Project Description

8 days – 7 nights / Trekking, Naturalistic, Food and Wine itinerary

Apulia: walking and cycling through the suggestive Itria Valley and its gorgeous coast.

8 days/ 7 nights

This walking tour will allow us to get to know the magical scenarios of the Itria Valley and a part of the suggestive coast of Puglia. Landscapes dotted with Trulli and dry stone walls with immense expanses of vineyards and ancient olive groves. For this itinerary we will stay in Locorotondo, a picturesque village with the typical white rectangular houses and the roofs made of “chiancarelle”. We will walk in search of edible wild herbs to learn about their use and collection up to the fairytale village of Alberobello with its 1400 trulli Unesco Heritage. We will visit Martina Franca, a Baroque pearl rich in history and the Pianelle wood with its vegetation. We will taste the typical white wines of this area of ​​Puglia and taste local products in suggestive Masserie. Some of the days will be characterized by trekking to discover the most authentic part of the Itria Valley and the coast where we will discover the beautiful village of Polignano a Mare overlooking the crystal clear sea. We will also take a nice bike ride along the historic Via Traiana through the regional park of the coastal dunes up to Ostuni “the white city” with its alleys and its imposing churches. We will conclude this exciting itinerary with a visit to one of the deepest canyons in Europe through which we will reach the wonderful Matera, city of the Sassi and Unesco Heritage.

Program

Day 1: Locorotondo

We meet in Locorotondo, the charming round town overlooking the Valle d’Itria. For this journey we stay in a cozy scattered hotel “albergo diffuso” where rooms are in typical white houses called “cummerse”or in a typical Masseria in the Itria Valley. Welcome dinner in a typical restaurant.

Day 2: Along the Aqueduct Path and Itria valley’s white wines

Today we start with a relaxing walk along the Aqueduct Cycling Path which dates back to 1900.
The path starts in the village of Cisternino passing through country roads and an enchanting village of Trulli, Figazzano, in the Itria Valley. We will explore at a slow pace and in a convivial way a suggestive landscape full of wheat fields, vineyards, beautiful orchards, olive groves and the characteristics dry stone walls declared heritage of humanity in all the mediterranea area.
Walking: 8 km, 4 hours ↑20 m ↓70 m ( level Easy)

After our pic nic lunch with home made product in the Itria Valley we visit the suggestive village of Locorotondo, among the most beautiful in Italy. Locorotondo is a delightful village of whitewashed houses set on a 400 meters high hill on the plateau called “Murgia dei Trulli” and characteristic sharp roofs made of gray “chiancarelle” stone, called cummerse. We walk through charming alleys and blossoming baloconies to reach the mother church dedicated to St. George. From the belvedere we can admire a mosaic of small vineyards marked by dry stone walls, silvery olive groves and Trulli. We keep on walking to visit the Church of San Nicola which dates back to 1600 and the Church of our Lady of the Greek. Our hike continues, stopping en route to visit the cellars of one of the local wine producer and taste Itria Valley wines. Free evening at your leisure.

Day 3: Bosco delle Pianelle through nature and old farms – Martina Franca a rococo pearl

Today, after a delicous breakfast, a short drive takes us to a Farmhouse “Masseria” where we walk through an old mule track to explore the wonderful natural reserve called “Bosco delle Pianelle” rich in vegetation like strawberry trees and wild orchids. through our walking from the “Gravina del Vuolo” to the “Sergente Romano’s cave” we get to know the the forest’s ecosystem and its history, in the past it was also a shelter for a group of post unitarian bandits.

Trekking: 5 km, 3-4 hours ↑ 30 m ↓ 30 m ( level Easy- Medium ) ( sometimes with outcropping rocks)

At the end of our trail we have a delicious lunch in the Farmhouse with homemade and local products.
In the afternoon we visit the beautiful baroque town of Martina Franca, a rococò pearl in the Itria valley. We explore the elegant historical centre walking through squares, churches, mansions, we discover its charming history, handicraft’s and culinary’s traditions.

Day 4 : Riding thorugh centuries old olive trees to know the ancient history of olive oil and Ostuni “the white city”

Today we will take a bike tour along the historical via Traiana which in Roman’s time connected Rome to Brindisi. We ride through the Coastal Dunes Regional Park surrrounded by thousands of ancient olive groves which tell us the millenary olive’s oil history. We will touch and embrace majestic centuries-old olives trees shaped by the wind and consumed by the warm sun of the summer season. We will visit a medieval underground oil mill escavetad in the limestone rock. At the end of our excursions we will taste extra virgin olive oil and others delicous local products.

Cycling : 12 km, 4 hours ↑30 m ↓30 m ( level Easy)

In the afternoon a short drive takes us to the archeological museum of Santa Maria di Agnano. In 1991, in a cave has been found the skeleton of a Neanderthal woman which dates back to 28.000 years ago and is considered the oldest mother in the world. The woman, infact, died probably for gestosis, and was buried with her fetus. We contiue visiting Ostuni “the white city” walking through the narrow alleys, craft shops, courtyards, steep stairs and piazzas where white houses are dotted with colorful geraniums. The fifteenth century Romanesque-Gothic Cathedral has a beautiful 24 rays rose portal. Free evening in Ostuni.

Day 5: Walking through the suggestive coast from Monopoli to Polignano a mare.

Today our journey will start from Monopoli. Before starting our coast trail we visit the charming old historical centre walking among narrow paved street where it happens to smell the scent of the sauce that has been cooked for hours or to meet fishermen while mending their nets. We continue our experience walking along the stunning cliffs overlooking the beautiful sea. This suggestive trail leads to Polignano a Mare, a fascinating medieval village perched on a high and jagged coastline full of caves such as the characteristic Grotta Palazzese. After a relaxing break we take a boat trip along the coast of Polignano a Mare to discover beautiful sea caves and stop for a refreshing swimming. Back to Locortotondo for a free evening.
Trekking: 7 km, 3 hours ↑20 m ↓20 m (easy – medium level ( sometimes with outcropping rocks)
Boat tour : 2 hours

Day 6: Discovering the “Terra delle Gravine” one of the biggest canyon in Europe and the city of Matera, Unesco World heritage

After breakfast a short drive brings us to Laterza where we will start our suggestive excursion in one of the biggest canyon in Europe surrounded by a wild nature and where it is possible to admire rapacious flying.

Trekking : 8 km, 3 hours ↑ 30 m ↓30 m ( level Easy – Medium ) ( sometimes with outcropping rocks

After this experience we taste fresh baked bread and the typical “focaccia” with tomatoes in a traditional bakery. We head on with a pleasant walk in Matera the city heritage of UNESCO and European Capital of Culture 2019. The city considered one the oldest in the world and we visit the quarters with the homes carved into the rock, “sassi”, that have made Matera famous in the world. Dinner in a tipical restaurant in the Murgia Materana.

Day 7: Exploring Masserie, Trulli and spontaneous edible herbs in the countryside of Alberobello

Today our journey starts from an historical farmhouse with manor house, trulli shaped stable, hypogeum and double-sloped church with eighteenth-century frescoes. We walk along “passaturi” and ancient country roads, among woods of Fragno, orchards and olive groves,
We will reach a rare temporary pond in the Murgia to observe and get to know spontaneous edible herbs and their harvest such as barberries, silene, plantain, asparagus wild chicory which accompanies the traditional dish of mashed beans. This emotioning exploring will lead us to Unesco World Heritage Alberobello with its 1400 cone-shaped houses.

Trekking: 8 km, 4 hours ↑ 30 m ↓30 m ( level Easy)

A relaxing break tasting fresh and aged cheese in a cheese crafts factory. We continue visiting the charming village of Alberobello and get to know its origin. At a craft workshop we will experience the production of a miniature trullo using local limestone. In the evevning we will enjoy a deliciuos dinner in a tipical Apulian Masseria where traditional food and a warm hospitality will embrace us.

Day 8 : Departure

We reserve the right for any changes

  • Bus for all included excursions
  • 7 overnights
  • 7 breakfast
  • 1 excursion by boat ( 2 hours)
  • 4 lunches (1 at a typical restaurant, 3 packed,)
  • 3 dinners
  • Guided visits as indicated on the program
  • Authorized hiking guide for all trekking routes ( English speaking)
  • 1 wine tasting in a winery cellar
  • 1 olive oil and local products tasting
  • English speaking tour leader
  • ¼ local wine and  ½ water/ person for meals included

• The journey to / from Apulia
• Single supplement
• Tourist tax (where applied)
• Tips and extras
• Any insurance or cancellation policies
• Anything that is not specified in “This package includes”

  • Trekking shoes (mandatory)
  • Rainproof (mandatory)
  • Trekking poles (recommended and in particular folding)
  • Sunhat
  • Technical shirt
  • Small backpack
  • Bottle
  • Supplements
  • Sunglasses and sun protection
  • Patches
  • mat
  • Binoculars and camera (recommended)

For this itinerary the recommended airports are Bari or Brindisi.

Puglia
8 days/ 7 nights
Level easy- medium
Trekking / guided excursions
Minimum partecipants 8 max 16
Period April – May –June– September- October

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