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Brindisi

Like all ports, Brindisi has its seamy side, but it's also surprisingly slow paced and balmy, particularly along the palm-lined Corso Garibaldi, which links the port to the train station, and the promenade stretching along the interesting lungomare (seafront).

The town was the end of the ancient Roman road Via Appia, down whose length trudged weary legionnaires and pilgrims, crusaders and traders, all heading to Greece and the Near East. These days little has changed except that Brindisi's pilgrims are now sun-seekers rather than soul-seekers.

Highlights of a sojourn in the city include the Tempio di San Giovanni al Sepolcro, (a fascinating 12th-century Norman church), and Brindisi's provincial archaeological museum with a treasure trove of Hellenistic Greek bronze sculptures.

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