Porto Cesareo is a wonderful beach resort town in Puglia. You can find it halfway between Punta Prosciutto and Gallipoli. Read on to discover everything that you need to know about Porto Cesareo before your first visit.
This seaside resort town is very popular amongst tourists that visit Puglia. Everyone dreams about a magical beach vacation in Italy and this is exactly why people choose Porto Cesareo.
It has some of the best beaches in the region. There are kilometers upon kilometers of sandy beach with shallow water and wonderful turquoise colors.
Porto Cesareo Town
The town of Porto Cesareo started out as many settlements on the Ionian coastline of Puglia. It was a small fishing town with a low population. People went out to catch fish in the morning then sold it on the fish market.
However, as tourism started to pick up the locals have realized the beauty of their homes. They started building out apartments and lodgings for tourists who in turn were very happy to come and visit Porto Cesareo.
Today, what was once a sleepy fishing town, is a major beach resort hotspot in Salento. The location is excellent as everything is within reach especially if you rent a car. Let’s not even mention how awesome the beaches around town are and the protected natural environment.
The list of attractions doesn’t stop at the beach. Let’s take a look at everything you can see while you are in Porto Cesareo.
Marine Biology Museum
Whenever you are ready to learn something on your vacation make sure that you visit the Marine Biology Museum. It’s a small museum that will tell you about all the underwater animals that live near the coast.
It’s a great way to discover a world that’s mostly unknown to humans. There is a whole new world under the surface of the sea. We highly recommend this museum for those who love snorkeling. Maybe they can see the same fish in person later during the day.
Each summer there is a small amusement park near the pier of Porto Cesareo. It’s a great family attraction if you want to do something different for the day.
Although the park is small it can easily provide hours of entertainment. There are bumper cars, a Ferris wheel, and even a tiny roller coaster.
Boat Trips to Rabbit Island
There is a tiny island near Porto Cesareo. It’s called Rabbit Island in English and it’s totally uninhabited. You would think that the name comes from the shape right? Well, it’s actually untrue.
The name originates from the fact that the island was a breeding ground for rabbits that were later sold on markets inland. Fascinating isn’t it? Unfortunately, there are no more rabbits on the island.
Still, a visit to the island is due whenever you are nearby. You can walk around the marshland-like environment with big trees and be immersed in nature. While you are exploring the island you can find great hidden beaches and nice photo spots.
The only downside of a quick trip to Rabbit Island is the general neglect it receives from the local authorities. It’s not uncommon to see trash and overgrown vegetation.
The Port of Porto Cesareo
One of the most awesome places to stroll around and enjoy a great evening in Puglia is the port of Porto Cesareo. You can see the small fishing boats being rocked by the sea as the sun slowly sets on the scene.
Hop into one of the seaside restaurants enjoy a nice diner, try the local favorites, and most definitely have a tasty cup of wine. There are tons of wineries in Puglia producing excellent red wines.
Island Beach Club
A special club for a special beach resort town. It’s located on its own islet that you can access via a small pathway. Those who love to dance it out during the night can attend the parties at Island Beach Club.
When to visit Porto Cesareo?
Porto Cesareo is most awesome during the summer. The season starts around May when the water is still a little bit chilly but the weather is already picking up. It lasts all the way until October when it’s the opposite. The weather starts to get chilly but the sea doesn’t get cold yet.
For the best experience, we highly recommend July or August for your visit and September if you are looking at an off-season holiday.
Porto Cesareo Beaches
After an overview of Porto Cesareo, it’s time to look at the great beaches that are around town. After all this place is heavily known for its great beach holidays so let’s see where you can enjoy the Ionian coastline here.
What you need to know about the beaches around Porto Cesareo?
The seabed near Porto Caserao is extremely shallow. This creates a very optimal beach experience that’s suitable for anyone. Families, couples, the elderly, locals, and tourists absolutely love to be in the sea near Porto Cesareo.
Another thing that makes this location excellent is the color of the sea. Due to the shallow water, it has taken all shades and hues of turquoise.
Most of the beaches around the town are covered with sand which is another plus that tourists prefer. Many of them are well equipped with food vendors and sunbeds available to rent.
Spiaggia di Porto Cesareo
The main Porto Cesareo beach. It’s right near the city center and many people prefer to come here during the day. It’s a beautiful sand beach with extremely shallow waters.
Especially good for families and for those days when you just don’t feel like traveling long distances. The fact that this beach is inside the town means great amenities. Bars, restaurants, food vendors, and everything you would need are available on the spot.
Just keep in mind that although it’s a huge beach it can get really busy during summer. As Porto Cesareo fills up with tourists they will love to spend time on the local beach.
Spiaggia della Penisola della Strea
If you are looking for an abandoned beach near Porto Cesareo then Spiaggia della Penisola della Strea is your spot. You’ve got to work for it though!
It’s a beach at the end of the peninsula in front of Porto Cesareo. There are no houses only this small peninsula just nature and no roads either. You can drive up to the beginning and park your car, but after that, you have to walk!
Once you reach the sea you will be greeted by a beach that’s extremely beautiful and doesn’t have a lot of people. Even during the middle of the summer, we’ve seen only a few people visiting this place.
Contrary to most other beaches around this one is more on the rocky type, but the sea is similarly shallow and perfect for a day out.
Lido Dei Pirati
The Pirate’s Beach! Just north of Porto Cesareo, it’s still possible to visit this location by some walking. Better yet you can drive your rental and park nearby.
It’s a nice sand beach with great shallow water. Ideal for those long summer days where you feel like you can’t get enough of the Ionian sea.
It’s a great beach but it’s pretty much your run-of-the-mill beach in this region. Nothing exceptional, yet a great visit.
Le Dune Lido
This is our favorite beach near Porto Cesareo. It’s still incredibly close, yet it’s already surrounded by nature. Just for reference, it’s a 25-minute walk from the city center. If you have your hotel somewhere in the north of town it will be considerably less walking.
Why do we love this beach? It’s in the name! The so-called ‘dunes’ that form a natural barrier between the town and the beach are a great addition to the scenery. Consider the shallow waters, the turquoise color, and the sandy shore it all adds up nicely for a great beach experience.
Even more awesomeness north of town!
These were the top beaches we found at Porto Cesareo. Don’t worry though these are not your only options. If you rent a car you have more awesome beaches to discover such as Torre Lapillo and Punta Prosciutto. So, get out there and start exploring!
Porto Cesareo in Puglia
Whenever you are thinking about visiting Puglia, Porto Cesareo must be on your radar. It’s an awesome location especially if you visit during summer.
We hope that you have enjoyed our overview of Porto Cesareo. If you did make sure that you check out all of our guides on Puglia!