Puglia, a region stretched out in the middle of the Mediterranean, washed by the Adriatic Sea to the east and the Ionian Sea to the south-west, has always had a very close relationship with the winds that blow on its lands, lash the coasts and beat the bleak plateaus of the Murge and Salento. Those that blow from the southeast, like the Scirocco, are hot winds with an oriental scent, harbingers of humidity and sand. From the northwest, coming from the Balkans and Trieste, instead the cold north winds. Like the Mistral, blowing coldly in winter and pleasantly refreshing in the hot summer months, relieving the heat of the hottest hours of the day; it is a wind that blows vigorously on the beaches of the Adriatic Sea, satisfying the windsurfers.
But there are other winds that blow on Puglia, and that with their presence mark the seasons, the damp Libeccio, coming from the southwest and bringing rain and humidity; the Tramontana marks the alternation of cold and hard winter days, when the sky turns gray and the wind brings scents and flavors of mountains and snow, coming from places so far from the soul of the Apulian people. Mild and sweet days, instead they happen when the Levante blows, the one that comes from the Greek islands, which brings with it the aromas of the south, of the Mediterranean scrub, of the pastoral and peasant world of the Greeks, which has many things in common with that of Puglia.
Knowing how to “read” the wind situation is very important to choose the best beaches where to go. Being able to choose the coast is a precious prerogative that only a few lands can boast, even among those with a strong tourist vocation. An extra advantage that allows you to enjoy the best beach every day. When the Tramontana blows, the winds come from the north to south, the Adriatic coast will tend to be rough and the waves to push towards the shore, while the Ionian Sea will almost certainly be calm, with the sea currents that will follow the wind and they will push out to sea. On the contrary, the Scirocco wind blows from the south and is a hot wind (coming from Africa). The Scirocco shakes the Ionian sea, while it calms the sea along the northern Adriatic side.
If you cannot perceive the direction of the wind, you can consult one of the meteorological websites that allow you to check the state of the weather and the of the wind, hour after hour, with short-term forecasts.
I have never been anywhere like Puglia. It is truly a paradise. The scenery is spectacular, atmospheric, charming and distinctive. The people are wonderful. I felt like I was truly at home when I was there and can’t wait to go back. I traveled from Bari to Otranto and Gallipoli and would like to see Matera, Vieste, Tremiti Islands, the Gargano peninsula and perhaps some of the Vulture in Basilicata next time.
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