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97km (60 miles) W of Bari, 174km (108 miles) NE of Naples, 362km (224 miles) SE of Rome

Foggia is the capital of Capitanata, Apulia's northernmost province. A history of tragedy, including a serious earthquake in 1731 and extensive bombing during World War II, has left Foggia with little in the way of attractions, although it's a good base for exploring nearby attractions such as Lucera and Troia. You can also use the city as a base for a day's drive around the Gargano Peninsula. Aside from the ancient cathedral, the city is pleasant but thoroughly modern, with parks and wide boulevards and a decent selection of hotels and restaurants. This is a good place to take care of business -- rent a car, exchange money, mail postcards, or whatever, because it's relatively safe, easy to get around, and centrally located.

The 12th-century Cattedrale della Santa Maria Icona Vetere (tel. 0881-773482) lies off Piazza del Lago. The province's largest cathedral, it was constructed in an unusual Norman and Apulian baroque style. Today, after extensive repairs and expansions, the Duomo is an eclectic mix of styles. The present campanile (bell tower) was built to replace the one destroyed in the 1731 quake. The crypt was built in the Romanesque style, and some of its "excavation" was compliments of Allied bombers in 1943. The cathedral is open daily from 8am to noon and 5 to 8pm; admission is free.

The other notable attraction is the Civic Museum (Museo Civico), Piazza Nigri (tel. 0881-720595), featuring exhibits on Apulia's archaeology and ethnography. It's housed in the remains of the residence of Frederick II and is open daily from 9am to 1pm and also Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday from 5 to 7pm. Admission is 3€ ($4.35).