Porto Cesareo, called Portus Sasinae by the Romans, is a beautiful seaside resort, famous for its 17 kilometres of golden beaches which are well-equipped letting tourists enjoy an enchanting, easy to use sea. It is located in an area inhabited since the Prehistoian Age, as many findings testify. Roman relics, indeed, are not much evidence (except for the seven megalithic columns in green marble, now underwater in the sea) although it was an important port during that period. Subsequently, the town was slowly abandoned and around the year 1000 the centre began to return to life thanks to a group of Byzantine monks. The ownership of the feud where the port was located passed to the Orsini, Acquaviva, and Nardò and the port underwent a period of growing success thanks to trade with Sicily, Greece and the Maritime Republics. The Torre Cesarea was built in the 15th century to protect against pirate raids from the sea. It is still well-preserved and can be visited.
The fortunes of Porto Cesareo resumed in the 18th century, thanks to the creation of a tuna-fish factory in the sea in front of the port, which brought back inhabitants from the surrounding areas.
Very well preserved watch towers are located in the area including the Cesarea, Chianca and Lapillo towers, which are definitely worth visiting. They recount of a historic period when the Saracen raids represented an almost constant danger for the population of the Salento.
Finally, we also suggest to visit the Oceanographic Museum, the Fish Museum and the beautiful church of Madonna del Perpetuo Soccorso.