The Gargano peninsula’s coastlines and beaches
You’ll want a car to explore the southern Italian region of the Gargano, in Puglia. The Gargano peninsula is the ‘spur’ in the heel of the Italian boot. The drives along its dramatic coasts are lovely.
The road is high up and curving, but road conditions are pretty good. There are places to stop and park the car to allow you to get out and admire the views over the rugged coastlines.
There are pretty rock formations and numerous ancient watchtowers dotting the coastline. These used to be an important line of defense for the local population – watching for Saracen or Ottoman invaders. Today, they serve as panoramic viewing points over the dramatic coastline.
A drive along the coast is also the perfect way to discover some of the more ‘hidden’ beaches. The region has kilometers and kilometers of wide, sandy beaches that are easily accessible.
But a coastal drive allows you discover the wilder coves, cut into the stunning white cliffs of the Gargano coastline. These are located between the pretty town of Vieste and southward towards the town of Mattinata.
To reach these beaches, you must park your car along the road and walk down a trail – be sure to have decent walking shoes on hand – in order to reach these pebble beaches. It’s well worth the effort. Here are some of the best:
This pebble beach is located south of Vieste, just after the Felipe coastal tower, and in front of a small island with the same name. The waves are gentle and the water clear.
The trail is quite short and most of it is gentle, only the last section along the rocks is a bit slippery. Unlike most of the beaches in this area, this beach does have a snack bar and a restaurant, so you can purchase snacks and beverages there.
This is the easiest beach to reach, with a driving path that leads you almost up to the beach. The beach itself is very tiny and can fill up quickly on weekends. Nevertheless, it’s nestled in a pretty spot along the rocks. There are no bathrooms or snack bars on this beach. Bring your own water.
This is my favourite beach in the area and it also takes the most effort to reach, down a fairly long trail. But you’ll be happy to have made the effort.
This pebble beach is surrounded by dramatic white cliffs, boulders and lush green Mediterranean pines. The water is an inviting clear blue and it’s a pleasure to swim in this beautiful spot. There are no facilities here, so bring along any provisions.
Enjoy these beautiful Gargano beaches on your visit to the area.
Gorgeous! Wait for me. I’ll be right there.
I agree, Julia. I’d like to be back right now, too!
[…] We stayed in picturesque Vieste, took a boat trip to the stunning Tremiti Islands, and explored all the beautiful swimming coves on the peninsula. […]
[…] other Puglia tips, see my earlier posts on the seaside town of Vieste, Gargano’s best beaches, visiting the Tremiti Islands, medieval Vico del Gargano, and, if you’re headed further […]