Picture Perfect: Polignano a Mare

The only day during our Puglia trip that the weather forecast showed full sun for was our last. Luckily, we didn’t fly out until after 9pm, so we had the whole day to spend soaking up the last of the Italian sun and holiday vibes.

We’d decided to spend our precious final hours in Polignano a Mare; a beautiful town that has undoubtedly flooded your Instagram and Pinterest feeds by various awestruck travellers. It’s a picturesque whitewashed town perched atop limestone cliffs, overlooking the bluest blue of the Adriatic sea.

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We arrived in town late morning, excited that the weather was staying true to the forecast, with clear and sunny skies for as far as the eye could see.

After a short walk through the old town, we scoped out the path that led down to the beach. It was a bit of a walk down some steep, long stairs, and through four huge archways beneath the bridge that adjoins the two cliffs.

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The beach is small but lovely, nestled between two white cliffs. It’s a rather rocky little beach, and we struggled to get comfortable on our towels, so I made my way into the water for a swim in the crystal clear sea.

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Ross couldn’t make it over the rocks in his moonboot, and when I eventually emerged back to the shore I regretted to inform him that it was the most wonderful, refreshing and delicious swim I’d had all trip.

After trying and failing to get comfortable on my towel, we decided it was impossible to relax on the jagged rocks and walked over to the beach’s only restaurant and bar. They had sunbeds and deck chairs laid out (for £20 a pop!), but – being the thrifty girl I am – worked out that you could sit on the big comfy lounge chairs for free, so long as you bought drinks.

Happy and hydrated, we sat in the sun, reading our books and sipping our drinks, feeling quite smug looking out to the crowded beach.

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When we finished our drinks it was well into lunchtime, so we climbed back up the staircase to find Pescaria. I had come across the restaurant while watching a food programme and had my heart set on visiting. It’s a casual but stylish and modern seafood restaurant, with the menus written on big boards on the outside of the restaurant and above the counter.

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We found a spot on a table outside, and I went inside to order from the busy counter; an octopus panini for Ross, a fish burger for me and pale, fizzy rose for the both of us.

After a bit of a mix-up with the order – which involved them getting my order wrong but refusing to give me the correct dish (they eventually relented after I proved irritatingly persistent) – the food arrived and we tucked in. The fish burger was a tasty mix of salmon and tuna, with a delicious pesto sauce and homemade potato chips on the side.

Ross ate his panini while I was inside arguing with the chef, but I’m told it was delicious.

Once we finished up, we took a walk through the old town and along the cliffs, winding through quiet, shady streets and charming terraces.

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We eventually came to a quiet lookout point along the cliff, which was exposed to the cool sea breeze, where we sat and enjoyed the view for a moment, before taking our first and only photo together of the trip.

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We walked back through the streets and had one last glance at the sea…

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…and sadly said grazie and arrivederci to Puglia.

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