A flourishing architectural and artistic history define Lecce and its culture. It is a city that is perfect for those that enjoy walking and exploring. It is has defined boroughs that are segmented by profession: the antique dealers, the butchers, the locksmiths, and the printers.
Because of its many settlers and conquerors over the centuries, the city is influenced by different ancient cultures that have given rise to the city's art, cuisine, and architecture. The city is regarded as the cultural capital of the Apulia region and is home to great museums, churches, castles, restaurants, fun festivals, and a thriving nightlife. The historical centre is includes a thriving artistic community that is famed for its Papier Mache products, statuaries, ceramics, handmade leather goods, linens, and paintings. The local sandstone is soft and malleable and is its biggest export. This is also a large and important agricultural center known for exquisite wines and exceptional olive oils. Their ceramics are another specialty of the region and are renowned for their lovely decorations. With their National Art Academy and large university, visitors will find artists seemingly everywhere, creating unique and interesting pieces by hand.
This delightful city is thankfully devoid of the tourist hordes and tourist versions of local cuisine. Its sun-bleached stone buildings, blue sky, and cobblestone streets characterize the town. Flowering trees release a tantalizing perfumed aroma that scents the air and lends to the overall relaxed vibe of the town itself. During the midday hours, the city seems somewhat abandoned, but that is because this far south in Italy, people take their siesta hours very seriously. The city and its businesses shut down and the marble-paved sidewalks and piazzas are virtually empty.
Once night falls, the city shakes off its afternoon slumbers and comes alive. Nightlife in Lecce is a serious deal. Southern Italians love eating dinner late, so be prepared for dinners around 9:30 p.m. and lasting until 11:00.
After dinner, most Southern Italians go for their traditional passeggiata (walk). This is no ordinary walk; the passeggiata provides the perfect opportunity for catching up with family, friends, and neighbors, and to show off their stylish wardrobes, and window shop. The passeggiata transforms the city into a vibrant assemblage of people who make up this gorgeous city.