Dating from 1668, on the site that was once occupied by a medieval castle, Palazzo Ducale was home to those who ruled the area, and then later, in more modern times, became the city’s Town Hall, and the main Civic Museum. Visiting the palazzo is a must, for anyone spending time in Martina Franca. While we were there, they had a special exhibit of Picasso’s artwork, mainly his ceramics, with graphic works, and a few paintings thrown in as well. The exhibition explained that Picasso became interested in the making of ceramics later in his life, after World War II, while visiting the south of France. The exhibit was a joy to experience, not only to see these rare pieces by a world famous artist, but also to be able to stroll leisurely through a beautiful palazzo without other visitors, at the time of our excursion.
Like many of the grander palazzos, Palazzo Ducale has its own chapel.
The rooms of the palazzo are lined with beautiful frescoes, telling stories from mythology, the Bible, as well as the history of the city, and its environs.
Works of other local artists were also on display, in the palazzo.
After spending a few hours inside the museum, we headed back outdoors, only to find that it had begun to rain, and a heavy fog had settled over the city, enveloping it in a mysterious, yet strangely comforting glow.
We slowly made our way back to the apartment, as we were moving on to our next destination in the morning. For dinner, I went to a small pizzeria, and ordered two pizzas to take back to the apartment with me. They were delicious, and for both of them, the cost was under ten euros.
Next up: We head to the fairy-tale town of Alberobello!
Note: This blog is written in English and Spanish, and the author takes no responsibility for the quality of any other translations that may appear. If you have enjoyed this post, please, check out our archives for more posts from Martina Franca, as well as other Italian destinations. Grazie!