Halfway between Gallipoli and Santa Maria di Leuca, Torre San Giovanni is an enchanting seaside resort overlooking the Ionian Sea.
Torre San Giovanni owes its name to the presence of a defensive watchtower dating back to the XVI century, such as in many other places along Salento coastline, by the will of Charles V of Hapsburg and used to counter the Saracen pirates coming from the sea. The building, that in the past was also used as a lighthouse to indicate to the sailors the presence of shallows, today presents itself outside with a curious black and white checkerboard pattern.
Despite Torre San Giovanni is a hamlet of the bigger Ugento, it has a very lively centre, with restaurants and boutiques which enrich the main street. In summertime, the town is enlivened with traditional celebrations, such as the Sagra della Puccia, that celebrates a typical local bread kneaded with the delicious local olives.