Top things to do

Top Choice Basilica in Lecce

Basilica di Santa Croce

It seems that hallucinating stonemasons have been at work on the basilica. Sheep, dodos, cherubs and beasties writhe across the facade, a swirling magnificent allegorical feast. Throughout the 16th and 17th centurie…
Top Choice Museum in Lecce

Museo Faggiano

Descend through Lecce's rich historical strata in this fascinating home-turned-museum, where sewerage excavations led to the chance discovery of an archaeological treasure trove. The deepest finds take you all the w…
Top Choice Puglian in Lecce

Trattoria Il Rifugio della Buona Stella

A third-generation family restaurant in a gorgeous Leccese building with sandy stone walls and medieval decor, this wonderful trattoria serves utterly delicious Pugliese food at more-than-reasonable prices. Start of…
Top Choice Trattoria in Lecce

Trattoria le Zie - Cucina Casareccia

Where better to eat cucina casareccia (home cooking) than a place that feels like a private home, with patterned cement floor tiles, paper-strewn desk and a welcoming hostess (Carmela Perrone)? Known locally as simp…
Top Choice Wine Bar in Lecce

Enoteca Mamma Elvira

All you need to know about emerging Salento wine will be imparted by the hip but friendly staff at this cool new joint near the Santa Croce church. Taster glasses are dispatched liberally if you order a few snacks. …
Top Choice Gelato in Lecce

Baldo Gelato

The couple behind Baldo Gelato make the best gelato in Lecce, hands down. The dark chocolate may be the most intensely chocolatey thing you've ever put in your mouth.
Cathedral in Lecce

Cathedral

Giuseppe Zimbalo's 1659 reconstruction of Lecce's original 12th-century cathedral is recognised as being among his finest work. Zimbalo, Lecce's famous 17th-century architect, was also responsible for the thrusting,…
Arts & Crafts in Lecce

Cartapesta Riso

Lecce is famous for its papier-mâché figures, known as cartapesta. It's hard to believe these detailed artworks are made of paper: once the straw skeleton is overlaid with paper, shaped, coloured and burnt with spec…
Church in Lecce

Chiesa dei Santi Nicolò e Cataldo

The beautiful church of Saints Nicolò and Cataldo, located in the monumental cemetery outside the city walls, was built by the Normans in 1180. It got caught up in the city’s baroque frenzy and was revamped in 1716 …
Puglian in Lecce

Alle due Corti

Rosalba de Carlo, a noted repository of Salento gustatory wisdom, is the presiding authority in this authentic-as-it gets Pugliese kitchen. 'The Two Courts' keeps it strictly seasonal and local, dishing up classics …