Secret Italy. Part 3. The delights of Lecce

Luxury Travel Tips

Photo by Paolo Margari /

So I finish today trip to Puglia. As promised, a few words about Lecce.

In general, it can be said that a rather strange, if not surprising, story happened to Lecce. The fact is that this truly lovely place is known very, very little to the general traveling public. Meanwhile, among the Italians, Lecce is referred to only as “midday Florence.” The explanation for this nickname is not difficult to find: the town consists mainly of honey-colored houses and characteristic baroque architecture.

A beautiful and prosperous city (with a population of about 90,000), Lecce prides itself on its elegant appearance and is famous in Italy for its courts and debates. But the main thing here, of course, is architecture. This, one might say, is a small provincial museum, the exhibits of which may well compete with the best exhibits in Rome and Florence.

Photo by Paolo Margari /

Where to stay? Definitely a hotel PATRIA PALACE (to be fair, it should be said right away that this is the only acceptable place to stay in Lecce).

Nice hotel with excellent service. Of course, its rooms and activities are less luxurious than most of the hotels I usually write about in LuxuryTravelBlog. But this is not the main thing in this case.

In addition to the enticing little bar, the hotel has a fine restaurant and a cozy rooftop terrace.

The windows of the rooms overlook a small square and offer extraordinary views of the exquisite baroque church of Santa Croce, beautifully illuminated in the evenings. Book No. 201 or 202. These are the best views from the window. And then immediately on the road.

It is best to get acquainted with Lecce in the early evening, when the heat of the day subsides and it becomes more comfortable to walk along the streets. And you need to walk – first of all, in order to look at the amusing urban architecture. The Church of Santa Croce was predominantly built in the 16th century and its façade is covered with carved flowers, plants, animals and saints.

Photo by Paolo Margari /

After that, you will probably want to stay longer, stay longer in the atmosphere of this exquisite city. Then I advise you to have a cup of coffee in one of the cafes in Piazza Sant’Oronzo (this is the heart of the city and this is where the legendary ancient Roman amphitheater is located).

By Paolo Margari /

Lecce has many great restaurants. Alle Due Corti (Corte dei Giugni 1) specializes in fine local cuisine such as ciceri e tria (boiled and fried pasta with peas) and tajeddha (layers of potatoes, rice and mussels). At Osteria degli Spiriti (Via Cesare Battisti 4), be sure to try spaghetti di faro (made from “spelt”, old barley grains that the Roman legions ate) with eggplant, tomatoes and ricotta. After that, order a steak, it is possible with a turnip or bean puree – this is a local popular dish.

And now enjoy the views of Lecce in the photographs (of course, this is an embellishing hdr technique, but the spirit is conveyed quite accurately). And then go there. Next time I’ll talk about my favorite hotel near Rome, and that’s it for now, let’s finish about Italy.

by Cinzia A. Rizzo / fataetoile /

by NaturaLite/

By Paolo Margari /

By Paolo Margari /

By Paolo Margari /

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