For more than 2,000 years, Brindisi has been a maritime crossroad and its lifeblood has always been the trade between the Italian peninsula and the ports of the Ionian Sea. Today, ferries and cargo vessels bustle between Brindisi and Greece 24 hours a day. In ancient times this was the terminus of the "Via Appia", one of the Roman Empire’s most important highways, and the city still holds a handful of ancient remnants of Rome’s imperial apogee, along with some more recent memorials (visitors will certainly not miss the splendid Roman Column by the promenade). Unlike many others Italy's regions, Apulia (the "heel" of the "boot") remains largely under the radar of industrial tourism, which makes Brindisi (and the small towns nearby) a less travelled road, which makes up a part of its undeniable appeal. The coastline is a striking mixture of ruggedly beautiful cliffs and grottoes interspersed with a scattering of long, sandy beaches. In summer, multiple resorts are in operation, while the winter months see them patiently hibernate in an anticipation of the next summer season.