PROVINCIAL ARCHAEOLOGICAL MUSEUM SIGISMONDO CASTROMEDIANO
The Provincial Archaeological Museum is the oldest in Puglia, founded in 1868 by Sigismondo Castromediano, Duke of Cavallino; it preserves numerous testimonies of the Messapian civilization and of the Roman settlements. In the prehistoric section the Grotta dei Cervi of Porto Badisco was rebuilt, with interesting cave paintings. In the Pinacoteca, located on the upper floor of the building, are exhibited paintings that document the Byzantine and Venetian influences on the work of local artists, from the Middle Ages until the eighteenth century. One section is dedicated to the so-called minor arts: ceramics, pottery, ivories, bronzes and silverware from the Baroque period.
Address: Viale Gallipoli, 28
Opening days: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday
CHINESE MISSIONARY MUSEUM AND NATURAL HISTORY
The collection preserved in the Museum is the result of the objects that the missionaries of the Friars Minor have collected during their pilgrimages to the East. During their travels, the Friars collected rare objects, tapestries, statues, musical instruments, but also herbariums, shells, specimens of terrestrial fauna and marine, which are here exposed to the public. The collections are continuously enriched by donations and collaborations with the University of Salento, the WWF, Lega Ambiente.
Address: Via Monte San Michele, 4
Opening days: Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday
MUSEUM OF THE POPULAR TRADITIONS OF SANTA MARIA DI CERRATE
The Museum is set up in the thirteenth century Abbey of Santa Maria di Cerrate, which – after countless vicissitudes and changes of ownership – was transformed into a farm. The first part of the museum itinerary presents sculptures and architectural fragments of the Apulian Romanesque style, while the second part is peculiar to the rural and artisan traditions of the territory. Agricultural tools, crushers and mills for the olives are exhibited and some rooms of the peasant house have been rebuilt, such as the kitchen, the bedroom and the weaving room.
Address: Marina di Casalabate – Via Torre Rinalda
Opening days: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
FRANCISCAN ART GALLERY
Franciscan friars and local lay personalities painted paintings of sacred subjects between the 14th and 19th centuries and made it a gift to the Friars Minor convent. Among the most important painters are Giacomo da San Vito dei Normanni and Francesco da Martina Franca. At the end of the path in the Pinacoteca you can visit the Ninfeo di Fulgenzio, built in the rock according to the models of the Hellenistic and Roman theaters. The nymphaeum was a privileged place to cool off in the sultry and torrid days of the Apulian summer, as it was chilled by the gushing waters of the fountains and in general – so also in this case – it was connected to a calidarium.
Address: Via Imperatore Adriano 79
Opening days: Visible on request