The coastline of Torre Guaceto has a variety of ecosystems that make this an especially important spot naturalistically. Just inland from the water there are wetlands where many species of aquatic birds stop and spend the winter. The beachfront can be low and sandy with beautiful dunes, or rocky with small islands just off the tower. The dunes area has first stage vegetation with plants like prickly juniper. Further inland you’ll find mastic trees, myrtle and thorny broom. The underwater environment is as varied as the land above sea level and has wide meadows of Posidonia where you can see sea horses and needle fish and rockier areas with brown algae like Cystoseira and pre-coralligenous growth like violescent sea-whip (Eunicella singularis), bryozoans (Sertella and false coral Myriapora truncata) and other false corals. Sea watching and snorkelling are fun and easy and there are several diving centres that can take you on tours of the rocky and more difficult to visit areas. This area is an important area for spotting loggerhead sea turtles, Caretta caretta.

Marine Protected Area

Founded in 1991, the Marine Protected Area covers the area between Brindisi and Carovigno, from Punta Penna Grossa to Punta Guaceto, the areas that remain from the once large wetland Conca del Brindisino. The Marine Protected Area covers 2.227 hectares, of which 179 are a zone A integral reserve, signalled by yellow buoys. The zone B general reserve and zone C are delimitated by conical top marks on the shore. New rules and regulations are currently being approved.

This Marine Protected Area was granted ISO 14001environmental certification in 2005 and has been designated a SPAMI (Specially Protected Areas of Mediterranean Importance.) during the United Nation’s Barcelona Convention.

Useful Contacts

Consorzio di gestione
Castello Dentice di Frasso
via S. Anna, 6 – 72012 Carovigno
tel. 0831/990882
Centro visite e info-point,
Borgata Terranova, Carovigno
tel. 0831/989885
Capitaneria di Porto di Brindisi
tel. 0831/521022

By Boat

The Marine Protected Area runs for about 19 miles north of Brindisi and for about 1nm out to sea. An Aragonese tower from about 1550 overlooks the bay area which is entirely off limits for boats. In the zone “C” area, further out to sea, you may only navigate under sail or by oar and even then only with permission.  If you want to swim, dive or snorkel in the area it’s best to drop anchor outside it, just south east of the Scogli Apani. Continuing north you can stop at the small port at Villanova di Ostuni.

Places with specially protected ecosystems.