VF del sud day 34: Lecce to Martano, 31km

The route headed east this morning, even though the final destination is south. After a couple of hours the reason was revealed: a town with a rather impressive castle. Less impressive was the fact that the cafe was closed. Fortunately I had already partaken in an earlier town at a cafe that I happened upon quite unexpectedly.

Acaya castle, east of Lecce!

After Acaya the scenery became much more pleasant. The entry and exit to any larger urban centre if often less than appealing. The landscape hereabouts dominated by stone walls, olive groves and little else. The absence of farm buildings meant the absence of dogs, which was an unexpected bonus. Many of the olive trees, similar to previous days, are dead or dying. It’s a harsh landscape, and if olive trees can’t make it, nothing can. Despite the lack of people, there appears to be a conscientious effort to either stabilize or restore the traditional stone huts in the olive groves.

Traditional stone huts, and traditional small farmer transport.

The other surprise amongst the olives, were some sheep (a traditional breed perhaps, so that they blend in with all the other traditional stuff), some goats, and a shepherd with a cat (I kid you not!)

Tonight I’m staying in a town called Martano, the wind is howling, and the locals are complaining about the cold. It’s a pleasant town, lots of old buildings, but I haven’t found the centre of it – the bar where all the old codgers hang out!

I took this photo of a Palazzo built in 1710 before I realized it was my booking.com destination for the night. Cheapest place in town!
Inside the entrance. My room is the door up the stairs!

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