It seems as though the past few years holiday fads and tourist goals have spoken very clearly. Puglia is a favorite holiday destination. But what exactly makes it one of the most attractive tourist locations? Its warm weather, the sun, its exquisite Mediterranean food, the charm and hospitality of its inhabitants, folk traditions, as well as the heavenly clear waters, and endless white beaches are just a few of the many perks to visiting this region. If you’re already thinking about spending your holiday in the Belpaese, then have to take a look at Italian Traditions’ ranking of the most beautiful beaches of Salento!
The 5 most beautiful beaches of Salento
Punta Prosciutto – Porto Cesareo
Also known as the Swamp of the Count, it is located just south of Torre Colimena, near the homonymous seaside village which marks the border between the province of Lecce and that of Taranto. It is a beautiful beach characterized by white sand, quite solitary with a wild charm. Its shores are found on a coastline of rare natural beauty. It forms part of the Regional Natural Park, which also includes the Old saltpan of Torre Colimena, as well as a Marine Protected Area. Punta Prosciutto is a favorite destination for family tourism for its shallow waters and great visibility, but at the same time it is very much appreciated by young, sporty people. Beach sports are widely practiced in the area. In fact, windsurfing, sailing and diving are among the most popular. The sea is beautiful, turquoise, of crystal clear transparency, with a sandy bottom with sandbars, which is ideal for swimming and bathing.
Porto Selvaggio – Nardò
This wonderful oasis of relax is near the town of Nardo, on the Ionian-Salento coast. Surrounded by a large natural park overlooking the west coast, the bay of Porto Selvaggio is a stop that cannot miss during your holidays in Salento. A pebbled beach with a fascinating cliff, from where you can admire a breathtaking view or take a dip into the turquoise waters of the small bay. Close to the bay you can find a natural complex, just a few meters away from the sea. There’s an exceptional pine-covered forest, ideal place to lie down and enjoy the sounds of nature. It can be reached by foot from the beach as it is just by a twenty minute beautiful walk away. To reach the pine forest park you can start your walk from the entrance near Villa Tafuro. This magic place also offers an ice-cold spring water, which flows out from a giant slab of rock, a step away from the creek. It is easy to reach and easy to try as cryotherapy.
Baia di Torrelapillo – Porto Cesareo
Among the most beautiful beaches of Salento, Torre Lapillo is one of the longest, located near Porto Cesareo. A magnificent place comparable to Caribbean landscapes. An expanse of white sand that extends up to the blue sea, and is also home to a fantastic reef. The bay is about 4 kilometers long, is bordered by two coastal towers: Torre Lapillo and Torre Chianca. The beach is one of the busiest on the Ionian coast due to the endless activities and possibilities that it offers, along with an abundant presence of facilities that it offers. There’s really something for every taste and interest. Torre Lapillo is also well-known for its nightlife. Many beach clubs, in fact, organize events and parties at night. Dancing, drinks and sea all night, following the rhythm of the sleepless Salento summer nightlife.
Le due sorelle – Torre dell’Orso
Among the most beautiful beaches in Puglia, the beach of the Bay of Torre dell’Orso Melendugno is not to be missed. A bay that is just a bit less than a kilometer long with fine beaches, sandbars and clear blue sea, which almost merges with the horizon. The beach is located on a bay dominated by the Bear Tower, a sixteenth-century coastal tower that is now partly destroyed. Contrasting the tower, there are two rocks that the locals call “the two sisters”. In fact, according to legend, these rocks were originally two human beings: two maidens, who one day left the countryside to go to the sea in an attempt to be refreshed from the summer heat. They went to the cliff at Torre dell’Orso. One of the two, was bowled over by the smell of the salt air, and the sea, so she plunged into the cliff, in an act of desperate love. Her cries reached her sister who, in turn, jumped into the water in an attempt to save her. But their fate was sealed. It is said that the gods had great compassion for the two girls and their sad story so as to transform them into two rock stacks that can be admired from the beach.
Grotta della Poesia – Roca Vecchia
Here, natural beauty adds to the charm of the history of this enchanting place. The Grotta della Poesia is located along the Adriatic Coast of Salento, at Roca Vecchia, in the municipality of Melendugno. The name of this spectacular natural pool (meaning poem) has a twofold story: some say comes from “posia“, a Greek-medieval term for a fresh water spring; according to others, it derives from an ancient legend that talks about a princess who used to bathe in the cave, and when the news spread, many poets personally went to the cave to compose verses in honor of the girl (hence the cave’s name referring to poetry). It is a 600 square meter cave, carved out over the years by the force of the eroding sea. Every year the beach is literally invaded not only by the people of Salento, but also by tourists, who have increasingly in recent years, chosen Puglia as their favorite holiday destination.