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Otranto and the surrounding area, 10 places to see holiday

is a taste of the beginning of the film Mine vaganti by Ferzan Özpetek in collaboration with Rai Cinema. Olive groves, dry stone walls, fortified towers: 10 minutes of well-deserved celebrity in a land that has known how to preserve the beauty of all that is genuine.
Welcome to Otranto, one of the most beautiful villages in Italy, the largest city in the east of the Country: the right place to awaken your capacity of wonderto.

Otranto, one of the borghi più belli d`italia


Because a holiday in Otranto?

If you are looking for inspiration, if you want to travel in history, if you are looking for l’authentic, if you are fascinated with different cultures. 

Otranto is still in Europe,  but you are already in the East. The coast on the Adriatic is the Salento, the most pristine, wild and out there. There are caves with a play of colors and reflections, unique.

Otranto is a fortress built on the’water, the historical center, a treasure chest protected by the walls base. On those paving stones have gone through all the: macedonians, greeks, turks, romans, byzantines. And each of them are remaining tracks are still very visible. A few km from the city landed Aeneas, from here went also to St. Paul, Otranto departed the crusade organized by Frederick II. The city drove a very large territory that included part of Puglia, Basilicata and northern Calabria. 

What to see to Otranto and surroundings? What are the countries near Otranto? What are the main attractions?

A few days of vacation on the Adriatic gives you the chance to see some of the most beautiful beaches of Salento, but not only. In the surroundings there are historical villages, postcard views and natural beauty that are absolutely worth to be seen. If you have rented a holiday home in the area of Otranto, and are about to spend your holidays in Salento, here`s the complete guide on what to see, what to do and where to find the most beautiful beaches of Otranto, the unusual destinations and experiences not to be missed in a radius of 20 km from the city

  • BEACHES – the crystal-clear sea of Otranto
  • the beach of alimini otranto

    At the foot of the historic centre: Strange to say, but the beach of Otranto is in the the very centre of the old city, just steps from the’entry in the historic village, restaurants and commercial activities. 

    spiaggia degli Alimini: a lush pine wood, high dunes and the open coast in a semicircle, behind which rise two lakes, the source of the marshy, Alimini grande and Alimini piccolo. Ideal for families, and in the days of great heat, to find refreshment in the green of the pine forest. 

    " Bay of the turks: is among the beaches the most popular  and famous of the costa idruntina a corner of paradise, worthy of the best postcards of exotic, with fine white sand, enriched by a pine forest of the fragrant and lush mediterranean vegetation. In 2009 it was the second most reported of Puglia for the “Places in the heart” of the Do – Fund for the’environment. 

    Baia delle Orte: as well as swimming and walking, you can programmarci diving, underwater fishing and trekking. Between the white tongue Tip Fać and the Cape of Otranto, Baia delle Orte is a mirror d’water-cobalt blue is among the most populated for marine fauna. Ideal for underwater fishing.

  • IL FARO DELLA PALASĆA – Greece has never been so close
  • Lighthouse of palascia in otranto

    Too high on the level of the sea to hear the gulls that skim the hair of the’water. Too low compared to the road surface in order to perceive the noise of the car. Il faro della Palasća, along the cliffs of Otranto, is suspended in an ethereal space of silence. We are in the most eastern point d’Italy, in the Salento region, 72 km from’Albania. 

    The lighthouse, one of the 5 present in the ground d’Otranto, sleep for 150 years on the border, nautical between the Adriatic and the Ionian sea. Before you stood the towers d’lookout built by the Romans. Palascia, today, is the wind, the sea, the scents, the Mediterranean. Under the shadow of thousands have found the answers they sought. It will be the panorama, where photographers, painters and writers find inspiration. It will be here that you learn to listen to the wind. Will that to get there you cross the old cart-roads, roman roads, ancient tracks and sea cliffs. Will that from here, every new beginning. Every day there rises before dawn d’Italy. Our advice: go there in the evening, you will observe the stars from a privileged point of view. Joining the dots, there schiarirete thoughts. 

    HOW to GET there: The lighthouse Palasća is located just outside of Otranto, along the coast road sp.87 Otranto - Porto Badisco. 

  • THE QUARRIES OF BAUXITE – a landscape alien
  • laghetto di bauxite otranto

    We recommend you get there by looking only to the ground during the ride: when you arrive at your destination and you will raise the look, you will see something you have never seen. Cave di bauxite Otranto a true surprise of nature, the palette of colors that do not t’s aspects. C’is a pond emerald green. There are rocks rust red. Bushes and plants from the tone of the intense and brilliant. The feeling that dominates is that of being out of the world. There’s incredible atmosphere of peace. The pond is formed with the infiltration of d’water will follow the abandonment of the quarry;  the outstanding peculiarity of its color is due to the remains of bauxite which still remain today. 

  •  OTRANTO, THE ANCIENT VILLAGE –  the middle Ages, cultures, and esoteric mysteries
  • the historic centre, the castle of otranto

    Can a place be a “messenger of peace”? Yes, the historic center of Otranto, a world cultural heritage recognized from the’Unesco, is. 

    Walk on’the ancient pavement made of living stones means to attend a dialogue between the very different cultures between them. Means to learn that a coexistence between the West and the East is possible. More, that their coexistence is a form of d’art, among the most successful.

    The edges of some of the houses you can see the large spheres of granite, catapulted from the bombards by the saracens in 1480. Lie there from time immemorial, in the memory of’ottoman invasion that struck the people of otranto. Today they are part of the charm of the city. As the relics of the 800 martyrs, the idruntini who sacrificed their lives to defend the city from the’s invasion of the turks. 

    Their remains are now protected in the Cathedral dell’Annunziata of 1088, the biggest church of Puglia, the heart of Otranto and the mysterious theories concerning them. 

    In it, built on the ruins of a roman domus, a village messapico and an early christian temple, living in style Arabic, baroque and romanesque.

    A curiosity? The Cathedral of Otranto is known all over the world, especially for the mosaic that pave l’entire area with the contents of esoteric and messianic not yet interpreted.

    For long stretches of Otranto takes on the traits of a medieval. “Brings the Earth”, along with “sea Gate” the two gates of entry into the city, stand on a bastion that dates back to the’during the napoleonic era. The triangular square, in the centre, however, dates to the Sixteenth century. 

    The time line is present here in every important moment. 

    Then there are shops d’crafts, restaurants overlooking the sea and the local “cool”, populated by young people up to the first lights dell’alba. The most striking are those which, from the ramparts, overlooking the sea, adding a unique panorama and the beauty of an evening among friends.


  • THE CAVE OF POETRY – one of the 10 natural swimming pools, the most beautiful in the world
  • cave of poetry roca vecchia, salento

    Torre dell’s`orso, San Foca, Roca, Sant’Andrea and Torre Specchia five places of untouched beauty. It is not a case that the crystal clear waters of Melendugno hold the title of the Blue Flag, the Green Flag as the resort child-friendly and the Five Sails Legambiente for the quality of the waters and the climate. 

    Torre dell’s Bear is known for its beaches silver, for the sixteenth century coastal tower that gives the name and for two stacks in the sea, erected by nature. According to the legend, two sisters salento saw the sea for the first time in their lives. And the joy was so much that one of the two dived from the cliff, not knowing how to swim. L’another sister, to save her, did the same thing. None of the two did he return to the house and it is in popular memory that the Gods, out of compassion by their sad history, turned in the two rocks that oversee the beach. Along the bay today, there is place for the Lido, Costa d’East, Lido La Source a L’s Bear. 

    Roca  is a magical place to see at least once in your life. It was a thriving messapian city, between the Torre dell’s`orso and San Foca, with a castle and an island. Today, with its cave of Poetry,  is one of the ten natural pools in the world more beautiful. Perhaps because it is entirely the work of nature, who kept it jealously, keeping it away from contamination of the human. But why is it called the Cave of the Poem? Because there was a bath, a princess so beautiful to inspire artists and poets there, thanks to the transparent waters of the cave and the fascination of the girl, could compose verse d’high poetry.  


    Road San Cataldo-Otranto, Roca Vecchia, Melendugno LE


    porto badisco sea otranto

    Fled from the city of Troy to fall in the hands of the enemy, Aeneas, the protagonist of’the Aeneid of Homer, arrived on the adriatic coast. In Porto Badisco, for the’accuracy, , 8 km from Otranto.  But it is l’only legend about this area. The rest is a certainty. 

    It is, for example, the review in the Telegraph, the british newspaper, which l’has been placed among the most beautiful beaches of Puglia. 

    Why visit Porto Badisco? Already just to get there, along the coast road Otranto – Santa Cesarea Terme, you`ll see the breathtaking views. And when you think you already have the heart full of beauty, you are still only half way. Badisco is a’s natural bay with calm and crystal clear waters, embraced by the green. And it’ s one of the rare cases of high coast still intact, with a deep blue sea. The scents of sage and thyme, you  to merge with l’smell of the sea, the depths of which are reminiscent of those tropical, tutt’around grow olive trees and oak trees. 

    And it’ s a regular stop on the routes of trekking and hiking in the. Inspired by photographers and artists, and it is not uncommon to meet someone. Not only. Badisco is also loved by the fans of the story. There is the Deer Cave, renamed l’s Cave of Aeneas, an underground complex, among the most important d’Europe, with inscriptions of the neolithic remained intact.  


  • castro salento

    A coffee in the square opposite the Cathedral – a’ancient byzantine basilica of the  1171 – and then for a walk  in the ancient village for a glass of wine at the foot of the Castle. And it’ s the charm of Castro. Landscapes, passages, white houses, narrow streets, flower - . A historic centre, overlooking the bay from the’high, and Castro Marina, down by the marina, great restaurants where to eat fish and seaside bathing establishments. 

    But the protagonist in Castro she is, the Zinzulusa cave. And it’ s the most famous cave in the region of Salento, is visited by more than 100,000 visitors, all’year. You can say that you have visited without a stage in between the “zinzuli”, the stalactites and stalagmites that decorate l’inside of the cave. The first impact, after a walking path of 150 meters, is an input highly spectacular, one of the major karst features of Apulia. The inner part of the cave is the “Cathedral”, dating back to the Cretaceous period, with the clear waters of the Cocytus, a’area biologically protected. 


  • santa cesarea terme panoramic view

    A rocky outcrop overlooking the sea dominated by the color turquoise and a’s oriental atmosphere. This is the particularity of Santa Cesarea, noble living of Salento, made famous by the sulphurous waters and the mud that make it a destination of well-being for all of Southern d’Italy. Not only. Santa Cesarea develops in height, on levels of vertical different. 

    In the lower part there are the spa sulfur pools and natural bathing facilities. 

    Half-height, sumptuous villas in the moorish style, art nouveau and oriental. Villa Sticchi and Villa Raffaella, for example, the noble residences of the nineteenth century that overlook the sea are a real syncretism of western-style and the exotic. 

    On the upper part of the country, however, within walking distance from the numerous staircases carved into the rock, it is possible to take a’s lovely path immersed in vegetation, with a Belvedere from which to take in in a single glance the whole adriatic coast of Southern Salento, Santa Maria di Leuca. 

    If you like the snorkeling, then, a mandatory stop is the Bay of Porto Miggiano, a stretch of coast sheltered from the winds, with a sandy bottom and transparent, where nature plays with light and color.


  • mesh town in the heart of salento

    For its bustling trade, it`s considered the rich chief town of the Lower Salento. Boutique, shops, fashion, gifts and design overlook among the golden stones of the historic centre, the house of the most aristocratic families and the aristocracy of the area. And just a few metres from the central Piazza Capece, "living room" for residents and visitors that stop in its cafes and its famous pastry shops, stands the monument to Aldo Moro, the Italian statesman who was born in the Mesh. 

    Every year in August there is also meets all of the food & wine of Puglia: the Mercantino del Gusto is one of the oldest showcases food and wine of the Salento region, and attracts thousands of visitors with its dinners and hospitable in the courts, a selection of street food, grilled meats, fresh fish and seasonal vegetables expertly prepared by the best chef in the South of Italy. 

    A cultural itinerary in the city starts from the old town, interesting mix of art construction in the sixteenth century and the baroque, when not in the eighteenth century. Its many palaces and large Churches still bear witness to an artistic past glorious and prosperous.