An Italian summer spent under the shade of an olive tree, where the caper berries grow in the cracks of ancient stone…. Days spent reading sunblock stained novels. Where the only hard part of the day is narrowing down your order at the local osteria. 

Location

We started in the sleepy town of Martina Franca, then worked our way south to a small town called Ruffano. It's essential to have a car in Puglia, you want to be able to explore all the fantastic towns and beaches. 

Places to eat 

Getting recommendations from the locals is key. Angela, our hotel manager in Martina Franca made us a booking at her friends restaurant, Torre di Angelucco. Everyone stopped talking once we tasted our primi. Grilled octopus on a bed of fava bean purée - it was pure heaven. Martina Franca is famous for its cured meats, do try the Capocollo as it will melt in your mouth!

We found ourselves revelling in life’s simple pleasures at La Taverna Della Gelosia. The white washed walls of Ostuni are the perfect backdrop to sip on a glass of Bianco d’Alessano and a plate of Orecchiette con sumo alla ricotta forte (Orecchiette pasta with tomato sauce and ricotta). 

Swimming spots

While all the beaches are sensational along the coastline, be mindful of the wind direction as the last thing you want is those Adriatic winds interfering in a good game of bat and ball. 

We spent the day at Lito Kalè Cora, sprawled on day beds that are nestled in the coves of Torre Specchia Ruggeri. 

Take a packet of handmade taralli, a Puglia biscuit made from white wine, fennel and flour - its the best beach snack. 

The beach taverna at Marnia Serra offers the most delightful fresh seafood. We threw ourselves into the crystal blue water on the pretext we needed cooling down, but really it was to wash our sauce splattered faces clean. 

For a drink

I do recollect a spectacular bergamot digestive somewhere in the old town of Lecce. Don’t know where, don’t know when…. But you are in the land of the the aperitivo.

Favourite LF travel pieces

Lucy Folk has resort wear down pat. Sunnies with the eyewear chain are essential. The glam Playa towelling robe makes moving from the beach to bar very easy. 

Anything else of note 

While you think a week is long enough, think again and book for 2!