Puglia is dotted with fascinating towns and villages, many of which make good bases for exploring the region. While some visitors like the idea of a country hotel with pool, gardens and rural views to come home to after a hard day's sightseeing, others prefer being in the thick of things. It's a bonus to be able to stroll to the local bar or restaurant in the evening and not to have to worry about driving back to some remote masseria, several miles down a dark, winding lane. A town stay is the most practical choice if you don't have a car and public transport in the area is reasonably good.
Puglia is long and relatively narrow, stretching more than 300 kilometers from north to south, and there is a great deal to see in its towns. If you're keen to take in the whole region and don't want to spend most of your holiday on the road, a multi-base trip makes sense. Or mix town and country (take a look at our list of country hotels in Puglia). Highlights include glorious Baroque Lecce (known as the 'Florence of the South'), Martina Franca, Ostuni, Locorotondo, Otranto, Gallipoli, Trani, Polignano a Mare and Galatina. Even if we don't list a hotel in these places, there is never one too far away. The order by which the hotels are listed bears no reflection on our preference.
Traditional comforts and hospitality in the heart of town. Behind the lovely Lecce stone facade the bedrooms contain frescoes, stucco work, cherry wood furniture and rich fabrics. A lovely little restaurant, small spa and gorgeous roof top terrace with views of Lecce.
High-tech luxury and stylish contemporary design in a lovely old building. The five-star hotel combines earthy hues and local materials with sleek modernism. Elegant restaurant serves local dishes, great views from the roof garde, spa and meeting facilities. City style for the mainstream.
Minimalist luxury in an ancient white town on the seafront. Interiors feature vaulted ceilings, bare stone walls, limestone floors and minimalist decoration in white throughout. Stunning views from the terraces and ramparts, lovely restaurant and spa. A jewel of a hotel.
Stylish rooms and sun-drenched terraces in a fascinating old building in the seaside town of Gallipoli. Arched passageways and courtyards lead to lovely rooms with white washed walls, wooden beams & floors, and paintings. A large breakfast roof terrace has a pool and stunning sea views. Beach style.
Contemporary style in a 16th-century. A lovely B&B with an extraordinary Baroque facade, cafe and cellar restaurant/wine bar. Just six Spartan bedrooms in natural colours with bare stone walls and floors. An utterly charming spot from which to explore Puglia.
Stylishly Spartan B&B in an old palazzo above the port. Elegant-chic white on white rooms with lovely sea views. Equally the views from the huge terrace. with its wrought iron sofas and big white umbrellas, are spectacular. A romantic little spot to enjoy the beach and the sights from.
Three pretty bedrooms and a gorgeous garden in a family palazzo. Chintzy fabrics, pictures and family antiques adorn the bright bedrooms - two have kitchenettes and access to the garden. The huge suite is ideal for groups or families. A great value choice.
Waterfront location and historic setting with good value prices. A great choice for families or groups on a budget. Beautiful townhouse with private balconies overlooking the seafront and small beach. Public spaces are decorated with beautiful murals, painted ceilings, chandeliers and antiques.