Apulia (Italian name: Puglia) is a region in south-eastern Italy that includes the heel part of Italy’s boot. It is bordered by the sea on two sides (the Adriatic Sea in the east and the Ionian Sea to the southeast). The region is characterized by endless olive groves, long fields of grain and vineyards. The charm of this tour is that it leads you into a region of scenic beauty, which is, by today’s standards, still unspoiled by mass tourism and yet still retains testimony of its great and ancient culture.
DAY TO DAY ITINERARY
1st DAY Matera.
Arrival. For millennia, inhabitants of this region have carved dwellings directly into ravines and gullies made of tuff (or tufa), a characteristic honey-coloured soft stone. These houses are called “Sassi” and are today a World Heritage site.
2nd DAY Matera–Alberobello (70 km).
You cycle to the famous trulli of Alberobello and Locorotondo. Trulli were generally constructed as dwellings or storehouses. Alberobello is situated upon two hills, once separated by a riverbed. On the eastern hill is the new town, with modern architectural features. On the western hill, the trulli are lined up in an urban conglomeration, subdivided into two districts: Monti and Aia Piccola, both National Monuments from 1930, and today World Heritage sites.
3rd DAY Alberobello–Ostuni (40 km).
You cycle through the countryside to Ostuni, which is an architectural jewel and is commonly referred to as “the White Town” for its white walls and its typically white-painted architecture.
4th DAY Ostuni–Lecce –Gallipoli (70 km by train + 50 km by bike).
A train transfer brings you to Lecce. After a few kilometers through this amazing baroque town, you go deep into the “salentinian countryside”, before approaching the Ionian coast and your destination, Gallipoli.
5th DAY Gallipoli–Santa Maria di Leuca (50 km).
Cycling further along the coast you will reach Santa Maria di Leuca. The name Santa Maria di Leuca was given by the ancient Greek sailors who came from the East. They saw this place lightened by the sun and therefore called it “leukos”, meaning white. Santa Maria di Leuca is a famous seaside resort and a fishing area.
6th DAY Santa Maria di Leuca–Otranto (50 km).
Today you will cycle northwards along the Adriatic coast to Otranto, the most eastern point of Italy where you can visit the beautiful Cathedral and the great Aragonese Castle.
7th DAY Otranto–Lecce (50 km).
Riding along the Alimini Lakes and their unique Mediterranean bush you will enter Lecce. Thanks to its Baroque style, it has earned the nickname of Florence of the South. You will come to appreciate the rich sculpted motives done in the 17th- century with the tender stone from Lecce. The old town enclosed by what is left of the ancient walls, bears the impression of that exuberant period.
8th DAY Lecce.
Departure. Lecce is well connected by train with the airports of Bari and Brindisi.
Mostly in the lowlands, sometimes hilly, the itinerary is almost always on asphalt roads. Traffic issues are almost non existent in Apulia except during the high holiday season. The route includes very beautiful stretches on the coast. Train transfer from Ostuni to Lecce is not included in the price (approx. 60 min., 8 € per person + bike)..
Total cycling distance is 320km.
The nearest airport is Bari, 90 minutes away. Transfer from Bari to Matera: 45 € per person (minimum 2 persons).
Transfer from Lecce to Bari, Lecce to Brindisi, and Bari to Matera are all on request. Transfers to be confirmed when booking the tour.
TOUR SCHEDULE & PRICE
Departure Dates for 2017: Saturdays, plus Fridays in May and September
Season 1: 24.03 and 20.10
Season 2: 25.03-29.04 and 30.09-19.10
Season 3: 30.04-16.06 and 25.08-29.09
|Price per person, double occ.||CAD||$1050|
|Season 2 surcharge||$150|
|Season 3 surcharge||$250|
Single surcharge: $320
E-bike surcharge: $170
This tour includes:
Many Italian towns are charging a “city tax” of approx. 2-3 euro per day. This can only be paid to each hotel.
Telephone: 705-949-1710 or 888-297-4786
Station Mall, 293 Bay St., Sault Ste Marie, P6A 1X3
Monday to Friday: 9.30 am. to 5.30 pm.
Saturday: by appointment