Abandoned under the Pugliese Blue

When I’m not in my wellies tending to our two-acre plot of olive trees, tucked inside the Valle d’Itria of the Alto Salento sub-region of Puglia in the southeastern reaches of Italy, I like to lace up my hiking boots, grab my camera and walking stick and head out on long, photo-shoot treks around my ‘hood.

With an abundance of sunshine cascading down from the incredibly blue Pugliese sky, I’m blessed with picture-perfect weather as I go in search for abandoned abodes that pepper the landscape — those iconic, coned-shaped trulli and oval-roofed saraceni. On any given trek, I’ll come across at least a baker’s dozen of these dry-mortar, stone structures hiding in plain sight.

Whaddya say you lace ‘em up, grab a walking stick and tag along with me, virtually, as I go in search for more signature abodes of the Valle d’Itria that’ve been abandoned for centuries and left standing under the Pugliese blue.




  1. It’s always good to see a post from you, Tom, and thanks for letting me tag along on this beautiful walk. I love the stone houses but I also love the walls. However, all that stone had to come from somewhere and that means an enormous amount of work! At least something useful and beautiful came from it.

    Best to Orna.


    1. Interesting comment Janet. We know that in Scotland the ‘dry stane dykes’ were built using stone from the hills and fields so it was a double benefit that the fields were cleared and walls were built to keep the cattle from wandering. I wonder if the same was with the Trulli? As you say it’s a lotta stone to haul to the building sites! Perhaps our intrepid Palladian Traveller will find out for us?👍

      1. Stones are either dug out during the excavation phase of a new build and used on site to make the perimeter walls of the property, or brought in by the truck loads, or a combination of both.

      2. Years ago when I visited Ireland on my way to the rest of Europe, I notices lots and lots of stone that had been cleared for farming and made into lovely walls and buildings. You use what you have, don’t you? I’d love to find out more if Tom tells us more.

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