Everybody loves seaside life. Swimming, sunbathing, snorkeling, repeat. But during holidays we also like to take a break and visit some cultural destinations. Today we’re sharing with you our small tour of the cities of Salento we visited.
Let’s start from Otranto and Lecce, the perfect places to have an ice cream or a romantic dinner. We’ll then move to the archeaological site of Melendugno, ideal for all the history lovers.
Otranto is a municipality of Lecce, on the eastern coast of Salento. The old town is surrounded by defensive walls. During the years Otranto has been attacked and occupied by different enemy populations. Today you can still admire the beautiful Castello Aragonese (Aragonese castle), symbol of the occupation at the end of 1.400.
The old town is the most pictoresque and most turistic area. You can walk though the narrow alleys and the colourful shops.
Otranto is right on the sea. Here’s a shot on its port:
Another beautiful city of Salento is Lecce. This is a must for art and culture lovers.
Baroque style enriches the old town. The cathedral, known in Italian as Duomo, is the most famous building. Lecce, as Otranto, shows urban walls. Searches proved that these huge walls, which measure meters heigh, were built with the Romans’ technique “a secco”.
But walls are not the only trace of Roman influence in Lecce. Those who visited Rome will find Lecce’s old town pretty familiar.
In fact, in Saint Oronzo square (piazza Sant’Oronzo) you can see a beautiful Roman amphitheater. Stairs and doors are still visible. It’s amazing!
MELENDUGNO ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE
Another must see place is the archaeological site of Melendugno, not far from Grotta della Poesia.
In this outdoor museum you can see the remains of the old village. You can still admire houses, churches and fortresses right above the sea.