some superb wines including Locorotondo DOC white wine. You can book tastings through their website which involve sampling both whites and reds of the Puglia region. The Trullo di Marziolla or I Pastini experience will take you through to about 16:00 pm, when you will be eager to return back to Locorotondo for sunset and dinner.

Before you catch a sundowner though, you can’t skip the town’s viewpoint at Belvedere di Locorotondo. From here, it’s easy to see the rolling hills and land scattered with trullo that Puglia is famous for. After that you can head to Lungomare (meaning seafront) to await golden hour. Lungomare is the street that connects the panoramic garden with the square. Obviously there is no sea here, but the vineyard and Itria Valley views are very special nonetheless.

There are restaurants and bars where you can relax, and the area is buzzing with people. It makes for the perfect spot to sip on a couple of aperol spritzes, enjoying the final moments of daylight. When the sun sets, you will be given an extraordinary show where the glow of the sun slowly changes the fields and white-washed buildings into orange. At that moment, you will gain an understanding of why Locorotondo is called the “Balcony of the Itria Valley”!

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The Grand Finale in the Evening

For dinner, there are several fantastic restaurants dotted around town where you can eat authentic Puglian cuisine and savor an extensive wine list. One locally loved restaurant is Bina. The menu is filled with creative Apulian dishes and the setting, in an elegant vaulted venue, is about as romantic as it comes. In the peak of summer, it might be a good idea to reserve a table in advance.

 As you sip on your last glass of wine and reflect on what a magical day it has been, the feeling of never wanting to leave will sweep over you. But don’t fret, perhaps this was only your first visit in a long line of future trips. At whatever time suits you in the evening, head back to your car and drive to your hotel in Alberobello or Bari (if that is where you are based). The great thing about Locorotondo is that it can be easily accessed from a variety of Apulian towns. 

How to Get to Locorotondo

 Locorotondo is situated in the heart of the Itria Valley close to other Valle d’Itria towns such as Martina Franca, Cisternino and Ceglie Messapica. The most notable nearby commune is Alberobello, just a short 10 minute drive away. If you are already on a Puglia road trip and are staying in Alberobello for a few nights, then visiting Locorotondo for the day is an absolute no-brainer.

 For those flying into Bari, you can reach Locorotondo in approximately one hour by car. From places like Polignano a Mare and Monopoli, you are looking at a mere 30 minute drive. It goes without saying that the best way to get to Locorotondo is in your own vehicle. The roads leading up to the town are well signposted and parking outside the historic center is a breeze. It’s important to note that the Centro Storico is closed to traffic (and thank god for that)!

Public transport is available in the Puglia region, via train or bus, but relying on it for a day trip is slightly impractical – especially if you want to go in and out of the town as this itinerary suggests. The other option is to book with us here at Apulia Private Tours on our Itria Valley Towns Tour. We will help you discover this fairytale destination through a local perspective, with the added benefit of being picked up and dropped off wherever you may be staying!

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