Torchiarolo, in the Province of Brindisi, is located 22.7 kilometers south of Brindisi, and just 5 kilometers from Casa Mare and Villa Rosa. From Brindisi take the Super-Strada in the direction of Lecce and then take the exit for Torchiarola. Once you exit from the Super-Strada, whether you take the main roads or the agricultural roads you will be surrounded by olive groves.
Arrive in Torchiarolo at the wrong time of day and you could be forgiven for thinking that it’s a ghost town. A maze of one way streets, the houses appear to be closed up and there’s little life on the streets. But come back late in the afternoon and the streets will be full, mainly with the locals. The Torchiarolesi are generally friendly, showing a polite interest in the stranieri (foreigners) visiting their home town.
Here you will find many butchers (macellerie), two fish-mongers (pescherie), many small cafe-bars, at least three supermarkets (supermercato), the pharmacy (farmacia), flower shops, where they sell calor gas cylinders(bombola) as well as flowers, and of course several bakeries (panetterie) with so much more to tempt you than bread alone. There are also restaurants, a bank, several hairdressers, hardware stores and at least four furniture shops!
For a few ex-pats (including us) Torchiarolo is the nearest small town for day to day shopping, post etc. The shops are normally open between 9am and 1pm and then again from 4pm or 5pm to 7pm or 8pm. Our best advice to you is to park your car and explore Torchiarolo on foot. In common with most of the small towns in the region, the shops and facilities are not neatly lined up along one or two streets. Instead around every corner you will find something new, a square here, a church there, a geletaria in this corner, a restaurant tucked away behind the cafe-bar front. After several years here in Puglia we are still discovering hidden shops and bars.
A stroll around Torchiarolo in the late afternoon or early evening, watching the Torchiarolesi watching the world go by, is just the thing for soaking up Italian ambiance. Take a cappuccino, a beer or a glass of wine and relax …..
Easter in Torchiarolo is celebrated in style. It’s not only Easter but the towns patron saints day falls in the Easter period as well. The streets are elaborately decorated with lights and on Monday evening there is a procession through the streets in evening. Find out more here.
You will get a real feel for Torchiarolo (and all of Puglia) town life if you take a few minutes to read “A Day in the Life of a Town”.