Best things to do in Lecce, a stunning city in Puglia, Italy

Visiting Puglia, italy? These are the Best things to do in lecce!

Lecce was the first city we headed to during our road trip through Puglia. Upon arrival, we picked up our car at Brindisi airport and off we went! After about 1,5 hours driving, we arrived in Lecce, where we parked our car at a spot where we were able to park for free (Via Giuseppe Petraglione). Following, we walked towards the city to check in at Balbo Suits & Apartments. After we checked in and changed our clothes, we left immediately to start exploring! This travel blog provides you with an overview of the best things to do in Lecce, one of the most stunning cities in Puglia. 

Looking for tips on the Best Bars and Restaurants in Lecce? Then skip to the guide on my favourite bars and restaurants in Lecce here.
Alternatively, if you seek the Best Hotels and Apartments to stay in Lecce? Skip here to the end of this article.

1 || Visit the main square Piazza del duomo and the Cattedrale dell’Assunzione della Virgine

As in every big city, the main square is a place you have to see. Also, we were straight away surrounded by amazing buildings on the square as the first place we visited in Lecce.

Piazza del Duomo, Cattedrale dell’Assunzione della Virgine in Lecce, Puglia
Piazza del Duomo, Puglia, Italy - What to do in Lecce

2 || Piazza Sant'Oronzo

Piazza Sant’Oronzo is another main square in Lecce. In my opinion, this square is one of the cutest squares in town. From the square, it is easy to explore the old centre and the Roman Amphitheater. Also, at the square, you can find Caffe Cittadino, a cute cafe that opens at 8 am and is the perfect place to watch the city wake up.

3 || LECCE Roman amphitheater

The Roman Amphitheater is a place we were nearby for many times. However, we only realized on the final day, that we hadn’t seen this sight. Although I must admit, I’m not the biggest fan of places like this. In brief, if you are into history, you should have a look (and have a quick peek anyway). 

Roman Amphitheater, Lecce, Puglia, Italy
Roman Amphitheater, Lecce, Puglia, Italy

4 || EXPLORE the little alleys of LECCE early in the morning

I’m a morning person. However, it is worth waking up early when in Lecce, even when you’re not. You have the prettiest light shining through the alleys and streets are empty (we were there in COVID times, which did help of course). 

What to do in Lecce, Puglia, Italy
What to do in Lecce, Puglia, Italy
What to do in Lecce, Puglia, Italy
What to do in Lecce, Puglia, Italy

5 || Visit the Basilica di Santa Croce and Via Umberto I

I liked this area of the city best. When walking from the city centre to Via Umberto I – the street with several great wine and cocktail bars – you come past the Basilica di Santa Croce, also referred to as the Lecce Cathedral. In the evening, locals are hanging out on the stairs, which brings a great vibe to the cathedral and surrounding streets. 

Basilica di Santa Croce, Lecce, Italy

6 || Visit lecce's various churches

Lecce has several churches that are breathtaking, even just from the outside. When strolling through the city, chances are big you run into these. However, below I listed my three favourites for reference:

  1. Église Santa Chiara de Lecce
  2. Chiesa di San Matteo
  3. Chiesa di Sant’Anna
Église Santa Chiara de Lecce, Italy
Chiesa di San Matteo, What to do in Lecce
Chiesa di Sant'Anna, Lecce, Italy

7 || Search for photo opportunities

The city was so much more picturesque than I expected before visiting. Starting from the sights and churches to catching the early morning light for stunning pictures. In summary, I loved strolling around here. 

What to do in Lecce, Puglia, Italy
What to do in Lecce, Puglia, Italy
What to do in Lecce, Puglia, Italy
What to do in Lecce, Puglia, Italy

7 || Eat, drink and indulge

I loved the food and bar culture in Lecce, with plenty of cocktail, beer, and wine bars. Next to that, you can enjoy some great Italian food here. Certainly, there are so many great bars and restaurants that it was worth a separate blog post. Therefore, check out where to go for the best food and drinks in Lecce in this The Best Bars & Restaurants in Lecce guide!

Eat and Drink in Lecce, Puglia, Italy

8 || Explore the southern area of Puglia as day trips from Lecc

We used Lecce as the base for several day trips to further explore the south of Puglia. Among others, day trips from Lecce are trips to Gallipoli, Otranto and driving along the coastline to visit Grotta Della Poesia. In addition, check out what you can do and see in the south of Puglia, as day trips from Lecce in this guide.

Grotta della Poessia, South of Puglia, Lecce, Italy
Beach in Gallipoli, Puglia, Italy

- The Best Hotels and Apartments in Lecce -

We decided to stay in Lecce for 3 nights to avoid packing our backs too often. Next to that, it is a city with enough bars and restaurants to spend a week!

Firstly, my recommendation for the best value for money when staying in Lecce, is spending your time in a mid-range apartment. 
Unquestionably, Balbo Suits & Apartments is a wonderful apartment suitable for 2 to 3 persons, where we stayed.  Also, the accommodation is conveniently located, with a vibrant street with several bars within 5 minutes, and a free parking spot within 10 minutes.

Alternatively, if you are looking for a high-end place to stay, check out Palazzo Lecce (€335 for a night).

Lastly, in case you are looking for budget accommodation, BaraccoSuite will be a good option (€65 for a night).

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What to do in Lecce, City Guide, Puglia, Italy


What to do in Lecce, City Guide, Puglia, Italy