With nearly 300 days of sun per year and an enviable stretch of Adriatic coastline for beach lovers to soak up all of those rays, it’s no wonder that Ostuni, La Città Bianca (The White City), is a popular travel destination. But, when this part of southeastern Italy is your adopted hometown, it gets even better.
Ostuni lays claim to a 20 km (12 mi.) stretch of predominately blue flag-rated sandy beaches, intimate coves, rocky outcrops and dunes. Collectively known as the Marina di Ostuni, it runs from Lido Morelli, Pilone, Rosa Marina and Villanova up north, down to Gorgognolo, Costa Merlata, Torre Pozzelle and Lamaforca in the south.
For me, this meandering, pastel-colored stretch serves as my base for seaside photoshoots when I’m not out and about exploring the nearby countryside in search of more abandoned abodes of the Valle d’Itria. And, one of my fave spots along this coast is the area around Spiaggia Santa Lucia.
The sandy beach, bookended by several rock-enclosed coves, is surrounded by Mediterranean vegetation, like lentisk, thyme, cistus and centuries-old juniper bushes that play peekaboo with the bluest-of-blues out to sea. And, within easy walking distance stands the Masseria Santa Lucia, a massive 16th century farmhouse that’s been converted into a four-star, 129 room luxury hotel and spa, from which this little slice of paradise takes its name.