Cape Leuca

The City of Cape Leuca

Landscapes and natural areas

Cave – Santa Maria di Leuca

The Costa Azahar overlooking the Adriatic Sea is high and rocky, and offers many striking caves carved by centuries of storms. Among the more the Cave of Cazzafre, the Well, Lu Digging, The Mannute, Montelungo and Cave Brigante. Further north it opens the inlet of Ciolo, already in the territory of Gagliano, which owes its name to giolo, a small bird that is still present in this area. Costa de Ponente occurs three others, an important natural cavity called Cave Porcinara which preserves testimonies ranging from the eighth to the second century BC This site it has been over time a first sanctuary messapico and then a sacred place used for worship by the Romans. L ‘main entrance is 16 meters long and leads into a hallway that leads into an atrium with two openings that overlook the sea. In the vicinity lies the Devil’s Cave in which have been found artifacts which attest an attendance in the prehistoric period and then in greek. The peculiar name is due to the gloomy rumble that can be heard inside the cavity, about 30 meters deep. The walls have several Greek and Latin inscriptions with the names of ships, sailors as well as numerous crosses carved dated between the third and first centuries BC

Natural park “Bosco Occhiazzi” – Ruffano

The Natural Park of Bosco Occhiazzi Ruffano extends for about two hectares in the countryside of Ruffano, near the Serra leading to Casarano. The nature reserve preserves flora and fauna typical of the area in an ecosystem survived the extensive type of crops and preserved almost intact to this day. Since 2008 you can visit the park and enjoy nature trails using the specially designed, along nature trails that cover the entire forest formed by the passage of humans and animals. The vegetation of the park includes numerous olive trees and many species typical of the Mediterranean, such as brooms, myrtle, rockrose and wild orchids. You can also observe many species of insects, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals. The area is also equipped with benches and tables intended to stop and rest.

Art and culture

The cave of Venus was discovered in the mid- 60s by prof . Piscopo , in loc . Tufara , about 2 km north-west of Parabita .
It is a natural cavity in which was found a settlement to use both living and worship dating back to the period between the Middle Palaeolithic and the beginning of the Bronze Age , as evidenced by the numerous findings found both inside and around cave.

The Sanctuary of “Santa Maria de Finibus Terrae” Leuca born of an ancient pagan temple dedicated to the goddess Minerva. Tradition has it that the first plant of this sanctuary was commissioned by St. Peter once landed on the adjacent coast. Destroyed and rebuilt several times over the centuries because of the numerous attacks by the Turks, the current structure preserves forms dating back to the eighteenth century. The Basilica has a Latin cross plan with one large nave culminating in a stone pulpit, where there is a dramatization of the collapse of the temple while it appeared St. Peter surmounted by the coat of arms of the bishop Giannelli. Over the main altar is an ancient representation of the Virgin. The transition from pagan cult that Christianity is testified by an inscription at the entrance of the sanctuary. In front of the sanctuary, a high column with a Corinthian capital and topped with a stone cross, it recalls the Jubilee pilgrimage of 1900 and the passage of St. Peter. According to popular tradition the visit to the shrine is the first step to enter Paradise.

The Crypt of the Crucifix or St. Constantine is an underground natural environment transformed into a place of worship by the Byzantines in the eleventh century. In the large underground room Byzantine monks built a crypt which is accessed through an entrance adjacent to the ruins of an ancient Benedictine abbey of the XVth century. The crypt is an important prehistoric site, history and nature. Graffiti of the Paleolithic era and fossils dating back to the Neolithic communities living with important paintings on the cave walls, depicting a crucifix and St. Constantine. The crypt was always a spiritual center and meeting place for the neighboring communities. Towards the end of the last century, however, the devotion and the place went falling fell more and more in a state of abandoned; He harassed by neglect and vandalism was used only sporadically for worship and popular devotion. In recent years, however, the site has returned to be used at various times dell’annno for some celebrations.

The Crypt of the Crucifix is a small underground accommodation used for centuries as a place of worship located about a kilometer from the center of Ugento. Located on the Via Traiana Sallentina, over the centuries it has been a must for the many pilgrims who came at the shrine of Santa Maria de Finibus Terrae in Leuca. The Crypt of the Crucifix is just one of many religious structures of model monachesiomo eastern fate in Salento between the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries; differs from the others in the decoration of the ceiling consists of shields crusaders red and blacks, apotropaic figures such as the griffin and the hydra, as well as symbols of the religious sphere. a cycle of frescoes covering the walls around the perimeter of the hypogeum dating from the thirteenth century. the seventeenth century., consists of icons recalling Byzantine art and the cult greek. Recent restoration work has brought to light a number of tombs formed in the bedrock surrounding the underground, originally at the level of the old decking.

The Madonna of Culture ( an abbreviation of Madonna of Agriculture ) is the patron of Parabita . The birth of the cult comes from a legend in which a farmer plowing the fields with a pair of oxen found a monolith on which was painted the image of the Virgin and Child and at that point it was decided to build a votive chapel . Probably the chapel had to be that of the XIV century , which today is not preserved because nothing in its place was built a first church in the seventeenth century and later the present Basilica of the early twentieth century.


The Radio Museum of Tuglie is headquartered in the restored outbuildings to an underground oil mill of the seventeenth century , that once belonged to the family Marullo . The collection includes radios and scientific instrumentation that the avid researcher Salvatore Giuseppe Micali has collected in 35 years of work as a radio operator Petty Officer of the Navy . In the museum it is kept many rare materials and of great value : the Edison automatic telegraph transmitter (USA 1893) to receivers in Galena , from the receivers of the early twentieth century to those of the seventies . The Museum also has a library and newspaper library specializing in the history and technique of radio

The Museum of Farming , inaugurated in 1982 , is headquartered in the seventeenth century Palazzo Ducale in Tuglie . The collection includes a range of tools and objects that tell the life and work in a period that goes from the seventeenth century to the Second World War . The large collection of testimonies of rural civilization includes the tools of work in the fields , those used by carpenters , the tools of the blacksmith , the blacksmith , the carpenter , alongside everyday objects and children’s toys . The museum also has a small library on local authors and on agricultural practices and also owns a photo library with images that tell the story of Tuglie.

Opened in 2002 , the Museum of Rural Life is headquartered in the historic residence of Palazzo Pasanisi in Torrepaduli . The museum collection includes a series of objects and tools that reconstruct the ancient production practices and daily life of the ancient families of the time.
Some rooms have been restored preserving the original destination of the same, while others have been organized according to the laboratories . Among the objects on display are tools , various tools and even old toys . In recent years the museum has become home to cultural events and shows.

The Museum of Arts and Philosophy of Tiggiano is housed in the Palazzo Serafini – Sauli (now Baron’s Palace ) which also houses the public library . The museum contains numerous items and various tools once used to work in the fields or the production of oil and wine . You can see ancient instruments for measuring weight alongside other tools and vintage images that reconstruct the traditions and the ancient craft practices and working their small town of Salento in between the end of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries

The Museo del Bosco is set within the picturesque Castle of Supersano . Born in 2011 to preserve the historical memory of the forest of Belvedere , an ecosystem of the territory of Salento , which no longer exists . Through exhibits , educational panels and reconstructions is retraced the history of this place , from employment to exploitation by man , from the Paleolithic to the modern age . The Museum is home to the major reconstruction of the ecosystem of the forest of Belvedere , with real plants and graphic reproductions and three-dimensional . Rich is the collection of ethnographic objects and tools related to the ancient crafts that used the forest as a resource .
The top floor of the property is an archaeological collection that includes vases and weapons found in the medieval village that once stood in the village Scorpo , recently the subject of several archaeological investigations.

The Municipal Museum of Specchia is organized into four large rooms that develop three main themes : the peasant , the forest and renewables . In fact, the museum was created to preserve the historical memory of the area and to encourage the use of renewable sources for energy. The Museum of Mirror has four theme areas . Something special is the hall of the Forest of Feelings that offers an evocative reconstruction of the forest Mirror , discovering the wonders of wood . In the Hall of renewable energies , through a series of games and of three-dimensional reconstructions , ranging from the use of wood for energy the windmill of Cardigliano . In the room that houses the testimonies of the civilization peasant and artisan , finally , you can see objects that testify to the strong bond between man and nature.

In the birthplace of Don Tonino Bello , just across from the eighteenth-century Cathedral , the headquarters of the International Marian Museum of Contemporary Art . The museum houses over 350 works of art -themed Marian , made by the most important exponent of Italian and international including: Salvatore Fiume , Ernesto Treccani , Luigi and Alessandro Guerricchio Nastasio . The works possess both the readability of the sacred and the tendency to experimentation of contemporary art.

The museum , named after the patriot and jurist Liborio Romano is located in the residence once belonged to the Romano family and recently restored museum project . The museum has numerous objects from the private collection of Liborio Romano who alongside political activity , which led him to become Minister and Deputy of the Kingdom of Italy , the collector’s passion . Some items come from nearby Vereto , ancient city Messapian subject of numerous archaeological excavations in recent years . The ancient town on whose ruins arose the first settlement of Patù , today is an archaeological site in which you can follow the tour routes specially equipped

The museum , established in 1989 , is housed in a few rooms on the first floor of the Palazzo Ducale . Objects that preserves were donated in part by private citizens of Preston and includes 300 pieces , distributed in themed rooms . The ancient work tools and other objects once belonged to farmers , carpenters , blacksmiths , coopers , cobblers , weavers and millers were were placed in one of four themed rooms : the room of the fire , the water room , the room the earth , the room of time . Many objects reconstitute the ancient practices of oil production under which the institution was included in the national circuit of ” Roads of ” . Among the most valuable items are reported a wooden plow , a loom some sieves for flour and the ancient clock tower of the Mother Church dating from 1879 and recently renovated.

Museum Vito Mele is located in some rooms next to the Sanctuary of Santa Maria de Finibus Terrae . It was inaugurated in 2004 and is dedicated to the sculptor Vito Mele Salento , originally from Preston .
The permanent collection includes more than 120 works created by internationally renowned artists . Next to numerous pieces made by sculptor Salento and his countrymen are flanked works by other artists from the late nineteenth century to the present day . Among the artists stand Medardo Rosso , Leonardo Bistolfi and Vincenzo Moan . Also worth seeing is the section dedicated to contemporary artists including names such as Aldo Calo , Ezekiel Leandro , Bruno May , Ugo Nespolo , and Arnaldo Pomodoro , Ivo Soldini and Eros Pellini.

The municipal art gallery of Ruffano is housed in the eighteenth-century Capuchin convent . The permanent collection includes about 300 works of contemporary art including sculptures, paintings and graphics , some of which are made by renowned artists of the twentieth century which Walter Lazzaro , Goliardo Padua , Ibrahim Kodra , Antonio Pizzolante , John cherish , Salvatore Fiume and Luigi Veronesi . They are often made exhibitions that follow the subjects of existential realism , abstractionism , or kinetic art . The Capuchin Monastery is also a real cultural center for houses inside in addition to the art gallery is also a library where you can consult catalogs and critical texts about the artists in the collection.

Opened in 2008 , the Museum is housed Rush Palustre nineteenth-century Palazzo Villani of Acquarica del Capo . The museum created to enhance the historical art of working marsh bulrush , houses inside numerous educational panels that tell the different phases of reeds according to age-old practice of Acquarica jealously guarded by women , who worked as cestinaie . Among the various processing steps are illustrated collection made exclusively by men , drying and zolfatura , which took place in special cubicles – stoves – where burning coals with sulfur . The plot of the rushes was the final stage of the process and was entrusted to the hands of women thorn .
Not to be missed is the extraordinary Nativity Rush made almost half a century ago by the lady of Sorrows Olympian , preserved in glass cases.

The Museum of Archaeology is located in the ancient Franciscan convent of Santa Maria della Pietà . The monument has been recently restored to house the museum and a modern conference room , obtained from the ancient refectory of the convent . The museum , opened in 2009 , has a rich and innovative exhibition that collects archaeological ugentino of the town over the centuries . The exhibition spaces are distributed in two floors and include , in several rooms and in the cloister , exhibits ranging from prehistory to the Middle Ages accompanied by educational panels . The collections include ceramic material of the Messapian period , some of which are found during the recent excavations . In the museum you can admire the famous Tomb of the Athlete , numerous environmental reconstructions and a rich numismatic collection.

The Museum of the Diocese of Ugento – Santa Maria di Leuca is located in the crypt of the Cathedral , once a burial place for the clergy and for the most prominent citizens . The collection includes a number of objects and works of art including paintings on canvas , paper mache devotional statues , vestments, and missals , scrolls , and antiphonaries carteglorias . Many other precious religious objects , mostly silver , as the chalices, vessels and thrones Eucharistic . The heritage of the Diocesan Museum of Ugento is divided into six rooms , equipped with glass display cases , various supports and panels.