Thursday June 9
After breakfast I made arrangements for a taxi to take me to the private beach recommended by the hotel. It is a beautiful sunny day, and I can’t wait to relax on a beach!
Although I can see the sea from my hotel room window, it is not that close, and almost impossible to reach without a car. There is no public transportation to the beach, and from what I understand, most of the beaches have private accesses. The hotel has an arrangement with Viar Beach Club and for half a day it costs €15 for an umbrella and two lounge chairs and access to the beach. That is really not too bad but then the taxi is €25 round trip. It’s a beautiful day and I love the beach, so this is part of the vacation in Ostuni.
At 10:30 the taxi arrived and soon I understood why it was necessary. It took about 15 minutes and the area was quite remote. To reach the beach club property, we had to take a dirt road past rows of olive trees, but once there, it was a beautiful setting, all natural with woods right down to the beach. Since this is not yet tourist season here, it was not at all crowded, and in fact, they were waiting for me.
The beach was so beautiful. It actually was a sandy beach without rocks, something I have not seen in Italy. The water was beautiful with its shades of green, turquoise and royal blue. It was 11 am and I was in heaven.
I had arranged with the taxi driver to return at 2 pm, because the hotel reception desk clerk had told me that I would not find a cab there.
I totally enjoyed my day at Viar Beach Club, and it was worth the entrance fee and taxi fare. While waiting for the taxi I had a Coca Light at their bar, and met Donato, who manages this property. He is young, and lives here with his wife, and has been working at making this beach resort into a first-class establishment. The swimming pool and jacuzzis are just being completed and there are numerous options available for guests, such as massage, volleyball, tennis and soccer. The are three bars and a restaurant, and according to Donato, the weekends are very busy. Beginning in July and lasting till September, every day will be busy with tourists, as that is their season.
Donato was very welcoming and even extended to me the use of his computer if I needed it. He is very up-to-date with his business with a website and a Facebook page. I could not help but notice how he spoke with pride about his plans for his beach club.
When I returned to the hotel I had a panini at their outdoor cafe, then went back to my room to do some photo editing and writing.
Later I headed out to the centro and found the pub, Gipas 111, where Lucia works. It is a very cool place, very modern with its purple and black triangular chairs outdoors.
Actually this used to be an old bakery, and Lucia gave me a tour, explaining that the original oven is now used to store the bottles of liquor and wine.
I had a glass of wine there and talked some more with Lucia.
After I left, I went to an outdoor trattoria, La Reggia Ristorante, and enjoyed some pasta pomodoro and the secial bread product from this region, taralli.
As I walked home I smiled, happy to be in Italy.