Otranto is a town and commune in the province
of Lecce (Apulia, Italy).
Otranto is situated on the east coast of the Salento peninsula. The Strait of Otranto connects
the Adriatic Sea with the Ionian
Sea. The harbour is small and has little trade.
Also known as The Gateway to the East, situated
on the easternmost point of the Salento Peninsula, the 'heel' of
Italy, Otranto is a town of art and the neighbouring town is Lecce
known as the Florence of the south'.
The lighthouse Faro della Palascìa, at approximately 5 km southeast of Otranto, marks the most easterly point of the Italian mainland.
About 50 km south lies the promontory of Santa Maria di Leuca (so called since ancient times from its white cliffs, leukos being Greek for white), the southeastern extremity of Italy, the ancient Promontorium lapygium or Sallentinum. The district between this promontory and Otranto is thickly populated and very fertile.
In 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005 and in 2011, Otranto was awarded the first prize among the most beautiful and clean beaches of Italy, thanks to the recognition of the 5 SAILS of Legambiente.