We discovered the Salento coast on a trip to Gallipoli in 2013. We drove along the coast from Porto Cesario and were struck by the beautiful, sandy beaches and the clear, blue sea. We spent the afternoon at Lido Conchiglie, it was in early July and the public beaches weren’t that crowded, just families enjoying the soft white sand and the wonderful warm sea. We loved Gallipoli’s grand, crumbling palazzi, and we heard that a number of the towns, just inland, had baroque centro storico. We thought; what better way to spend your time, days on the beach and evenings, strolling through the faded grandure of a historic, Salentese town.
We found that town. Nardò is just 15 minutes drive from Lido Conchiglie, 20 minutes from the Baia Verde and an easy drive to all the beaches of the southern Salento. It is also a lively town, day and night. At night the grand baroque Piazza Salandra is the centre of the passeggiata, and the bars and restaurants of the old town are full of locals, swelled, but never outnumbered, by tourists.
Nardò is a cosmopolitan town, with a sophisticated feel, and great local food and wine. There are plenty of resturants and bars in the old town, and four wineries making Nardo DOC red, white, and rose from the local vineyards. We think Nardò is a great place to relax and enjoy the warmth of the climate and the people of this wonderful part of Italy. And if that’s not enough, Lecce and Gallipoli are only 20 minutes drive away….