Christmas in Apulia: uses, costumes, ancient traditios

Lights, colors, emotions, ancient traditions: Apulia at Christmas is all to be experienced!


A summer destination of excellence for Italians and foreigners, Salento is a place deeply steeped in culture and traditions.

Perhaps less known to tourists, its ancient customs are still kept alive by the natives.



Among these, Christmas is certainly the most heartfelt holiday, it is the period in which Puglia dresses up and, with its ancient traditions, becomes even richer in charm and wonder.

Let's start then and virtually approach the lively streets, to discover what Christmas in Puglia can offer us.



Christmas in Apulia is particularly linked to the tradition of nativity scenes, which has spread in this area since the 1800s, when miniature reproductions of the nativity scene were set up in every family, using natural and artisanal materials


This is how the crib art developed, then reaching a high degree of artisan refinement with the excellent processing of papier-mâché in Lecce.



* Papier mache

Strongly linked to Baroque architecture, as well as to the cultural and artistic frenzy of Naples, papier-mâché is a creative and extremely poor method, based on the use of newsprint and its processing techniques are very many.


The artistic nativity scenes have thus become one of the most well-known characteristics of the region, a tradition that has remained until the present day and successfully exported even outside the Apulian borders.




Since ancient times, Puglia has been a destination for pilgrimages, as it is considered (thanks to the Via Appia) a strategic point where to stop, stop, rest.


Even today, from Italy and the rest of the world every year many people guided by the faith visit Puglia and its places that are symbols of Christianity.



So, the Christmas holidays are the best time to discover the beautiful historic centers and the rocky soul of the villages of Apulia, reliving the emotions of Christmas in an authentic and welcoming environment. Faith and folklore are combined with the enchanting beauty of the places and offer authentic suggestions.




Among caves and olive trees, scenes interpreted with enthusiasm by dozens of figures, alternating with historical re-enactments of the events of ancient Palestine, we rediscover the daily life of the past. Animals, ancient crafts, perfumes, music, objects and tools of the past lead the visitor into a real museum / laboratory, to rediscover the roots and riches of the territory.




Studded with colored lights, sparkling decorations and DIY objects, in Puglia and throughout Italy, houses and squares are adorned with beautiful trees.

A curiosity will amaze you: in the small town of Calimera (Lecce), an original ecological tree was created last year with over 3,500 recycled plastic bottles collected by generous residents throughout the year.


The ecological tree of Calimera


It is certain that the Christmas traditions in Salento concern both the folkloric and the culinary aspects. In fact, its attractions are innumerable but there is certainly no shortage of delicacies on laid and decorated tables.

In fact, Christmas is the time of the year in which the traditions of the territory are rediscovered, they are the result of an ancient gastronomic culture that offers the typical dishes of poor cuisine that have now become true masterpieces of taste.




Potato Focaccia:

The focaccia is a classic of the Apulian regional tradition, unmissable its combinations with the most varied foods, from fresh mussels to sea urchins, from mortadella to buffalo mozzarella, the Apulian focaccia goes best with any ingredient because it is rich in goodness and flavor. There are numerous variations of focaccia, from the classic Bari focaccia to the simple Apulian one, every good cook in the region prepares it in a different way, with a little culinary secret that will never reveal to anyone.


Stewed lampascioni:

It is a typical recipe of the Apulia region where this wild plant grows spontaneously in uncultivated countryside, with a purple flower and an edible bulb, collected 10 centimeters below the ground.

Perfect as an appetizer, the preserves and jams of this fruit made by grandmothers housewives are also delicious.




                                                                                  Potato focaccia                                                                     Stewed lampascioni




Cavatelli with seafood

Rigorously handmade cavatelli with semolina flour, seasoned with a light seafood sauce. A very popular first course in southern Italy, refined and perfect if prepared with the freshest raw materials.


Orecchiette with turnip tops

Perfect recipe of an Apulian doc, it is prepared with turnip greens, a typical vegetable of the autumn and winter season, with an intense and slightly spicy flavor. 

For an excellent result of orecchiette with turnip tops, it is essential to cook pasta and turnip tops well, but you must also take care of the quality of the raw materials. It is essential that the pasta has the right roughness and that the turnip greens are fresh and crunchy.




                                                                                       Cavatelli with seafood                                                         Orecchiette with turnip tops




Fried cod with batter

An unmissable dish on the Apulian tables, a second course of delicious and easy to make fish.The fried cod can be made by dipping the pieces in a simple batter with water and flour or just flour it.


Baked lamb with Lecce-style potatoes

Meat-based dish typical of Apulian cuisine and, in particular, of Salento.

Simple and quite tasty, its ingredients are an explosion of taste.

At Christmas an unmistakable scent floods the Apulian kitchens and its strong and aromatic taste always makes young and old happy.




                                                                                    Fried cod with batter                                                         Baked lamb with Lecce-style potatoes





Delicious balls of leavened dough fried, salted or sprinkled with honey.



Delicious fried desserts consisting of a thin sheet, fried and then dipped in honey and vincotto.



The origin of their name indicates the fact that the semolina dumplings, so small, looked like pigs. Fried and sautéed in honey, their goodness is unique... one leads to another.




                                                     Pettole                                                                        Cartellate                                                                 Porcedduzzi


Here ends our virtual tour among the beautiful Apulian streets and on its laden tables.

But be careful: Puglia is still all to discover: every period of the year can offer you an unforgettable holiday, made up of breathtaking landscapes that change color over the months.

Don't forget our super promo: book your 2021 holiday by December 31, 2020 and, upon sending the quote, you will receive a 5% discount.


Trullo Mastro Francesco: for 9 people, trullo with lamia and private pool

Villa Falgheri: for 7 people, with panoramic terrace and private swimming pool

Antica Pietra: for 5 people, wonderful villa with 2 wonderful private pools (large and small)


Trullo Mastro Francesco   Villa Falgheri  Antica Pietra



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An absolutely fantastic find. Both properties were immaculately clean and the outside areas gorgeous. The host was extremely helpful and the couple of little problems we had were rectified straight away. You definitely need a car - the property was 12 mins drive to the nearest town, but the upside of this was we had the most peaceful of weeks, amongst olive groves in the amazing Puglian countryside. We would definitely recommend.

Hannah da Airbnb [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

We enjoy at the comfortable houses & the nice swimming pool. Interesting environment. See you again!

Sophie [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

Villa Falgheri is better than the pictures. It ticked every box for us as a family - great pool, beautiful grounds, spotless villa, terrific host and peaceful convenient location. Giovanni and his son were excellent hosts providing great restaurant tips. Highly recommend hiring a car and travelling to Alberobello, Lecce, and Punta Proscuitto.

Louise from Airbnb [Villa Falgheri]

We spent a week at the beautiful villa and enjoyed every second. The pool is large and invites for a swim. Perfect place to do a bbq. Beds are very comfortable. Just great for a relaxing quiet holiday. Ostuni is just 15 minutes away and our favorite place Carovigno is like around the corner.

Christoph from Airbnb [Antica Pietra]

Super nice location! We spent ten fantastic and relaxing days. The pool is a dream!

Sandra from Airbnb [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

The villa is amazing: spacious, well equipped and good taste. All the rooms were very clean. The description on the internet corresponds to reality.
The pool has been cleaned twice during our stay and there is also a vacuum cleaner robot. Our holiday to Ostuni was a great success and thanks to Sabrina and Giovanni we were very good.

Heidi from Airbnb [Villa Falgheri]

Beautiful and fantastic trullo and lamia set in a great location to explore central Puglia.
We enjoyed a fantastic 12 days here.
Ostuni (10mins away) is a lovely place to be close to with a brilliant selection of restaurants to enjoy.

Olly da Airbnb [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

Fantastic week. The estate is spectacular! Special attention to every detail, extraordinary kitchen outside to share meals and moments in the company .. surrounded by greenery, where the olive trees are the backdrop to this beautiful place! I hope to come back soon!
Ps Mrs. Marinella very kind!

Anna [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

We would highly recommend the villa. The pool and outdoor areas are fantastic and make it hard to leave the villa to visit other places.
A car is definitely needed as the nearest villages are a few km but really enjoyed Ostuni which is only a short drive away.
Communications were great and Giovanni was always available for any questions.
Brilliant holiday.

Steve da Airbnb [Villa Falgheri]

Really a great house. Very nice decorated, everything you need is available, really cosy, floating pillows are lovely etc.
Did not want to leave the house, we liked it very much!

Nathaly D. da HomeAway [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

Beautiful place to recommend! Very quiet with a fantastic pool that suits everyone!
Barbecue, several terraces and sun loungers!
Typical Apulian house!
It was like being at home ... What happiness!

Andrea Ucci da Airbnb [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

We rented this structure to carry out a photo shoot.
The setting proved to be better than expected, we found all the situations we needed to work; the opportunity to sleep for the whole group including the models saved us a lot of time and money from the hotel.
The property has been available to solve all problems even on Sunday.

Luca di La Fabbrica del lino [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

We had a wonderful stay at Sabrina’s house.
I can only recommend.

Sarah da Airbnb [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

We had such a relaxing time at the villa with lots of cooking, pool and an amazing dinner with the private chef.
A car is definitely needed for getting around.
The Trulli did not keep as cool as we would have thought and there is no air conditioning.

Natalie Lee da HomeAway [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

Wonderful stay in this beautiful place.
We had a fantastic family holiday with wonderful times around the pool and exploring beautiful Puglia.
We ate delicious food and were so delighted with everything Puglia had to offer.
The trulli was very comfortable and the swimming pool was fabulous.

Magro Family [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

Magnificent location: quiet for relaxation, close if you prefer the sea, ideal if you choose to sightsee. Excellent reception on arrival, fast and punctual check-out.
The villa was perfectly clean and equipped with every comfort, inside as well as outside.

Barbara da Airbnb [Villa Falgheri]

Thank you for a fantastic stay at this beautiful place!
We enjoyed the pool area and the outdoor kitchen so much.

Fam Hjorz & Fam Hedlund [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

"An excellent stay at this beautiful trulli. Very luxurious with wonderful outside areas with lots of sun loungers, outside sofas, tables and chairs. It was beautifully furnished and well equipped. The outside cooking area was good with a BBQ and pizza oven, although the kitchen space is quite limited and as there are so many great restaurants in Puglia we chose to eat out mostly. Well located to visit beautiful local town and the beach, although a car is essential and there are no restaurants within walking distance. We were well aware of this before we booked. The communication before and during our stay was excellent and well exceeded expectations. Sabrina was very helpful ad Giovanni was on hand for any queries throughout the stay. I would definitely recommended the villa!

Jessica da Airbnb [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

Two families with 4 teenage girls who needed this home-relaxation!
Beautiful setting with incredible pool!
We wish future guests a unique holiday in its splendor!
Thanks for everything!

Gruppo Mito [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

We spent 12 perfect days.
The house is beautiful, built and furnished with great taste, very clean and with every comfort.
The pool and the patio are a charm, we have enjoyed every moment: breakfast overlooking the pool and olive trees (priceless), lunch and dinner in the barbecue area and lots of relaxation. In short, the house was so beautiful that we came out very little.
You can eat delicious fresh figs, and enjoy dinners with a private chef at home. All extraordinary. Last but not least, all the people who welcomed us and followed us in the living room were hospitable and extremely available.
We'll see you soon!

Elena S. da HomeAway [Villa Falgheri]

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay, fabulous outdoor kitchen area. The Lamia has air conditioning but the Trullo doesn't! A very relaxed and pleasant holiday. Giovanni was most helpful with restaurant suggestions. Internet connection very hit and miss. We would love to go back someday.
Thank you so much. xxx

Carol da Airbnb [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

Week from 29/07 to 05/08 simply fantastic! An oasis of peace and mental erelax. A place surrounded by a vast expanse of olive groves!
See you soon!

Deborah [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

A wonderful week in July, relaxation and all the best you can have with your old friends, thanks to Marinella for the reception.

Mauro e Gabri & Paolo e Claudia [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

The location is really convenient, in a few minutes you can reach beaches, shops and restaurants. The area is full of things to see even in the fall, we hope to be able to stay there for more time next time. Very kind owner of the structure, to be recommended both in couples and families.

Ariele M. da Homeaway [Villa Falgheri]

This is a beautiful property, very tastefully renovated and equipped to a very high standard! It was lovely to sit by the pool and admire the beauty of the building.
The property is split in to two sections making this perfect for two families, each with their own independent living space. However the communal space is fantastic, we spent many evenings cooking on the barbecue and eating together under the canopy, then retiring to the comfortable outside eating area with it's pretty lights hung from the olive trees which frame the pool.
The children and adults enjoyed the swimming pool, and the floating cushions were fabulous for tanning your back!
The property is spotlessly queen with beautiful linen and towels. For a large group of people it was great to have plenty of refrigeration and freezer space, often lacking in other properties we have stayed in.
The property is rurally located but close to Ostuni and Ceglie Messapica both with an array of restaurants and about 40 minutes to Martina Franca which is lovely. Beaches can be reached in about half an hour, very busy in August but with beautiful sea for swimming and snorkelling. However we enjoyed very much just lazing around the lovely pool.
Thanks to Marcello, Marinella and Paolo and family for looking after us so well.

Virginia Varley da HomeAway [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

A unique relaxing place! We can not wait to go back.

George [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

Wonderful Villa!
A quiet and peaceful place for two families with two three-year-old children.
Everyone was helpful and hospitable, always present and attentive to all our needs.
We suggest to try the chef in the Villa. It was Fantastic!
See you soon Villa Falgheri!
Thank you all!

Famiglia Comi e De Angeli [Villa Falgheri]

It was an unforgettable holiday for us.
Mrs. Marinella is super cute and always available. The estate with its swimming pool and open kitchen is wonderful.
It was perfect for us as four couples.
We hope to have the chance to come back soon.

Hannes [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

We had a lovely stay at Villa Falgheri.
Enjoy the roof top terrace and the grill for a nice barbeque!
The house is truly excellent, better than expected! Everything was very clean and we had so many different seating areas to enjoy our stay. Such easy communication and great recommendations from Mr. Giovanni! If we arrive to Puglia again, we will for sure try to book this house!

Malin, Johan, Jakob, Marcus and Caroline [Villa Falgheri]

The place is absolutely perfect! Everything was decorated and arranged to make our stay really nice. We have been there with four kids and three adults and we enjoyed every minute of our stay. The place was very clean and furnished with very good quality. The host is very friendly and ongoingly reachable to give some help (restaurant reservation, etc...).
I would strongly recommend this place that is not only beautiful but also very secure.

Sebastien B. da HomeAway [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

We did not think of living such a rustic environment with such elegance!

Angela e Mark [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

A really lovely villa - the photos don’t do it justice. We stayed as a family (my husband, me and our two year old) and had a lovely tome. Great location with proximity to nice beaches and Ostuni only a short drive away. Clean and well kitted out and really lovely outdoor spaces. We had a few small issues whilst we were there but these were resolved very quickly. I would definitely recommend.

Lisa da Airbnb [Villa Falgheri]

Beautiful place and an exceptional climate! We spent the most relaxing holiday with our best friends.

Ale & Dino [Trullo Mastro Francesco]

We spent a week relaxing in this new and wonderful house! Finely furnished and equipped with every comfort, Villa Falgheri has allowed us to spend wonderful days! What we have appreciated most were the outdoor areas, the pool with its cushions and the barbecue!
Positive note also for the welcome and availability of Paolo (which is a warm hug). In a nutshell, everything is perfect! Definitely recommended for those who love relaxation among the olive trees of Ostuni!

Alan e Federica [Villa Falgheri]