Nestled in the heel of Italy's boot, Lecce is a treasure trove of art, history, and culinary delights. Often dubbed the "Florence of the South," this city boasts abundant Baroque architecture steeped in ancient history.


  1. Pasticciotto: Kickstart your day in Lecce with Pasticciotto, a small pastry filled with creamy custard, a local favorite.
  2. Orecchiette Pasta: Don't leave Lecce without trying Orecchiette, the traditional ear-shaped pasta often served with turnip tops or tomato sauce.
  3. Rustico Leccese: A delicious savory pastry filled with mozzarella, béchamel sauce, and tomatoes.
  4. Negroamaro Wine: Taste the region's flavors by sipping on a glass of Negroamaro, a rich red wine native to the area.
  5. Frisella: A twice-baked bread, usually topped with tomatoes, olive oil, and oregano.


  1. Baroque Architecture: Lecce is renowned for its Baroque architecture, carved from the local Lecce stone, which is soft and malleable, perfect for intricate designs.
  2. Papier-Mâché Art: Lecce has a long history in papier-mâché artistry. Visit a regional workshop to see artists at work and maybe even try your hand at creating something.
  3. Festivals and Events: The city hosts numerous festivals, such as the Feast of Sant'Oronzo, which includes processions, concerts, and traditional events.
  4. Music: The region's traditional music is called "Pizzica," a lively folk music and dance that is said to have curative powers.

Travel Tips

  1. Explore on Foot or Bike: It's ideal to discover Lecce by walking or cycling since most of the city's points of interest are conveniently close to each other.
  2. Learn Basic Italian: Though English is widely understood, a few Italian phrases can go a long way in making connections with the locals.
  3. Visit Markets: For fresh produce and local products, visit the local markets. The Mercato Ortofrutticolo market is an excellent choice.
  4. Avoid Peak Summer: It's advisable to travel in the transitional seasons of spring or autumn to bypass the summer's sweltering temperatures and crowds of tourists.
  5. Take a Cooking Class: Join a traditional cooking class to learn how to prepare local dishes like a true Lecce native.

Interesting Facts

  1. Lecce is known for its limestone called "Pietra Leccese," which has been used for centuries in buildings and sculptures.
  2. Lecce was an important city during Roman times and still houses a Roman amphitheater that could seat more than 25,000 people.
  3. The city is considered the capital of the Salento region, the southernmost part of Puglia.
  4. The traditional tarantella dance, specifically the "Pizzica," is believed to have originated in the Salento region.

Top Places

  1. Piazza del Duomo: One of the most iconic squares in Lecce, home to the Cathedral of Lecce, the Bishop's Palace, and the Bell Tower.
  2. Basilica di Santa Croce: A stunning example of Lecce Baroque architecture, known for its ornate façade.
  3. Roman Amphitheatre: Situated in Sant'Oronzo Square, this ancient amphitheater is a testament to Lecce's Roman history.
  4. Castello Carlo V: A historic castle with impressive battlements, used as a cultural center hosting exhibitions and events.
  5. Porta Napoli: An ancient city gate and one of the symbolic monuments of Lecce, built in the 16th century.
  6. Giardini Pubblici: A lovely public garden, perfect for a stroll or a relaxing break.
  7. Museo Faggiano: A unique private museum where you can explore the layers of history, from the Messapian era to the Middle Ages.

Lecce is a mesmerizing blend of ancient history and vibrant culture. The richness of its architecture, the delectable cuisine, and the warmth of its people make it a destination to be noticed. Whether wandering through the labyrinthine streets, sampling the local cuisine, or immersing yourself in the history surrounding you, Lecce promises an unforgettable Italian experience.