With so many of Italy’s most popular cities located in the Northern and Central parts of the boot, and top destinations such as Naples and Sicily dominating most travelers’ dreams for Southern Italy, the city of Bari is often overlooked. Known primarily as a pathway to the Adriatic and other locales such as the Greek islands, Bari is a large, unique port city in which travelers can expect to experience all the culture, history, and beauty that Italy is known for.

As the capital of the Apulia region, Bari’s most interesting quality lies in its fusion of the old with the new. Although the city has a rich, Medieval history – visible in its old-town section known as Bari Vecchia – it also boasts a current-day, metropolitan appeal, which is evident in modern restaurants and nightlife. Bari can be a place that transcends time, where travelers explore winding Medieval streets and historic churches, while also being the second most important economic center in Southern Italy (the first being Naples).

With a metropolitan area population of 1.2 million people, the city itself is divided into four urban areas. Bari thrives in industries such as chemicals, textiles, machinery, agriculture, and seafood, which has led to immense growth.

Its beautiful beaches offer a wide variety of water and beach activities such as watersports, sunbathing, and swimming. Its sightseeing includes a cathedral and churches containing hundreds of years of history. And its shopping district, found on Via Sparano and Via Argiro, offers great stores at which to browse or purchase souvenirs to bring home.

Bari is a city not to be missed. One day travelers can visit the Basilica of San Nicola, which holds the remains of St. Nicholas, and the next they can enjoy vivid markets with amazing shopping. The scenery can range from modern residential areas to historic districts to stunning beaches. There is truly something for everyone.


Covering an area of 45 square miles, Bari is one of Italy’s top 10 largest cities by population, and it is the largest urban area in Italy on the Adriatic Sea.

Its geography is marked by its location on the water, giving it amazing seaside views and beaches – both rocky and sandy. The water of the Adriatic is turquoise blue, making it a perfect locale for stunning photos and oceanside experiences.

The climate of Bari is Mediterranean. Travelers can expect mild winters and hot, dry summers. Compared to other cities throughout Europe, it is a great choice for outdoor activities. The best time to visit is April to October, where the average temperature is 74°F. The hottest month in Bari is July, while the coldest is January, where temperatures are 47°F on average. If traveling for beach and ocean enjoyment, the water temperature is best in August at an average of 78°F. If traveling in March, be prepared to see some rain.


So much of Bari’s charm lies in its vast history. So, for travelers visiting this coastal city, there are a variety of sites to see that hold historic significance. One of the most famous is the Basilica di San Nicola (Basilica of St. Nicholas). It houses the remains of St. Nicholas and serves as a pilgrimage destination for people of several different faiths. Dating back to the eleventh and twelfth centuries, the basilica is also noteworthy for its Romanesque architecture.

Another unique site to visit is the Cathedral of San Sabino. Though not as famous as the Basilica of St. Nicholas, it displays an equally impactful representation of the area’s history. It features intricate Romanesque architecture and houses a crypt with relics of various Saints from the ninth century.

Those who appreciate theater should catch a show at the famous Teatro Petruzzelli. While it is Italy’s fourth largest theater, it is Bari’s largest. It has featured many amazing performers, such as famed opera singer Luciano Pavarotti and ballet dancer Rudolf Nureyev, and it is a hub of Bari’s culture. Much of it was destroyed by a fire in 1991, but it was fully restored and is now a great attraction for locals and travelers alike.

With a prime location on the Adriatic Sea, Bari is teeming with amazing beaches to be enjoyed. If visiting the area, seaside dining and beach exploring are must-dos. Bari features some of Italy’s most gorgeous coastline, with both sandy and rocky beaches. Swim in crystal clear waters in the nearby town of Polignano a Mare and relax on San Giovanni Beach. Walk Italy’s longest seafront and enjoy gelato while watching the sun set. Bari’s beaches and oceanside activities promise to be as relaxing as they are photo-worthy.

Travelers can end the day by enjoying the regional cuisine which is usually created with local seafood and produce such as tomatoes, artichokes, grapes, and cherries. Top it all off with a delicious glass of locally-produced wine.

One cannot visit Bari without seeing Bari Vecchia – the historic district of “Old Bari,” which is contained within the city walls. Located next to the Old Harbor, a visit to this part of the city is like a trip back in time. The streets are narrow and cobblestoned. There are 40 churches, a cathedral, and a basilica to explore and learn about the local history. The small squares hold locals who maintain the traditions of the past. It is the perfect place to visit if looking for that truly authentic “Old Italy” feeling.

No matter what time of year one visits Bari, there is something fun and exciting to enjoy. During spring and summer, travelers can enjoy long days at the beach or take a stunning countryside horseback ride. During fall and winter, travelers can take cool walks to the theaters, museums, or historic churches. If traveling during the holidays, check out the city’s winter festivals and meaningful Nativity scenes. All year long travelers can enjoy the abundant history, culture, shopping, and entertainment throughout the city.

The historic city of Bari is a perfect gateway to the sunny region of Apulia in Southern Italy. From the stunning Basilica of San Nicola to gorgeous beaches along the Adriatic Sea, Bari is sure to impress with its many charms.

Don't just see Italy, live it.

Your dream trip to Italy has never been closer

No more endlessly scrolling travel sites. Our travel experts will craft the perfect, one-of-a-kind trip just for you.




We offer more Italian destinations than any travel site. Do and see more with Trips 2 Italy.

1 (of a kind)


Because your dream trip to Italy should be designed for you, not for the masses.



From flights and accommodations, to food and activities - we take care of every detail.

Your dream vacation starts here

No more endless scrolling through travel sites looking for the perfect fit. Tell us about your ideal trip and preferences, and let our Italian-born travel experts do the rest.

Your dream vacation starts here

Just share a few details about your ideal trip & let our travel experts do the rest.