Eco-friendly travel guide to Bari advises how to be a responsible tourist. Learn how to explore the attractions in a sustainable way and how to respect the local people and culture. Make your trip green by supporting locally owned hotels, organic restaurants and other businesses. Read more on how to protect the environment by making conscientious choices and how to travel green in Bari, Italy.
- Air quality: 4 / 5
- Exploring by foot: 3.5 / 5
- Exploring by bicycle: 3 / 5
- Public transportation: 3.75 / 5
- Parks: 3.5 / 5
- Outdoor activities: 2.5 / 5
- Locals' English level: 1.5 / 5
- Safety: 3.5 / 5
- Accommodation: US$50 - $200
- Budget per day: US$65 - $350
- 1 Responsible Travel
- 2 Air Quality and Pollution
- 3 Respect the Culture
- 4 Top 10 Places to Visit
- 5 Explore
- 6 Eat
- 7 Drink
- 8 Activities
- 9 Accommodation
- 10 How to Get There
- 11 Moving Around
- 12 Sustainable Shopping
- 13 Recycling
- 14 Work and Study Abroad
- 15 See Also
In the country of Italy, one of the most popular places to visit is the city of Bari. It is located in the Apulia region, in the south-eastern end of the country. And this city has around 320,257 people and counting, living happily within. Also, it is present along the Adriatic Sea, making it one of the best and most popular ports in the region. And, it has comfortable weather overall.
Without a doubt, the city is full of history and culture and the people living in it and those visiting enjoy its many perks wholeheartedly. This second-largest city in the south of Italy and the second-best economic center has gained the moniker of 'California of the South'. Plus, students come to this university port regularly, and work options are high too.
Besides all of that, the tourism possibility of the recreational nature is also visible in Bari, with many visiting it for a taste of true Italy. However, for the safest and most outstanding touring experience, you need to take proper eco-friendly measures. Not to mention, other similarly healthy choices, some of which are mentioned below.
- You should review the many governmental and visa information, and fill up the forms correctly. A lot of travel options are available and so research the routes and see which one would work for you well. Choose one that is both less pollution-causing and affordable.
- While many hotel chains provide their services in this city, you should opt for green hotels. Not only do the staff give environment-friendly items and amenities, but there are natural gardens too. So, you can relax and have a calming time.
- Many of the local businesses and artisans sell their products in this region. You should support their businesses by purchasing these items than those from bigger chain outlets.
- The tap water here is more or less safe to drink. Owing to this, you should not depend on bottled water always as that generates more waste. On that note, check with the locals if the tap water at a place is fit to drink or not first.
- You should buy clothing from good and eco-friendly places, and local stores. Even the thrift stores sell very fashionable items at affordable values. Also, limit the usage of plastic bags as much as possible. This is a huge waste-increasing item. Even if you get plastic bags, throw them in the correct bins, kept beside the roads or in the hotels.
So, when you are traveling to the city of Bari, keep these things in mind. And make the necessary arrangements before booking the tickets.
Air Quality and Pollution
The air in the city of Bari is quite good, much better compared to some of the other Italian cities. Among the general pollutants, the highest one in this region is nitrogen dioxide. As for the estimated concentration of air pollution in Bari, it is mentioned below.
- CO- 0.8 µg/m³
- NO2- 28.4 µg/m³
- Air Quality Index- 5 US AQI
- Air Pollution Level- Good
Consequently, you would not suffer from many respiratory problems when you travel to this place. Still, consult with your doctor if you have a severe respiratory condition.
Respect the Culture
The area of Bari has seen a lot of changes over its years of history. In fact, it used to be under the control of the Greeks and Romans for centuries and has a rich Illyrian history too. Later, it was ruled by other groups like the Goths, Byzantines, Lombards, Normans, Milani Sforzas, and Hohenstaufens, over different periods. Altogether, they did affect the culture of the place, and it is still prevalent to this day.
At least 3.8% of the total population of this city are foreign nationals, mostly of Asian, Mediterranean, North African, and other European origins. Yet, most of the culture is purely Italian, and the people here celebrate their heritage well. So, you would have a good time when visiting Bari, and the residents are very welcoming too.
You would notice a little bit of both traditionalism and modernity within this region, in both the infrastructure and society in general. In fact, there are four distinct regions in this city, older structures in the north, and modern styles towards the south.
Moreover, there are many festivals, activities, cultural spots, and nightlife options here, too. And you would grow to appreciate all of them when you tour the region.
Top 10 Places to Visit
Thousands of tourists visit Bari and wish to have a delightful experience on their holiday. Indeed, it has some lovely places that tourists and locals find appealing to go to. You can visit these sites and understand the city and its past more clearly.
- Basilica San Nicola- Start your trip with a visit to this wonderful church, and enjoy the tranquillity of the surroundings. It is a popular pilgrimage destination for many Orthodox Christians and Roman Catholics and is full of rich history. Irrespective of your religious background though, you would find it hard to ignore the majesty of this place.
- Castello Normanno-Svevo- After the church, you can visit this castle and learn more about Norman King Roger the Second. Currently, the people who do visit can notice and admire the exhibitions held here. For a fulfilling tour of Bari, do not give this spot a miss.
- Bari Cathedral- It is a lovely cathedral which once was the home of many bishops. So, besides the brilliant architectural beauty and calming feel, you would have much to learn about when you visit.
- Teatro Petruzzelli- This is an Italian theatre where you will get to see some famous shows and concerts. And afterwards, you will feel like staying there and continue enjoying the fun shows. Surely, you would love the mesmerizing interiors too, open and vast, with classy detailed decorations.
- Pinacoteca Metropolitana di Bari- An art gallery where you will get some famous paintings made by the most popular Italian painters. Indeed, this is a point of attraction for many tourists. You might not be an art lover but after going here, you will surely become fond of it.
- Acquapark Bari- For a fun time with your little ones in Bari, visit this exciting water park. It has many exciting rides and water slides which both the children and adults enjoy quite well. So, definitely give this place a visit.
- Archdiocese of Bari– Bitonto- The ambiance of this historic church is heartwarming and soul-filling. When you go there, a sense of peace would envelop you for certain. Therefore, reach there, view the beautiful architecture and learn about the past, and come out feeling more settled.
- Planetario sky skan- If you are interested to go on a journey of planets and stars, then this is the right place for you. Here, the shows on astronomy are beyond words. And you would have an exciting time engaging in the activities, too. Surely, this is one place you must add to your list.
- Sacrario Militare dei Caduti Oltremare- This monument is brilliant and it honors all those soldiers who sacrificed their lives during the Second World War. Indeed, this is a major historic spot at Bari, and you would learn more about the city and its past. So, if that is an interest to you, do give this monument a chance.
- Barimax shopping village- To fulfill your entire Bari experience and take back many memories, going to this shopping mall is important. Full of eclectic shops selling different items, both old and new, you would surely find much to choose from.
There are a lot of beautiful things to see in the port city of Bari. Full of modern sculptures and old-school Italian architecture, it would be a pleasant experience all in all. So, consider adding the following places to your itinerary as well.
- Parco 2 Giugno- When it comes to the parks in Bari, it is hard not to mention this greenery-filled area. Then, you can come here for a family picnic or spend quality time with your friends. No matter what kind of mood you are in, walking around this park would certainly relax you.
- Parco Tridente- It is meant for people of every age and the tourists have a lot of fun over here. Bring your children and see how they enjoy exploring this fascinating area and its many hidden wonders. You would surely have a pleasant experience here overall.
- Alta Murgia National Park- This place is huge and covers half of the city area which is more than enough. So, for a proper eco-friendly tour, you should definitely go there. The ambiance is exceptionally calming. And you can relax happily amidst the gorgeous natural surroundings.
- Bari Beach Club- If you are in the mood to go for a swim, go to this area. The ambiance of this naturally beautiful region is amazing and would give you a full Bari experience. Lots of locals visit here; so, you can converse with them and build a bond.
- Pane e Pomodoro- This beach is not meant for bathing but when you can visit, it would uplift your mood. Indeed, the feeling you would get here is fun and relaxing, and you can spend long hours admiring the view.
- Piazza del Ferrarese- It is the main city center where most of the tourists come and take stunning pictures. It is also a great spot to hang out, with the locals or your fellow traveling companions. Plus, a lot of the well-known areas are near to this place; so, this is an important landmark to keep in mind.
- Museo Archeologico di Santa Scolastica- This place briefs you about the significance of archaeology, with historic artifacts all around. Have a tour of it and you will find it more than exciting.
- Museum of Earth Sciences- For science enthusiasts, this is one of the best places to go to, surely. Full of exciting exhibits detailing the history of Earth, there is much to admire and learn here. Therefore, add this to your itinerary if you can.
One of the most well-loved cuisines in this world for a lot of people is Italian food. So, it is no wonder that you would have a great experience gorging such delicacies when visiting Bari. Indeed, the locals here focus a lot on preparing and serving mouthwatering dishes, made of the freshest ingredients.
In fact, whether you are a lover of vegetarian delights or non-vegetarian options, there are many restaurants that serve both. And a lot of the chefs bring creativity into the classic items too, like pasta and pizzas with different toppings. Some of the most popular ingredients you would find in their food are clams, bass, cuttlefish, prawns, sole, anchovies, and lobsters. Not to mention, different kinds of cheese, too.
And the cooks create them in different styles and methods. Some of the local food items you must give a try include Sgagliozza, Tiella di riso patate e cozze, Orecchiette con Cima di rapa, etc.
Overall, you would get variety and delight in every bite during your food tour of Bari.
Traditional Local Restaurants
Traditional items are always the specialty of all the cities in the world. And that is the case of Bari, where the food place owners bring flavor to different staple dishes. In fact, many of them try newer alternative recipes, too, but the original amazing taste still remains.
Thus, when you go visit the city of Bari, you must take a step into the local food restaurants first. You would notice many filling dishes like red or yellow bell peppers, stuffed with rice or meat. Different pizzerias are notable locations in this city. Certainly, you would have a culture trip of sorts when visiting such eateries and meet many locals too.
Some of the best local restaurants you can go to in a Bari for a phenomenal taste-tour are mentioned below.
- La Terrazza
- Le Giare Ristorante
- Lievito Pizza e Dintorni
- Ristorante Biancofiore
- Il Grottino
Vegetarian and Vegan
While many travelers adore the meaty food items, the people of Bari give equal attention to their vegetarian delights. Indeed, the restaurants that serve vegetable-centric dishes get the best organically grown vegetables and fruits from local farmers' markets. And they prepare them into healthy and heartwarming dishes, full of mouthwatering flavors and aroma.
Therefore, it is no surprise that many tourists, and locals too, go to the vegetarian food areas in droves. In fact, there are a lot of food places that specialize in vegan dishes, which include healthy and naturally grown ingredients. All in all, you would have a satisfying food experience in this city for sure.
If you are craving some and want to add such restaurants to your list of places-to-go-to, the following are some good spots.
Certainly, food is not something you would go tired of trying in the city of Bari. The people living here put their all into preparing heavenly dishes. And so, you would come across many festivals in this concern too, with stalls of street food. In fact, many tours also take place here, and the local guides take the tourists from street to street. All mainly start from the narrow street near Piazza del Ferrarese called Strada Vallisa. Also, many locals treat travelers with their homemade dishes, giving them the real taste and hospitality of Southern Italy.
For the best street food experience of local pizza, gelato, and the likes, give the following places a chance.
- 3-Hour Street Food Tour
- Lady Mastro
Truly, there is a huge variety of food items in the city of Bali. And, so is the case among the different drinks in this region. Surely, one is incomplete without the other for the best overall taste tour of this stunning city.
Liquors and wines are highly popular in this society, free-flowing and available to all during parties and get-togethers. Padre Peppe, for example, is a well-liked type of walnut liquor you can try, with an intense taste and spicy flavor and aroma.
For those looking for a fun night out, you would come across many bars in this region. Cocktails, healthy juices, and soft drinks are other drink alternatives available in many places at Bari. One can even opt for a simple glass of milk too, and it is safely pasteurized and fresh.
In the city of Bari, tap water is not something you would have a problem drinking. It is free of impurities. So, if you are thirsty and have no bottled water beside you, fill up a glass of tap water. Yet, it is better to confirm with your guides or other locals if the water is good to drink.
Some buildings have older pipes and that can make the water unsafe for consumption. Thus, buying bottled water is a good option, at least when you are going out to tour the city. Also, notice if the label 'Acqua Non Potabile' is present; that means the water is not safe to consume.
Sitting for breakfast at a small Italian cafe with a cup of cappuccino and crispy croissant is a dream for many travelers. Luckily, there are options for that in Bari, too. And the owners of many of such food areas create their food and drinks with the safest care and freshest items. So, you can go to them for a healthy snacking experience. The following are a few of the best organic cafes in the area, though some are not specifically a 'cafe'.
For a taste of craft beer, Bari is not a bad place to go to. However, that is not the primary drink choice in this city, and the breweries sell other types too. You can tour them and have a good fun-filled time with your local Italian or other traveler mates. The following are the best breweries in this part of South Italy.
- Peroni Bari
- Terra di Mezzo
- Lo Svevo - Birreria
A good thing about going to Bari is that you would surely find a lot to do to pass the time. Indeed, there are many historical spots like the Castelo Normanno-Svevo for travelers to visit. And you can roam around the Old Town.
For art lovers, there are galleries that they can visit and admire, full of ancient and modern pieces of work. Plus, you can go to the fishing spots like Porto Vecchia and tour through the city spots like the Piazza del Ferrarese. You can even relax at the beachside or walk by the piers. Indeed, for a scenic vacation or seeing the culture of a quintessential Italian town, Bari is a suitable place.
Yoga and Retreats
There are some good retreats in this city that you can go to for a relaxing time. The calming yoga postures would help you stay healthy, and the natural surroundings would rejuvenate your mind. However, most of these places are not located smack-dab in the middle of the city center.
In this concern, some of the best retreats you can go to in and around Bari are mentioned below.
- 6-Day Yoga Retreat in Puglia, Fasano
- 5-Day Ayurvedic Yoga Retreat in Puglia, Province of Bari
- 7-Day Tour and Ayurvedic Yoga Holiday in Puglia, Province of Bari
In terms of places to stay, there are many such areas in the city of Bari. In fact, many of the hotels provide top-quality amenities to their customers and are luxurious to boot. However, when you are budget-traveling or want to safeguard the environment, there are a lot of things you have to consider. Luckily, in Bari, you would get the option to branch out among many accommodation choices.
While regular hotels are also available, the green hotels are the better eco-friendly varieties. In these areas, you would get comfort and style, while also saving energy and resources. The staff provides items that are recyclable and you can also roam around outside in the open spaces. Plus, they do provide other attractions like pool areas, gardens, free WiFi, good all-day help services, food options, etc. Overall, some of the best green hotels in this region are mentioned below.
- Hi Hotel Bari
- Melo Accommodations B&B
- Parco Dei Principi Hotel Congress & Spa
- Atipico B&B
Hostels and Guest Houses
If you are traveling on a smaller budget, hotels are out of the question. Most luxurious abodes charge high amounts, and for students or solo backpackers, this is not sensible. Instead, you can opt for the hostels, where the costs are low and the people, exciting. You can befriend other travelers too and tour around Bari together.
The following are some of the best hostels and guesthouses you should consider staying in.
- Guesthouse City Center Bari
- Host Bari Centrale
- Archita Guest House
- Blablabla' Bari
While many people travel to Bari for fun, some others do so for a more long-term purpose. There are many possible reasons for this, like a long business-related assignment, transfer order from head office, schooling, etc. Accordingly, apartments are a better option for these people, and there are rentals available for that. The apartments are in locally populated areas; so you would get a view of people's regular lifestyle too. Plus, it is a more cost-saving alternative than long months in the hotel.
The following are potential apartment options you can try to rent in Bari.
- Villa Alma
- Bari Di Venere Apartment
- Garibaldi Centro
- Strada San Sebastiano, Bari
Many people in Bari do put up their homes for travelers to stay at during their vacations. You can try this option too, and get to know the local Italian residents more closely. For this, you would find websites that offer the connection but research them well first.
If you enjoy camping, then you can visit many of the available campsites in or near the city of Bari. These places are well-kept and have good natural surroundings all around. So, on your visit to Bari, you can spend a night or more renting a spot in these areas.
Some of the campgrounds where you would have a good time at are mentioned here.
- Campsite Dei Trulli
- Campsite Bosco Selva
- S. Stefano Campsite
How to Get There
When you are planning to go to Bari in Italy, you would surely not run out of transport options. There are many routes available to the area, including ones that you can take to visit other Italian cities later. Indeed, given that this is a port city, water travel is one of the best ways of traveling to this part of Italy. And it connects to many of the other major cities and towns, mainly Naples. However, for the safest and most economic travel plan, you should consider each of the possible travel plans well. In the following parts, you would get a more detailed breakdown of the available transport options into this city.
Of course, for a lot of international travelers, especially those living in faraway countries, air travel is a favorable option. Luckily, this type of travel is allowed in Bari, and it has one airport located 10km northwest of the central location. The name of it is Bari Karol Wojtyla Airport.
A lot of international and domestic flights reach there; at least 40 flights of them are cheap choices. So, you would not have to spend a huge deal of money on flights. Most of these routes are from other European countries, and you would get direct flights from there. Otherwise, you would have to book connector flights. As for the airlines that work here, the best ones include Alitalia, EasyJet, and Ryanair.
There is a bus service called Pugliairbus that would connect to Brindisi and Foggia airports. Thereafter you can take a bus, car, metro, or train to the inner city center of Bari. Generally, you would have to spend between $6-37 for these options.
To reach Bari using the bus option is a good choice for those who want to save money. One of the routes is from Sicily to the Puglia region, under the leadership of Onbus Company.
Some other bus stations are the main home station for many intercity buses, like SITA, Marozzi Buses, and Ferrovie Appulo-Lucane. Only the SITA option, from Via Capruzzi, covers local areas.
The main railway station that operates in the city of Bari is the aptly-titled Bari Central Station. A lot of the cities in Italy have trains that go through this spot. These include Rome, Bologna, Venice, Turin, and Milan. Plus, regional services to other areas like Taranto, Foggia, Brindisi, etc., also work through here. There is a second railway mainline called the Bari-Taranto Railway, that connects to these regions. So, you can use any of these routes to exit from Bari as well as enter it.
To save money, time, and resources, many travelers opt to hitchhike across the country into their destinations. For traveling to Bari, you can try this option too without much trouble. Indeed, there is a major highway called the A14, that connects Taranto and Bologna along the Adriatic coast.
Certainly, it is a scenic route and you can hitchhike with other travelers to reach Bari. The people here are very cordial and friendly, so it is a relatively safe option. However, you should still travel with caution and get car services if possible. Either way, road travel is a good option for moving to this city.
Without a doubt, Bali's location along the Adriatic Sea makes it easy to travel there by boat. In fact, many ferries reach this spot from the Greek ports of Igoumenitsa and Patra. And so, you can hop on these ferries, too, which is a very popular and scenic route during the summer.
Other ships are also available that operate the sea route, under companies like Azzurralineor Jadrolinija, Blue Star Ferries, and Superfast Ferries. The ports they connect to include Dubrovnik in Croatia, Kotor, and Bar in Montenegro, and Durres in Albania. As for the prices for such prices, it ranges between 40-85 euros overall, all different for different operators.
Of course, after entering the city of Bari, the next question on our mind would be about the other transport options. After all, you need to move from place to place, and that is not possible to do on foot always.
Luckily, you would get options for public or private transport for the inner city too. From walking to buses, you can avail of any that you prefer. And, they are more-or-less affordable. Yet, it is best to make budget plans and research the routes beforehand for a safe and stress-free traveling experience.
Given the beautiful locations and neighborhoods present in this city, it is no wonder why tourists love this trip. And walking is certainly the best option to not to miss out on any of the gorgeous sites in Bari. So, take a stroll through the Old Bari, or Bari Vecchia as it is locally called.
Some of the best places to roam around are inside of the Bari Vecchia mazes, along the waterfront, and other such spots. The roads and lanes in Bari are not too jam-packed; thus, walking around is a safe and visually satisfying option. Plus, for the environmentally conscious, this is a wonderful option for healthy traveling.
There are many bicycle routes in the city of Bari for you to get a scenic view of the region. In fact, many locals move around normally using bicycles through the narrow streets. You would get the option to join bike tours too, for a guided journey around the area.
Electric vehicles are surely the most eco-friendly mode of travel in cities for a clean and environment-saving experience. In Bari, many people own such vehicles, and there are charging stations available too. As of 2018, there were reportedly 12 electric scooters and 34 electric cars operating within this city. Therefore, while there is not a huge amount of electric vehicles present in this city, the statistic is still open for growth.
To travel within the city of Bari, the best option available is the public bus system. Indeed, it is a cheap option and there are many bus lines available. Most of the tickets for the rides cost £1 at the station and £1.50 on board. Most of the people in this city travel around using this method every day.
Tram, Train and Subway
From the airport, the Bari Aeroporto Railway station is connected via many train services. So, the intercity train travel would serve you well as you can reach many parts of the city from the station.
Plus, there is a metro railway service available too, connecting different areas in Bari. Essentially, there are two lines and they connect 13 stations in total. One line, FM2, joins the Karol Wojtyla Airport and Bitonito. And the other line, FM1 connects the city center and San Paolo suburb together. As for the main operator in charge of this metro system, that is the company of Ferrotramviaria.
When you go to Bari, you would notice many shopping areas where you can buy valuable local products. While there are big fashion outlets available, give the local artisans and shop owners a chance. They would provide you with properly-made low-cost items created with the freshest local materials.
To buy the wholesome produce, the locals of Bari visit many of the food markets available. If you wish, you can go to these spots and buy fresh vegetables and seafood. And, you can try out the Italian culinary delights farm-to-the-table style at some of the eating areas nearby. As for the style of markets, most are semi-open with one open-air market available. However, keep in mind that not all of them are well-kept and clean. Some of the best food markets in Bari are mentioned below.
- Open-air food market between Via Peucetia and Via Pitagora
- Market on Via Montegrappa
- Fish Market
When you go to Bari, you would come across many good flea markets in the region. For amazing locally made items at acceptable prices, you can take a trip to these spots. Indeed, many antique stores are available here providing beautiful old-school items that would draw you in.
The following are some of the flea markets you must give a chance when in Bari.
- Piazza Libertini Flea Market
- Defeo Flea Market
- Bari Flea Market
Second Hand Stores
To save money as well as resources, the shops that sell secondhand products are good choices. And you would get the opportunity to buy from such stores in Bari, and continue with your eco-friendly tour.
For the best second-hand shopping experience in Bari, visit the following stores.
- Charity Chic
- Second Chance Vintage Store
- Il Mercatino
- Gf Luxury Vintage
Fashion is quite well celebrated in the city of Bari and so is ethical fashion. Therefore, while you would find high-grade branded outlets, some small boutiques sell eco-friendly recycled fashion too. Most such stores, though, are based specifically in Puglia rather than in the Bari city center.
The stores that focus on eco-fashion are mentioned hereafter.
- Plants à Porter
- Marnau Project
There are bins and recycling centers available in Bari for the locals to throw their recyclable materials in. But, it is not greatly maintained and it would need some time to make the system more well-defined. At the moment, recycling is not highly popular in most parts of the city.
The port of Bari does focus on the environment, and the people do try to live a healthy and clean lifestyle. However, waste management is not at its highest level in this society, though the government is taking measures. There are waste management companies that focus on storing municipal and other wastes in specified spaces for proper disposal later.
Work and Study Abroad
You would get the chance to settle in Bari with a more permanent life-plan compared to only staying for a vacation. For this, you would have to look for a job or scholarship. Luckily, there are options for both available. For the latter, some universities, like the University of Bari Aldo Moro, do take in international students. As for foreigners wishing to work in this city, many top companies hire foreign professionals.
International students can apply for the exchange students programs some of the universities provide in Italy. As mentioned before, the University of Bari Aldo Moro in Bari provides scholarships and exchange program options for local and international students. Thus, you can take part in it and win a seat at the university and study this city.
Many Italian families in Bari search for foreigners who would take care of their children and help with their education. And in exchange, they offer a place to stay, payment, and other conveniences. So, if you are interested, you can apply for the au-pair jobs in Bari, from the reliable sites available on the internet.
To give a more hands-on effort in improving Bari conditions and the environment, you can take part in the volunteering programs there. There are such options available since many nonprofit organizations conduct their operations in the city. Indeed, you can also help the locals with their businesses, like working in the farms and gardens to improve the ecology and their produce.