Stunning Italian beach life
The main draw for Gallipoli tourism is, of course, the selection of beaches. With beautiful blue skies a daily fixture, you’re guaranteed a relaxed day on the shore. Blue Bay Beach, where sunsets are golden and glorious, more than lives up to its name thanks to its gorgeous blue sea. Deck chairs and parasols are available for hire, while waterfront diners and wine bars let you enjoy the seaside at the peak of sophistication.
On the other hand, Gallipoli holidays are also well known for their fantastic beach parties. Those are to be found all throughout summer at Samsara Beach, where the biggest concerts in all of Puglia are hosted on these stunning shores. This is an active beach rich with watersports and music, and even in the quieter winter months it’s home to a New Year’s Eve party that’s among the biggest in Italy.
Gallipoli is a distinctive town, and part of what makes that so is its rich tapestry of local landmarks. These make for a superb tour when you’re done enjoying the Gallipoli beach life.
Many of these landmarks date back centuries, such as the Castle of Gallipoli. This is a surprisingly squat structure by the waterfront, built from rugged tan-coloured bricks with four stumpy yet mighty towers surrounding its centre.
Elsewhere, the intricately sculpted imagery on the Greek Fountain that connects the old town with the newer districts of Gallipoli is a beautiful work of art. Yet perhaps most interestingly, it has been dismantled and precisely reconstructed and relocated several times across the city’s life as it’s grown.
Churches are laced throughout the city as well, although the most famous is the Cathedral Sant’Agata. While the interior of this vast building is gorgeously put together, the real claim to fame this monument enjoys is its fabulous facade.
The history, culture and gorgeous beaches of Gallipoli are one thing, but the food and drink scene is quite another. Put simply, you’re looking at some of the best, most flavoursome and most affordable meals in Puglia, if not all of Italy. With the Italian legacy of excellent cuisine widely known, that’s no small feat.
Luckily, it’s not all exclusivity and fancy dining in Gallipoli, as many restaurants specialise in homegrown touches and family recipes. The biggest question you have to ask yourself is whether you prefer a sea view with dinner or not. If you do, La Risacca is a gorgeous venue well worth your time. It’s at the furthest western point of the waterfront, making dining by sunset a joy, and meals on the terrace under heated shades equally pleasing. The water laps close by as you tuck into seafood risottos and rich ravioli.
Further inland in the narrow streets of the city proper, you have venues like Trattoria La Fontanelle. Russet red walls and dark panelling make for some magnificent inner city surroundings, and you’ll likely notice that your fellow seafood and pasta diners here are mostly locals. This restaurant has still remained off many a holidaymaker’s radar, so use that to your advantage for some authentic cuisine.
Doing nightlife differently
You won’t find a vast range of nightclubs in Gallipoli, but what you will find is effortless Italian chic and some of the best wines you’ve ever tasted. Blanc is a fantastic example of that, with its arched interior and wide open spaces dotted with vintage and exotic furniture. It craftily advertises the furniture shop next door that opens during the day.
Blucafe Bar Gallipoli is a more modern take on the Italian wine bar, tucked downtown with sleek white finishes throughout. The cocktails and live music acts here make for a fantastically slick night out among stylish company.