The streets of Monopoli are lined with icons, a fact that is not unusual for Italia. They just seem slightly more noticeable here, as most of the buildings, in the Old Town, are painted white, and so they stand out. According to a legend, Saint Peter preached to the people of the town, when he was passing by the city, back in the year 43. The Cripta Rupestre Madonna del Soccorso is open to the public, for a few hours each day. For a small donation, you are allowed to descend steps and visit the church carved out of the stone beneath the city. There was a kind man keeping watch while I visited, and he took me around the space, explaining the frescoes and the history of the place. It was wonderful!Piazza Palmieri is a lovely square in the heart of the Old Town. Caffè nel Chiasso is a great place for lunch, or even just a coffee. When the weather is permitting, there are tables outside, but even if not, it’s a nice, comfortable spot in which to refuel!The locals always get the good parking spaces!This beautiful large icon is actually found on the sidewalk, in front of a bar, near one of the entrances to the Historical Center. Not only did the city have to fight off invaders in the past, but pirates were also a cause of concern. They would raid the city, taking citizens back in their boats, who they would then sell as slaves. No wonder there are so many cannons set along the walls of the Centro Storico. At one point, while walking down the street, I noticed black crows everywhere. The odd thing is that they weren’t moving! I then realized that they were fake crows, placed on terraces and window sills, to scare away other birds. We ate dinner at La Dolce Vita. While the food was fine, if nothing special, the main reason to dine there is for the atmosphere. The restaurant is in a space that used to function as an old convent. It is lovely!
Next up: A hike along the coastline, and the more modern neighborhoods of Monopoli!
Note: This blog is written in English and Spanish, and the author takes no responsibility for the quality of any other translations which may appear. If you have enjoyed this post, please, check out our archives for more posts from bella Puglia, as well as other Italian destinations. Grazie!