Destination Puglia, bizarre strip of land between two seas, starting from the suggestive Matera, hidden town in the forests and mountains of Basilicata region. Selected wineries, restaurants, farms and bakeries: forget about diets and be curious to know one of the places where food and wine culture is considered sacred, that’s the South. An eight-days bike trip, among olive groves, dry stone walls, vineyards and plenty of good food going down the Heel of Italy from the East to the West coast.
Welcome to the City of Stones: UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1991 and next European Capital of Culture in 2019, Matera will show you its historical center, unique in the world, and its extraordinary landscapes, using just its simplicity and authenticity. After an accurate introduction to the history of the city, we will have a first encounter with the local food culture at the friendly Osteria Malatesta, a pleasant and informal place to taste some typical dishes of Matera cuisine.
After breakfast a private transfer will take us to the Federician castle in Gioia del Colle; then a delicious glass of Primitivo di Gioia with a taste of the typical mozzarella Fior di latte will charge our batteries to start pedaling. We will cycle towards Noci, for an interesting meeting with a true sandwich gourmet. We will then head to Alberobello, cruising along dry stone walls and olive trees we will go into Valle d’Itria to discover its old winemaking traditions and indigenous grape varieties such as Verdeca and Fiano Minutolo. Gastronomical stay in Alberobello, in one of the taverns of the Aia Piccolo area.
After breakfast we will reach the baroque town of Martina Franca where we can taste another regional product: the capocollo of Martina Franca (a cold cut), a Slow Food Presidium. The ones preferring sweets will not be disappointed: the bocconotto from Martina is one of the most famous delicacies of the Valle d’Itria. Still a few kilometers separate us from Locorotondo where we will literally get our hands dirty making pasta with Mrs. Antonella in her Taverna del Conte. After lunch we will try the thrill of riding on a stretch of the Apulian aqueduct before arriving in Cisternino, one of the most beautiful villages in Italy. Dinner will be in one of its reinvented butcher shops, or fornelli, where you can personally choose the meat cuts to be grilled on the spot for you.
After a sad farewell to the fornelli of Cisternino, we will head towards the Coastal Dune Park to learn about another typical Apulia product: the olive oil. In the most ancient rural landscape of Europe, between plants of ancient olive trees, we will stop for a tasting in one of the park’s Masserias. After reaching the sea and having tasted some good fish, we will get to Ostuni, the White City with its unique ovens and artisans of olive wood. Before dinner we will try an aperitif with the products of “Giardini della Grata”, an agricultural space rescued from abandonment thanks to the work of members of the cooperative Solequo and also enhanced with restoration of ancient artifacts.
A day in the name of sweetness and fitness. We will discover the original recipe of the cookie, or biscotto, of Ceglie Messapica at the antique Caffè Centrale; we will try the curly almond of Francavilla Fontana made from the hands of master Cosimo Passiante, one of the last keepers of the ancient technique of their preparation; we will visit the small museum at the bar Carone in Oria, where a great marzipan carefully prepared in the near and authentic lab is served. There will be something salted as well, in the beautiful setting of the Salento plain, to put an end to our day in the beautiful land of Primitivo.
Early in the morning we will cycle through ancient vineyards to reach Manduria, capital of Primitivo of Salento. Here we will visit the Museum of civilization of Primitivo wine located inside the Cantina Produttori Vini Manduria. The Museum collects objects of the past peasants daily life and their working tools, that will tell us the social history and the agrarian economy of Salento. After the visit we will taste the authentic local cuisine, accompanied by a good glass of wine. In the afternoon we will go to discover QU.ALE, an ambitious project of a young Apulian entrepreneur whose belief is that a quality wine should be accessible to all, in terms of costs, and sustainably grown and, even better, finance projects related to social and environmental issues. After the visit we will go to the sea reaching the west coast, by the Ionio side.
A relaxing day, all along the coast! With the blue sea as our companion, passing near ancient coastal towers and long beaches of fine sand, we will reach Porto Cesareo, small town by the sea inhabited mostly by fishermen. Today our culinary research will be necessarily dedicated to the
gifts of the sea: seafood, mussels, clams and the delicious sea urchins there will delight our
After breakfast we suggest a last dip in the clear waters of the small seaside resort of Porto Cesareo.
Price per person based on two sharing
Every day from 01.03 to 30.11.2016
High Season from 01.07 to 31.08.2016
8 days / 7 nights
This tour is available to anyone with a minimum of habit to cycle. Daily mileage varies from 30 to 40 kilometers a day, with scheduled stops for visits and refreshments. The route is focused on typical food and wine of the Region. The bike will be a way to dispose of the good food and enjoy the many landscapes that this land has to offer. There will also be cultural moments and the opportunity, if possible, for a good swim in the clear Apulia sea.
En suite rooms in good 3 star hotels. 7 breakfasts, 7 dinners, 7 lunches and tastings listed above included. Drinks are not included during dinners and lunches.
One of our expert tour leader will be with you for the whole trip. Sharing with you the love for travel and nature and a great knowledge of the territory, you will live an authentic holiday full of fun and relax.
Claudia studied Touristic Management, before specializing as a Tour Planner. The first tour she ever planned was her own life, traveling through Italy Spain Portugal England and Costa Rica, meeting lots of people, learning languages and riding around on her bike. Among her friends, she’s renown as a “buona forchetta”, italian way to describe people who love to indulge in the pleasures of food: sit with her at a table covered with delicacies and you’ll be delighted by her good mood on such occasions. In 2015, Claudia moved back to her beloved Apulia, willing to show people from around the world how beautiful her region is. She’s still sticking with the things she loves the most: good food, clear sea, planning trips and a bike to keep the line.
We organize your holidays in Italy: tours by bike, trekking, snorkeling, cultural trips preferring public transportations instead of private ones. We propose holidays “with a slow pace”, because we need to taste every instant of a good trip, to recapture calm and peace, to smile and think, to admire what nature offers, to chat together with locals, to have a direct approach to local cultures and to travel responsibly and sustainably.