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Salento routes: Otranto’s bauxite quarry

Located about a kilometer from Otranto, near the lighthouse of Punta Palascia and Mount Sant’Angelo, the Bauxite Quarry is one of the places to be missed during your holiday in Salento.

It is a bauxite reservoir, the mineral from which aluminum is recovered, discovered in the 1940s and exploited until 1976. The mine, abandoned and not subject to any type of environmental recovery, has undergone over the years the phenomenon of the spontaneous renaturalisation: the surrounding aquifers flooded the quarry, creating a unique landscape, made even more surreal by the desolation surrounding it. To make the landscape unusual is the strong contrast of colors created between the red earth (due to bauxite residues) and the emerald green of water and vegetation that slowly occupy the mine, now dismantled.

Otranto’s bauxite quarry is one of the most unusual places in the Salento area and is visited today by hundreds of tourists from all over the world. Which is the best time of the day to visit the site? Surely the sunset, when the colors are emphasized and you seem to be in a landscape it seems almost “martian”.

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How to get there: by car, you must take the road that leads from Otranto to Santa Cesarea, entering Otranto from the last crossroads and turning right on the right. After a stretch of dirt road you have to leave the car and walk on foot following the signs along the surrounding paths.

 

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