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Beaches and Lidos
With more than 700km of coastline along the beaches in Puglia which are found along the Adriatic and Ionian seas Puglia there is no shortage of beautiful beaches to visit, from tiny coves to large expanses of gently sloping sand, backed by dunes or pines and olive trees to commercialised areas with everything available from loungers, bars, restaurants through to water sports.
The choice is yours, drive down to the nearest local beach or travel a few miles up the road for that hidden gem where you might be the only person. Remember that unlike Britain, there are many private beaches (lidos) in Puglia that offer covered parking, sun loungers, umbrellas, restaurants, bars, etc. for a small fee. However as much of Puglia's beaches are not commercialised there are many quiet beaches to be discovered.
The sea temperature is generally warm and can reach up to 26 degrees in August but is still over 20 degrees in October.
Be aware that beaches can be very crowded at weekends, particularly on Sundays
Polignano a Mare a small seaside town spead across the peaks of steep limeston cliffs offers spectacular views over the Adriatic. Typically the Medieval Centro Storico of is criss crossed wiith a network of narrow streets and white washed houses that lead to terraces from which this stunning town and the seaside can be appreciated.
There are many boat trips and charters available from which you can admire the jagged coastline, sail into and explore or swim in one of the grottos carved out into the cliffs.
Polignano is not crowded with tourists and, for its size, has a lot of inviting restaurants. For a memorable experience eat at Grotta Pallazzse, located in a cave with views out to the sea.
Torre Canne is popular with locals and is characterised by the two cold natural spas. Along the stretch of beach there are a number of lidos where you can park (for a small fee) and have access to a private beach where, along with sun loungers and umbrellas, you will normally find showers, toilets, refreshment bar, covered parking and BBQ / picnic areas.
Along the promenade there are some very good seafood restaurants and ice crean parlours. Worth trying is Al Buco, a good mid priced restaurant, and Taverna Da Santos for Greek type dishes.
Lido Bizzarro is at the Blue Flag beach of Torre Canne . It is a private lido and offers all the facilities expected from a good lido: car parking, sun loungers and umbrellas, table service restaurant, bar/cafe, bathrooms, clean beaches and lifeguards. The staff also speak English, French and German.
I Laghi Alimini are 2 interconnected lakes forming an Oasi Naturale just north of Otranto. Home to a wide range of flora and fauna and a popular stopping-off point for numerous species of migratory birds, including black and white herons and flamingos, it is a popular place with nature lovers. Through a process of erosion, the larger lake is connected to the sea and a stretch of beaches accessible only on foot.
Punto Palascia (also known as Capo d'Otranto), just to the south of Otranto, is Italy's easternmost point, whose rocky shores and cliffs, stunning seaviews, lighthouse and unspoilt landscape make it a great spot for coastal walking.
Porto Badisco, just to the south of Punto Palascia, is a rocky inlet giving way to a slip of sandy beach and cavernous grottoes. Legend has it that Porto Badisco was where Aeneas first set foot on Italian soil on arrival from Carthage.
Lido Bizzarro is a private lido where for a small fee you can leave your car under a shaded area away from the heat of the sun and spend the day on the private section of the Blue Flag beach of Torre Canne. The facilities are clean changing rooms, showers, toilets, bar, restaurant and small play area. It is wheelchair accesible and has a life guard on hand.
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