You cannot go much further south in Puglia than Otranto, which is located on the east coast. This most southern area of Puglia is referred to as the Salento peninsula. The Strait of Otranto, connects the Adriatic Sea with the Ionian Sea and separates Italy from Albania.
The old town is set next to the harbor and lined with the little boutiques, restaurants, and gelaterias you see in every town here. Out of all the towns we have seen in Puglia, this was one of my favorites. The old town didn’t match up to that of Lecce or Bari, but the boardwalk overlooking the sea was absolutely stunning. Otranto is known for some of the clearest and clean water, and the shades of turquoise set against the white buildings was stunning. Otranto has a bit of a higher price tag for tourists in comparison with other cities, and you can tell there is a bit more money in the city by how clean it is, with much less graffiti.
We visited the town with our hosts and another workawayer on a bluebird 70 degree day. We took a quick trip to the Cathedral which had some interesting stories to tell. I didn’t happen get a photo of the floors, which were completely mosaic, showing artwork and religious stories. I’m not sure which ones, the brochure was in Italian, sorry. Another sight to see was the walls of skulls and bones of martyrs from hundreds of years ago when the Turks invaded Otranto. Kind of creepy, it didn’t look real, but it was…
I (and the others) had seen enough history for the day so we headed towards a pizzeria (because what else?).The majority of the day was spent sipping on house white and soaking in the sun on the seafront (with a little gelato, of course). If you can’t already tell, this is a recurring theme for our weekends. Yes, my pants still fit. But I do wear a lot of spandex, so it’s debatable.