Otranto is one of the most gorgeous towns in Salento, Italy. It sits on the easternmost edge of Italy’s coast and for this reason, remained one of Italy’s most conquered locations for many centuries. The lingering medieval fortifications are now a modern-day tourist attraction.
Even though I was only there for a few hours, I long to return so I can spend more time exploring its historical monuments (ahem, castles and cathedrals!), wandering the cobblestoned streets and sampling regional cuisine.
Allow the romance and beauty of this place to take hold of your heart, as it did mine. Come and join me on a photo journey of Otranto.
Castello Aragonese, once the heart of the town’s defensive capabilities, now serves as a cultural venue which hosts events and art exhibits.
I think it would be an incredible place to get married! I’m not really sure if they allow for weddings there, but a girl can dream …
The castle is surrounded by a large moat, thankfully now dried up and not stinking up the town as it would have during medieval times.
As you walk through the castle, you’re led down to the sea.
Port of Otranto
Walking along the port area, you’ll see bicyclists riding by and the stunning blue hues of the Adriatic Sea. You can easily imagine yourself spending warmer summer days at the beach …
Recommended reading: This guide to the best beaches in Puglia.
This is one of my favorite shots from my brief time in Otranto.
Streets of Otranto
Walking these cobblestoned streets of the historical center, you almost want to pinch yourself. You’ll wonder if the charm of these streets and this town are real and not something that you invented in your dreams.
Like this, my other favorite shot of a classic Fiat.
One of the more enjoyable things to do in Otranto is visit the weird and offbeat Skull Cathedral. There’s an altar of human skulls and a large tile floor mosaic with unknown meaning.
The Final Word
This place is much more happening during the spring and summer months, when warmer weather brings the locals out to play, as well as the tourists.
I’d love nothing more than to enjoy endless days at the beach, tasty dinners outside with a view of the Adriatic, walking hand in hand with a tall, dark handsome stranger under the stars …
I’m dreaming again! Alas, I’ll be back to Salento in October. Can’t wait to be reunited with Italy, which is seemingly my one true love (as far as countries go).
Good to Know
- Otranto isn’t far away from other towns in Puglia. Read all about my stay in Brindisi and my visit to Monopoli.
- Learn all about the so-called Skull Cathedral, which is said to be the scariest cathedral in the entire world.
- Tours of Salento, including Otranto, can be arranged through Agrifeudi – a new tour operator which offers highly specialized travel experiences throughout the region. These “rooting” experiences as they’ve come to call them will lead you to understand Salento on a deeper and more emotional level, putting you in touch with the history and ancient traditions of the region.
* Disclosure – My time in Salento was complimentary, courtesy of Agrifeudi. Any opinions expressed about my love for Otranto and romantic Italy, are entirely my own.