#Hashtag holidays and peer-to-peer travel: how Puglia became the holiday hotspot of the Instagram decade

My partner and I love going to places that are off the beaten track. When researching our holidays, we find that search engines often display the most popular sights, meaning we might miss a hidden gem. Social media allows us to keep up with travel bloggers that have similar interests to us and get ideas for our next holiday that allow us to have experiences, taste food and see sights that might not have been suggested on our online searches or in travel magazines.

@marcus from a recent WeSwap survey of 2,000 18-34-year-olds

The WeSwap survey reported that 6.3 million people have had their holiday destination influenced by social media. 37% of respondents said they turn to social media when considering their choice of holiday destination. 31% said that posting holiday snaps online was just as important as the holiday itself.

The Instagram decade has given us holidays that are all about the “experience”. Search any forum on TripAdvisor to find tens of thousands of people looking for the best insider tips to plan their perfect vacation.

Currently there are 5, 317 topics offering advice on how to plan the perfect trip to Puglia. From where to find the best pizza in Ostuni (the best pizza in Puglia is actually found in Lecce) to whether Borgo Egnazia or La Peschiera will deliver the most romantic and exclusive holiday destination in Puglia.

Borgo Egnazia, from their social media

La Pescheria, from their social media

Whether TripAdvisor influenced David and Victoria Beckham we will never know...

The rise of Airbnb and its myriad imitators tap into that same desire for a more authentic and intimate experience providing the change to hang out in your host’s neighbourhood like a local.

It comes as no surprise that influencers have woken up to Puglia.

Polignano’s iconic beach

With its picture perfect beaches, from the iconic Polignano a Mare to the vast array of rocky coves and sandy beaches scattered all around the Salento coastline, the trulli of the Valle d’Itria and its white walled cities, such as Ostuni, there can be no doubt that Puglia has been well and truly discovered on social media to become the 2020 holiday hotspot sensation.

Ostuni, la città bianca

Even if this does mean endless Gallipoli sunsets or Instagrammers queuing along the narrow alleyways of Ostuni to replicate the same pointless shot, while metres away there is a breathtaking view of the olive groves stretching out from below the city walls to the Adriatic sea....!

 

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