Salento means clear sea, breathtaking coast, ancient architecture and food and wine. It would take days to discover the charm of each village and visit each cove on the sea. What? Are you only here for a weekend? Don’t worry. We have summed up for you the most important things worth seeing in Salento in two days. A mini tour that will allow you to “taste” the beauties of the area.
DAY 1 – the Adriatic coast
Let’s start from Otranto, a jewel set on the Adriatic at about 40 km south of Lecce. Spend the morning on the beach, having a swim, enjoying the sun and relax yourself in order to go home more tanned! You can stop for lunch in one of the many restaurants in the old town and take the opportunity to take a tour in the characteristic alleys of the town. Do not miss a visit to the Cathedral, famous for the chapel with the skulls of the 800 martyrs who died resisting the Turkish invasion in 1480 and for the floor mosaic dating back to the mid-twelfth century.
In the afternoon, take advantage of the cooler hours of the day, driving along the whole coast road that connects Otranto to Leuca. You will have the opportunity to admire one of the most beautiful views of the Salento coast, a sort of “balcony” overlooking the sea. Stop where you like more!
Drive up to Leuca, our last stop for today. You’ll reach Santa Maria di Leuca in the evening: here enjoy an excellent dinner and a walk in the small town, where the lighthouse will be waiting for you, which stands on the promontory of one of the most famous Marian sanctuaries in Puglia, that of the Madonna De Finibus Terrae.
DAY 2 – the Ionian coast and Lecce
Leave again from Leuca, taking the coastal road that goes up from the Ionian side and head towards Gallipoli. When you’ll reach the “Città Bella”, stop immediately at the sea. We recommend the beach of Purità or Baia Verde. After spending a handful of hours sunbathing, take a tour to discover the “Pearl of the Ionian”, stopping at the Angevin Castle, the Cathedral of Sant’Agata and the Greek Fountain. Stop for lunch in one of the many restaurants in the historic center. When the sun goes down, leave for Lecce, the last stop of your weekend.
If you choose not to opt for the panoramic road, you will reach the Salento capital in half an hour by car. Here you will have plenty of time to admire Lecce from an architectural point of view and to enjoy a regenerating walk in the old town. You will be welcomed by the sumptuousness of the Baroque style that permeates the churches and monuments of the city.
Move from Piazza Sant’Oronzo towards the Basilica of Santa Croce, and then again on Corso Vittorio Emanuele II towards the Duomo, passing through the numerous and enchanting churches (San Matteo, Sant’Irene, etc.). Stop in one of the many restaurants in the old town and enjoy good wine and a dinner based on typical products, letting yourself be cheered by the colors of the “Lecce nightlife”.
If you don’t know where to sleep in Salento, here you will find some useful advice.
holiday houses -> www.casesalento.com
Holiday luxury villas -> www.villesalento.it
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