Add dates
Lecce

Culture & history

Our most recommended Lecce Culture & History

Lecce: Baroque Architecture and Underground Walking Tour

1. Lecce: Baroque Architecture and Underground Walking Tour

The tour starts with a visit to the majestic Santa Croce Church, the jewel in the crown of Lecce’s Baroque architecture. From here, explore the nearby Piazza Sant’Oronzo, the former market square where you can find the Old Town Hall, the Roman Column, and the remains of a huge Roman amphitheater. Continue the tour with a walk through the Corso Vittorio Emanuele, which boasts a stunning Baroque palazzi and the recently restored Sant’Irene Church. Arrive at the breathtaking Piazza Duomo next, one of the most critically praised buildings in Italy. See the Archbishop’s Residence, the Seminary, the Bell Tower, and the cathedral. Finally, visit the underground Jewish Museum and discover the town’s fascinating Jewish history.

Lecce: Walking Tour

2. Lecce: Walking Tour

Your tour begins from Sant'Oronzo square, where you will find a Roman Amphitheater which was first discovered at the beginning of the 20th Century. The itinerary goes on to the historic center, which is rich with churches and old buildings decorated by Baroque Art. During the tour, it will be possible to look at papier-machè artisans at work. This kind of art belongs to Lecce from the 17th Century, when it was conceived to decorate churches, back when the paper was the only material available. It continues to adorn the houses and the churches of this magical city thanks to old masters and young people.

Lecce: City Highlights Biking Tour with Food Tasting

3. Lecce: City Highlights Biking Tour with Food Tasting

Discover the top sights of Lecce by bike on this guided tour. Peddle through the Old Town's characteristic narrow streets as you pass by vestiges of imperial Rome and baroque churches. Savor authentic local flavors during a tasting experience.  Meet your guide at the activity provider's shop and get fitted with a bike. Set off through the streets on a biking adventure through the sights of the historical center. Cruise thorugh the majestic Piazza del Duomo, one of the most peculiar squares in southern Italy. Ride to the monumental entrance to the city, Porta Napoli, and continue to the fascinating Basilica of Santa Croce, which is a stunning example of the artistic development of Lecce Baroque. Ends with a stroll through Piazza Sant'Oronzo where a you can view the Roman Amphitheater. Try local products like homemade ice cream or sausages and cheese. Return to your meeting point at the end of your tour. 

Lecce: Rickshaw Guided Tour

4. Lecce: Rickshaw Guided Tour

Experience a pleasant, multilingual (group) or monolingual (private) tour in the comfort of our modern, environmentally friendly rickshaws with an experienced guide. The tour starts with a visit to the main sights, through the characteristic narrow streets of the historical centre, we will discover the huge Piazza del Duomo, one of the most beautiful squares in Italy. The tour continues by discovering the monumental entrance to the city, Porta Napoli, to continue with the fascinating Basilica of Santa Croce, which reveals the artistic development of the Lecce Baroque. The tour ends by pedalling to Piazza Sant'Oronzo, where among historical buildings and churches we will discover the Roman remains of the Roman amphitheatre. Between history and culture, the inevitable is the discovery of typical flavours, a tasting of the excellences available according to the season. Enjoy a little tasting of a local product during the tour.

Lecce: Sightseeing Tour, the Florence of South Italy

5. Lecce: Sightseeing Tour, the Florence of South Italy

Following a pick-up from Naples Gate, drive to the historic city of Lecce to admire Baroque buildings, whitewashed houses, and more. Your tour of the “Florence of Southern Italy” includes Lecce Cathedral. Originally built in 1144, and completely restored between 1659-70, the addition of a 5-story bell tower and octagonal loggia helped turn it into one of Italy’s most important cathedrals. Continue to the Church of the Theatines, dedicated to St. Irene, and marvel at the expansive façade of different styles. The portal is surmounted by a statue of St. Irene by Mauro Manieri, while the altar of St. Michael the Archangel boasts a copy of an eponymous painting by Guido Reni. Nearby is the Rococo altar of St. Andrew Avellino, and the mid-17th-century altar of St. Orontius by Francesco Antonio Zimbalo. Admire the altar of St. Irene with its canvas by Giuseppe Verrio, and the 9 busts of saints housing historic relics. See the altar of St. Stephen, containing the “Stoning of St. Stephen” by Verrio. Visit the 2nd-century BC Roman Amphitheatre near Piazza Sant'Oronzo. Once able to seat more than 25,000 people, it is now half-buried by monuments built over it throughout the centuries. Go to the column that holds a statue of Lecce’s patron saint, St. Oronzo, given to the city by Brindisi for St. Oronzo’s reputed role in curing Brindisi of the plague. Once one of a pair, it marked the end of the legendary Appian Way, the main road between Rome and southern Italy. Walking through the streets of the old town, visit the Church of Santa Chiara and Roman Theatre.

From Lecce: Ostuni, Alberobello, Polignano Tour

6. From Lecce: Ostuni, Alberobello, Polignano Tour

The first stop of the tour is Ostuni,a picturesque town to be experienced. Known as the "White City," Ostuni boasts a wonderful medieval village rich with alleys and whitewashed houses which recalls an oriental landscape. You will have free time to visit the old town center characterized by alleys, sloping stairs, courtyards, and small squares with whitewashed houses, craft shops, and typical small shops. After Ostuni reach Alberobello, crossing some charming villages located on top of the hills. The landscape is a continuous succession of ancient olive trees and trulli. Visiting beautiful Alberobello is like a journey in a timeless country. You will have free time at your disposal to explore its characteristic historic center, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is integrally made up of Trulli, disticntive white, pyramidal structures that make it unique in the world and represent one of the most extraordinary examples of Italian folk architecture. Particularly striking are the two districts: "Rione Monti" with its local handcrafts shops and "Aia Piccola", where the most ancient Trulli and little museums are situated. After Alberobello, descending towards the Adriatic Sea, reach the beautiful Polignano a Mare, birthplace to the famous Domenico Modugno. Polignano a Mare stands on a cliff falling sheer to the sea. Explore the historic center and the remains of Roman rule. Among the latter, the bridge of the Via Traiana, still viable. Entering the historic center, through a maze of streets, alleys, and squares animated by local shops and restaurants, you find yourself on three terraces overlooking the sea to enjoy a breathtaking view.

Lecce: Dining Experience at a Local's Home

7. Lecce: Dining Experience at a Local's Home

Arrive at the home of your expert host for a memorable private dining experience where you will taste authentic recipes treasured in family cookbooks passed down by real Italian mothers. During an exclusive cooking demonstration, feel the warmth of Italian hospitality as your host shares the secrets of her family cookbook while preparing the dishes right in front of you. Once the end result is ready, sit at an authentic Italian dining table and enjoy your 4-course seasonal menu including a starter, pasta, main course with side dish, and dessert.

Lecce: 2-Hour Guided Tour

8. Lecce: 2-Hour Guided Tour

Meet your friendly guide at Porta Napoli, the arch of Triumph which marks the entrance to the historic city center. After a short meet and greet with your friendly and informative guide, set-off on your 2-hour sightseeing tour and get acquainted with the city of Lecce. Follow your guide from the heart of the city to the baroque Cathedral. On your tour, discover the Roman Amphitheater built between the 1st and 2nd-centuries BC, which in the past could hold about 25,000 spectators. At the end of your tour, you will stop under the column of the Patron of the city, Sant' Oronzo, who would rid the city of the plague. Throughout the course of your tour, visit many of the city's most culturally and historically significant landmarks and learn about Lecce through your knowledgeable guide.

From Lecce: Otranto, S.M. Leuca, Gallipoli & Galatina Tour

9. From Lecce: Otranto, S.M. Leuca, Gallipoli & Galatina Tour

Visit 4 of the most picturesque towns in Salento on your own—Otranto, Santa Maria di Leuca, Gallipoli, and Galatina. Take a scenic route from the Adriatic to the Ionian Sea, between rocky coasts, small bays, and white beaches. Head to your first stop of Otranto, a town in Salento full of history. Every corner highlights the passage of different civilizations, including the Romans, the Byzantines, the Ottomans, and the Aragoneses. Enjoy free time to visit the splendid Cathedral, the Church of Saint Peter in perfect Byzantium style, the Castle, the Towers, the mighty Pelasgi Bastions, and the walls that surrounded the ancient city. Next, reach Santa Maria di Leuca, along the wonderful Adriatic coast, characterized by cliffs overlooking the sea, caves, and bays with a rocky bottom. Along the way, admire Santa Cesarea Terme, Castro Marina, and the Ciolo Fiord. Explore Santa Maria di Leuca, the heel of Italy, where the Ionian Sea meets the Adriatic Sea. From this tip of Puglia, soak in spectacular views of the harbor and the sea, as well as the sanctuary of Santa Maria de Finibus Terrae. Continue along the Ionian coast to Gallipoli. This Greek city can be divided into 2 areas: the new village, where the tourist facilities and modern buildings arise, and the old city. The old city is located on a limestone island connected to the mainland by a 17th-century bridge. During your free time, explore the historic center through a labyrinthine weave of narrow streets. Pass by traditional handicraft shops, impressive churches, and aristocratic palazzi. Also worth seeing are the Baroque Cathedral dedicated to St. Agatha, the Angevine Castle, and the Greek Fountain, one of the oldest fountains in Italy. End the tour with a visit to Galatina, a real gem of art, history, and culture. Step inside the Basilica of Saint Catherine of Alexandria to marvel at the frescoes created by Giotto's disciples. You can also visit the Cathedral of SS. Peter and Paul, and the monuments in the historical center.

From Lecce: Full-Day Salento Tour with Professional Guide

10. From Lecce: Full-Day Salento Tour with Professional Guide

Explore Salento and its picturesque towns on a small group, full-day tour from Lecce, traveling by air-conditioned coach with room for no more than 7 passengers. Following a pick-up from your hotel, drive to Galatina, a real gem of art, history and traditions. Of extraordinary beauty is, in particular, the Basilica of Saint Catherine of Alexandria, second only to the Basilica of Saint Francis in Assisi for the presence of many frescoes inside, which were created by Giotto's disciples. Other monuments to visit include the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul, the ancient "courtyard houses" and the buildings situated in the historical center. Otranto is Italy’s easternmost town and is well-known as “Porta d’Oriente” (literally, “Door to the Orient”). The splendid cathedral, the Church of Saint Peter in perfect Byzantium style, the castle, the towers, the mighty Pelasgi Bastions and the walls that surrounded the whole ancient city make Otranto one of the most interesting cultural destinations in the south of Italy. Santa Maria di Leuca sits on the southernmost tip of the Salentine peninsula, bathed by two seas, the Ionian Sea to the west and the Adriatic Sea to the east. Santa Maria di Leuca is a tourist center famous for its colorful natural landscape that blends in with its majestic architecture. Located on the Japigo promontory is the Basilica of Santa Maria De Finibus Terrae (at the ends of the Earth). From the basilica, you can reach the old port on foot via two ramps of 300 steps each. Gallipoli is considered the pearl of Salento. This Greek city can be divided into two areas: the old city and the new village, where the tourist facilities and modern buildings arise. The old part of the city is located on a limestone island connected to the mainland by a 17th-century bridge. It is surrounded by defensive walls built mainly in the 14th-century. It is characterized by a labyrinthine weave of narrow streets, home to traditional shops of local handicrafts, numerous impressive Baroque churches and aristocratic palazzi. Also worth seeing are the cathedrals dedicated to St. Agatha, one of the best examples of the Baroque in Salento, the Angevine Castle built in the 13th-century and the Greek Fountain, one of the oldest fountains in Italy.

Frequently asked questions about Lecce Culture & History

What are other things to do than Culture & History that are worth visiting in Lecce?

Other Sightseeing Options in Lecce

Want to discover all there is to do in Lecce? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Lecce

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 116 reviews

We went out with 9 people, first your bike was properly adjusted and we got water and then we went on the road. It was a nice international group and the route was manageable despite the heat, with regular stops at the sights and a lot of explanation about everything. Our guide, Antonio, is a walking/cycling history book, learned a lot again. Big thumbs up!

Beautiful city. Our guide, Diletta, was courteous, professional, funny and super thorough. A tour that allowed us to get to know Lecce and its main characteristics, thus giving us the opportunity to better understand what we saw individually in the afternoon, walking around the city. Thanks Diletta!

Wonderful day in Lecce, thanks also to the guidance of Prof. Luigi Bianco who with his professionalism allowed us to discover a splendid Lecce with its facets and details that we would not have been able to grasp on our own. Recommended visit

We absolutely loved our bike tour of Lecce. We did it as family with an 8 year old. Our guide Davide was very knowledgeable, kind and accommodating. Thank you!

Was really a great tour, seen a lot well explained and very entertaining. Regardless of the tour, very nice conversations with our guide.