A tour with a maximum of 15 passengers that will take you to the discovery of this magnificent region chosen as the most beautiful in the World and a Unesco Heritage. We can not miss to include the visit of Matera, the capital of Culture, famous for its “stones” and a natural set of many Hollywood movies.
Arrival at your hotel in Bari, where your tour leader will be waiting for you. Check-in, according to your arrival time. In the evening (around 2:00 pm) start discovering Apulia with a fascinating old town walking tour that includes the Basilica of St. Nicholas and the beautiful Cathedral of St. Sabino, which are among the greatest examples of Apulian Romanesque architecture. You will also be able to visit the famous Norman-Swabian Castle (exterior). This 12th-century fortress, which was built by Roger the Norman, was rebuilt by Frederick II of Swabia after its partial destruction.
This castle is among Bari’s iconic sites and is an imposing fortress overlooking the sea from a stunning viewpoint. Proceed to Piazza Mercantile´s column of justice, a white marble column with a stone lion, to which they used to tie insolvent debtors. At the end of the visit learn about one of the most important products of this region: olive oil and have a taste. Return to the hotel and enjoy a welcome bu et dinner with typical Apulian products. Overnight in Bari Meals: D
American buffet breakfast at the hotel and departure to Alberobello, the capital of Trulli. Join a walking tour to visit this picturesque village. The tour will start with a beautiful view from the Belvedere terrace, and an introduction to the interesting history of this UNESCO World Heritage Site. Continue your visit of the two districts of Aia Piccola and Rione Monti, where you can admire the typical houses with their unique architecture. Walking around “trulli” and its little alleys, you’ll reach the trullo-shaped Church of San Antonio.
At the end of the tour have a tasting of Valle D’Itria’s local products. The tour continues with a visit of Polignano a Mare, a small town set on high cliffs, sporting a breathtaking panorama over the Apulian coast. The many balconies perched over the sea o er spectacular views over natural grottos and small coves, surrounded by crystal clear waters. Enjoy the “special co ee” prepared by a renowned pastry chef or you can’t say you have been in Polignano! Return to Bari. Overnight at the hotel. Meals: B
American buffet breakfast at the hotel and check out. Transfer to Ostuni the Medieval “White Town”, whose narrow whitewashed alleys guide visitors to the majestic Cathedral, in the late Romanic and Gothic style. Admire Palazzo Vescovile, the elegant Loggia and the baroque column of Saint Orazio. After the visit move on to Masseria Grieco for a special tasting of extra virgin olive oil, wine, local bakery products such as “taralli” and “focacce” and homemade local cakes. In the evening arrive in Lecce. Check in at the hotel and overnight. Meals: B (tasting in Ostuni area)
American buffet breakfast at the hotel and departure to Otranto known as “Gateway to the East”. It is the most Oriental of all of Italy’s cities, founded by Greeks from Crete thousands of years ago. Take a walk with your tour leader and see the Norman cathedral that is the largest Romanesque building in Apulia. Admire the mosaic floor, formed from thousands of pieces of stone, that depict scenes from the Old Testament and figures from Breton legends. Continue to the Church of St. Peter and the Aragonese Castle. Enjoy the panoramic views out to sea. If the weather is good you can see all the way across the Adriatic to Greece and Albania. Proceed to Santa Maria di Leuca which sits on the southernmost tip of the Salento peninsula, on a stunningly beautiful bay. Legend has it that it was in this area that Aeneas, the founding father of the Roman people, set foot on land. And Saint Peter is said to have started his missionary work in Italy from here. Depending on the weather conditions, take a boat tour, which is the only way to see the truly fascinating underwater caves and other geological formations o the coast and…have a refreshing swim!
Return to Lecce and take a guided tour of this jewel of Apulia. The exploration of Lecce starts from the beginning of the pre-Roman and Roman times, through to the great Baroque period. The route starts at Porta Napoli to the Piazza Duomo (Cathedral, Bell Tower, Bishop’s Seminar). Continue walking to the Church of St. Irene, Sant’ Oronzo square, where you can see the ruins of the Roman amphitheatre, the church of San Marco and the Sedile. Walking through the streets of the old town, we will visit the Church of Santa Chiara and the Roman Theatre, other important details in the history of Lecce. The tour ends at the Basilica of Santa Croce, the jewel of Lecce Baroque and the Celestine Convent. Overnight in Lecce. Meals: B
American buffet breakfast in the hotel, check out and departure to Manduria, to visit a special Museo della civiltà del vino di Manduria. A Demo-Ethno-Anthropologic museum created by the generosity of individuals, groups and associations to preserve collections, objects and testimonials about local culture. The museum is located inside the Winery ‘Produttori Vini Manduria’ and represents the essence of wine and other local products that will be shown and explained through a tasting of wine and local food. A sommelier will guide you in a tasting of 5 wines, accompanied by cheese, homemade pasta, and cakes.
After this delicious light lunch, you will head off to Matera to admire the famous Sassi of Matera, ancient cave dwellings that are still in use today. They have been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Discover an outstanding example of a rock-cut settlement, perfectly adapted to the terrain and ecosystem. Located in historic Matera, the former capital of Basilicata, the Sassi provide a glimpse into the lives of the ancient people of a region that has been inhabited since Paleolithic times. From the top of Civita, the medieval part of town that is surrounded by tall bastions and aristocratic buildings, the tour takes you down to the Sasso Caveoso, another rock church dedicated to the Apostle Peter. Stop at Casa Grotta, where a small museum is dedicated to the farming population of the Matera region. At the end of the visit proceed to Bari. Check in at the hotel and overnight. Meals: B (tasting in Ostuni area)
American buffet breakfast at the hotel, check out. End of the tour. Meals: B