Castel del Monte
Castel del Monte is protected by the UNESCO as a World Heritage of Humanity.
It's a castle built on a hill near Bari in 13th century by the Emperor Federico II di Svevia,maybe as an hunting residence.Unguarded since the XVII century,it was deprived of sculptures and marbles,ransomed by the State in 1876,and then restored.
It is characterized by an unusual octagonal form with 8 octagonal angular towers,an harmonious mix of architectural elements from different cultures(classical,Muslim and northeuropean),and by a particular atmosphere that enraptures the observer.
It's impossible to lose this masterpiece of the medieval architecture,which reflects the humanism of its founder Federico II,full of symbolic significances connected to the esotericism,astrology and alchemy,the real function and the structure of which are still a mystery.
It's also rapresented on the Italian 1 eurocent coin.
All the infos about opening time,tickets' prices,how to reach Castel del Monte are available on the internet site below.
Alberobello and the "Trulli"
Alberobello,a small town in the province of Bari declared by the UNESCO a World Heritage of the Humanity,is considered "the Capital of the Trulli".The "trulli" are particular drywall white constructions characterized by the typical conical grey roofs with strange symbols,connected with Christian,primitive and magic traditions.The origin of the trulli is really singular: the zone of Alberobello,first called Selva,was a feud of the counts of Conversano,that haven't the royal authorization to set up a new built-up area;so the count Giangirolamo II Acquaviva d'Aragona imposed to his farmers to built drywall homes,dismantleble,in a single night,in case of royal inspection.
They are known all over the world for their singularity and beauty and represent one of the best examples of the Italian popular architecture.
The trulli are also situated in the countries around Locorotondo(BARI),Cisternino(BRINDISI),Martina Franca(TARANTO) and other small town of the beautiful "Valle d'Itria".
Jim35's Bari Page
Photo: countryside from train on way to Bari from Naples.
Unfortuantely there is not much by way of pictures or comments here since I only passed through Bari in order to catch a ferry to Greece. But I can tell you how to do that...