Salento area and Taranto

Salento is the Southern part of Puglia and is a unique land embraced between the Ionian and Adriatic sea. Here we have miles of coastline characterized by a wide variety of landscapes and architectonical elements such as wonderful white sandy beaches, cliffs, natural areas, middle age watchtowers and castles facing the sea but also picturesque towns and harbors such as Gallipoli, Otranto and Santa Maria di Leuca. The inland of this area is famous for its majestic baroque style Churches and palazzi which were built during the 17th-18th century. The very heart of Apulian Baroque is the very elegant city of Lecce with its baroque palaces and churches constructed from warmly colored Lecce stone. Another attraction of Salento area is the town of Galatina where you can taste the famous local delicacy “pasticciotto” or get to know the local rural culture. This territory is very rich of history as well. Here we find two of the most important historical places of all of Puglia, the roman city of Brindisi and the greek city of Taranto with the most important archaeological national museum of Puglia.

Lecce

Lecce the capital of Apulia baroque style

lecce-anfiteatro-romanoOn a guided tour, you will see elegant baroque palaces and churches constructed from warmly colored Lecce stone. These beautiful buildings surround the magnificent ruins of what was once a Roman city called Lupiae.

Otranto

Otranto the most eastern city of Italy

otranto-01Otranto is the door to the East. For centuries, it was an outpost of the Byzantine Empire on Apulian soil, as well as the cultural and artistic center of the entire region. Otranto is brightened by the sun reflecting off the turquoise blue water of its harbor onto the bare rocks upon which this small city is built. Be prepared to be stunned by the imposing mosaic floor

Taranto

Taranto the City of Two Seas

taranto-mar-piccoloThis guided tour introduces you to the capital of Magna Graecia, the area of Italy colonized in ancient times by Greece. We will walk through the narrow streets of what once used to be the ancient acropolis of Taras, reaching the heart of the old town, which is dominated by a fascinating 15th Century Aragonese castle. There, we will discover the unexpected beauty of the Cathedral of San Cataldo, the patron saint of the city.
We will visit the most important archaeological museum of Puglia, known for its sophisticated and important collection of gold jewelry of the Magna Graecia age.

Galatina

Galatina: art, pasticciotto and popular traditions

galatinia-cattedrale-santa-caterina-01This charming town with Greek roots is situated a few kilometers from the city of Lecce. We will visit a majestic baroque Cathedral dedicated to Saints Peter and Paul. We will visit the famous pastry shop Ascalone to taste delicious “pasticciotto,” a crusty pastry filled with custard and black cherry, invented in Galatina in 1745.
During our visit, we will learn in depth about the popular phenomenon of the “pizzica,” a local tarantella folk music that is combined with old dancing rituals. In this corner of Italy, we can still find living evidence of an almost extinct rural culture. The last stop on our visit will be the main attraction of the city, the Basilica of Santa Caterina d’Alessandria, built in the late fourteenth century by the most powerful feudal family of the kingdom of Naples, the Orsini del Balzo. The basilica is known for one of the most stunning pictorial cycles of medieval frescoes and

Gallipoli

Gallipoli, the pearl of the ionian cost

gallipoli-01Gallipoli is an enchanting coastal town rich in history because of its Greek roots and its wonderful Baroque and Renaissance buildings. We will walk through the alleys of the old town, which connected to the mainland by a seventeenth-century bridge. We will admire the courts and palazzi of what had been one of the richest cities in the south of Italy in the sixteenth century. The splendid cathedral dedicated to Santa Agata, hosting over 80  canvases painted by the most talented masters of the period, is considered one of the most beautiful in all the Salento peninsula. The city is known for its traditional underground olive oil mills that we will visit.

Brindisi

Brindisi,the ancient roman city “Brundisium”

brindisi-palazzo-granafei-nervegnaThe most important Roman town in Puglia, the old “Brundisium” was connected to Rome through the ancient Via Appia—the Appian Way. Brindisi was for hundreds of years the bridge to the East and the crossroads of merchants, crusaders, sailors and several religious orders, including the mysterious Templar Knights, from all over Europe.
We will admire the Roman column with its majestic capital, which once symbolized the end point of the Via Appia and nowadays is the symbol of the city. After that, we will head to Brindisi’s magnificent cathedral, where in the thirteenth century the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II married Yolande of Brienne, heiress to the Kingdom of Jerusalem. Another highlight of the visit will be the Temple of St. John at the Tomb and then the Renaissance Palace Granafei-Nervegna.

Santa Maria di Leuca

Santa Maria di Leuca

santa-maria-di-leuca-01Santa Maria di Leuca is truly the heel of Italy, the place where the Ionian Sea meets the Adriatic Sea. From this tip of Puglia will admire spectacular views of the harbor and the sea, as well as the sanctuary of Santa Maria de Finibus Terrae. If interested, it’s possible to arrange for a small boat trip along the coast.

Lecce the capital of Apulia baroque style

On a guided tour, you will see elegant baroque palaces and churches constructed from warmly colored Lecce stone. These beautiful buildings surround the magnificent ruins of what was once a Roman city called Lupiae.

Otranto the most eastern city of Italy

Otranto is the door to the East. For centuries, it was an outpost of the Byzantine Empire on Apulian soil, as well as the cultural and artistic center of the entire region. Otranto is brightened by the sun reflecting off the turquoise blue water of its harbor onto the bare rocks upon which this small city is built. Be prepared to be stunned by the imposing mosaic floor

Taranto the City of Two Seas

This guided tour introduces you to the capital of Magna Graecia, the area of Italy colonized in ancient times by Greece. We will walk through the narrow streets of what once used to be the ancient acropolis of Taras, reaching the heart of the old town, which is dominated by a fascinating 15th Century Aragonese castle. There, we will discover the unexpected beauty of the Cathedral of San Cataldo, the patron saint of the city.
We will visit the most important archaeological museum of Puglia, known for its sophisticated and important collection of gold jewelry of the Magna Graecia age.

Galatina: art, pasticciotto and popular traditions

This charming town with Greek roots is situated a few kilometers from the city of Lecce. We will visit a majestic baroque Cathedral dedicated to Saints Peter and Paul. We will visit the famous pastry shop Ascalone to taste delicious “pasticciotto,” a crusty pastry filled with custard and black cherry, invented in Galatina in 1745.
During our visit, we will learn in depth about the popular phenomenon of the “pizzica,” a local tarantella folk music that is combined with old dancing rituals. In this corner of Italy, we can still find living evidence of an almost extinct rural culture. The last stop on our visit will be the main attraction of the city, the Basilica of Santa Caterina d’Alessandria, built in the late fourteenth century by the most powerful feudal family of the kingdom of Naples, the Orsini del Balzo. The basilica is known for one of the most stunning pictorial cycles of medieval frescoes and paintings.

Gallipoli, the pearl of the ionian coast

Gallipoli is an enchanting coastal town rich in history because of its Greek roots and its wonderful Baroque and Renaissance buildings. We will walk through the alleys of the old town, which connected to the mainland by a seventeenth-century bridge. We will admire the courts and palazzi of what had been one of the richest cities in the south of Italy in the sixteenth century. The splendid cathedral dedicated to Santa Agata, hosting over 80  canvases painted by the most talented masters of the period, is considered one of the most beautiful in all the Salento peninsula. The city is known for its traditional underground olive oil mills that we will visit.

Brindisi,the ancient roman city “Brundisium”

The most important Roman town in Puglia, the old “Brundisium” was connected to Rome through the ancient Via Appia—the Appian Way. Brindisi was for hundreds of years the bridge to the East and the crossroads of merchants, crusaders, sailors and several religious orders, including the mysterious Templar Knights, from all over Europe.
We will admire the Roman column with its majestic capital, which once symbolized the end point of the Via Appia and nowadays is the symbol of the city. After that, we will head to Brindisi’s magnificent cathedral, where in the thirteenth century the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II married Yolande of Brienne, heiress to the Kingdom of Jerusalem. Another highlight of the visit will be the Temple of St. John at the Tomb and then the Renaissance Palace Granafei-Nervegna.

Santa Maria di Leuca

Santa Maria di Leuca is truly the heel of Italy, the place where the Ionian Sea meets the Adriatic Sea. From this tip of Puglia will admire spectacular views of the harbor and the sea, as well as the sanctuary of Santa Maria de Finibus Terrae. If interested, it’s possible to arrange for a small boat trip along the coast.