Road trip back to Puglia

The big swim is over so it’s back in the car to cross back to Puglia. 

The drive along the coast was lovely. The water is such a beautiful blue. 

So Thursday is an observation day. 

How Italians drive is one observation I could go on about for ever: but just a few ……

They love speed…… It’s nothing to do 120 in an 80 zone

They overtake whenever they want. Don’t worry about lines crossed, safety, another car coming in opposite direction. They just assume they can poke back into the line of traffic and everyone will be happy. 

They always drive with one arm dangling out of the window. Perhaps they don’t like air con as the window is open for the dangle. 

The roads here are lined with oleander bushes. Pink and white and they look beautiful. 

To finish our drive to Lecce we saw the funniest thing. We’re driving along doing about 100 and a car whooped by doing at least 130, and as it passed us we both gasped and laughed. It was a hearse, and the back door had opened up so you could see the coffin inside. It was a very nice brown teak and we thought it would come flying out at any moment. 

About 500 metres down the road the driver must have realised and pulled over.  Two mins later the same car went past at 140 this time the back lift up door was closed. May they RIP!

This is not a 2 lane road. It is someone overtaking with a truck coming towards him! 
We arrived in Lecce around 3.30 and I had messaged Antonio. Yes another Antonio. This one is the landlord of our air BnB. It’s great. Typical Italian apartment. A little door on to our Vico  (small street) with a sitting room, larger bedroom kitchen and bathroom. In quiet, but in the old city, with real neighbours around us. 

It will be perfect. We had a siesta for a short while but I gave up and went out walking by myself to get a feel for the city as siesta was finishing and all the local businesses were opening. 

It’s a lovely Baroque town sometimes known as the ‘Rome of the South’ or ‘Florence of the Baroque’. But it dates back to old Roman times and has a theatre and amphitheatre – but the period which led to town’s current fame was the 17th century. A period of prosperity led to grand developments and the wholesale construction of palaces and churches. These buildings adapted the fashionable Baroque style to the soft local stone, with decorations and cherubs extravagantly covering facades and doorways. This local style is known as barocco Leccese (‘Lecce Baroque’). And it’s beautiful. 

We walked our own style of Passeggiata, had an Appertivo and went to a local restaurant for some home cooking. 

We didn’t expect horse to be on the menu but it was, and we managed to avoid it. I had vegetables with grilled chicken and Steve had baked pasta then sausages local style. 

Naturally we finished with a gelato and limoncello. 


4 thoughts on “Road trip back to Puglia

  1. Hi Fran,
    Mark and I love reading your blog. Just out of interest, did you catch a ferry across from Italy to Sicily and back? We’re doing a similar trip next year and were curious re your mode of transport. Take care and have fun xx


  2. Driving in Italy was one of the most terrifying things I have ever done, particularly on the motorways. I don’t mind being on the other side of the road but having someone appear from nowhere and be on your rear bumper was too much for me!


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