Skip menu

Santa Maria di Leuca

Overview

The tip of the Boot, at the crossroads between East and West

Because of its position at the crossroads between West and East, Santa Maria di Leuca has been a bridge between the two seashores for centuries. Located at the southernmost tip of Salento, it is named after the church, also known as Santa Maria de Finibus Terrae. It stands on the ruins of an ancient temple dedicated to Minerva. On the same promontory is the 47-metre-high lighthouse. The church, fortified in the 18th century to defend it from Saracen attacks, stands out against Apulia’s blue sky. 

A little further down is the town centre, with a seafront lined by Art Nouveau and eclectic, Moorish-style villas. You can admire the blue pagoda roof of Villa Episcopo, the red towers of the neo-Gothic Palazzo Mellacqua, the red and yellow striped dome of Villa Meridiana, the Egyptian-style Villa Mariuccia and the Moorish-style Villa Daniele.

But Leuca’s history is much older and linked to the many caves along the coast, inhabited since Neolithic times. You can take a boat trip to explore the Giants’ cave, Devil’s cave, Crib cave and Dragon’s cave. Leuca’s seabed is a paradise for divers and snorkelling enthusiasts, while visitors who enjoy trekking or mountain biking can enjoy many inland adventures.

Santa Maria di Leuca

73040 Santa Maria di Leuca LE, Italy

Related articles

Cycling tourism
Puglia by bike: between trulli, olive groves and delightful villages

Puglia by bike: between trulli, olive groves and delightful villages

Nature
Santa Maria di Leuca

Santa Maria di Leuca

UNESCO
627087300

Alberobello, the Trulli capital, a fairy tale experience

Art and culture
TRICASE | Puglia

Apulia, pulsing heart of the Mediterranean, cradle of ancient civilisations and with a spectacular sea

Tours and experiences
apulia fuori rotta

Puglia Fuori Rotta, 5 unusual stops for a surprising itinerary

Leisure
Gallipoli, the pearl of the Ionian Sea

Gallipoli, the pearl of the Ionian Sea

Tours and experiences
lecce bike tour cookery courses

The truest soul of Lecce, with bike tours, cooking classes and home-cooked meals

Food and wine
Olive Oil: Apulia's Green Gold

Olive Oil: Apulia's Green Gold

Sea
Spiaggia della Scialara

Scialara beach, the number-one location on the Gargano coast

Tourist destination
Puglia, an authentic wonder also in autumn

Puglia, an authentic wonder also in autumn

Nature
Puglia's coasts: the thousand faces of a sea to fall in love with

Puglia's coasts: the thousand faces of a sea to fall in love with

Cultural cities
Bari

Discovering Bari, an unexpected meeting point between East and West

UNESCO
Castel del Monte: the fortress of mysteries in Andria

Castel del Monte: the fortress of mysteries in Andria

Spirituality
The Sanctuary of Padre Pio

The Sanctuary of Padre Pio

Art and culture
32 locations and 18 exhibitions: PhEST Monopoli enchants with the photography of the future

32 locations and 18 exhibitions: PhEST Monopoli enchants with the photography of the future

Cultural cities
Lecce: the beautiful sun-kissed city among the white stones

Lecce: the beautiful sun-kissed city among the white stones

Cultural cities
184988187

2 days in Lecce: the itinerary

Spirituality
Puglia: along the Via Francigena between castles and basilicas

Puglia: along the Via Francigena between castles and basilicas

Business
brindisi world hub for digital nomads

Brindisi is the world hub for digital nomads in Italy

Art and culture
Digitally immerse yourself in the wonders of Apulia

Digitally immerse yourself in the wonders of Apulia

Ops! An error occurred while sharing your content. Please accept profiling cookies to share the page.