Sv puglia casual guided cycling 2011


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Sv puglia casual guided cycling 2011

  1. 1.           Casual  Guided  Cycling  Trip  2011    This  is  a  beautiful  Southern  Visions  casual  guided  cycling  trip  through  the  region  of  Puglia,  Italy,  which  lies   in   the   heel   of   the   boot,   along   the   sun-­‐drenched   Adriatic   Sea.     Choose   from   seven,   eight,   or   ten   (7,  8,  or  10)  day  options.    Puglia  offers  access  to  the  freshest  seafood,  crowd-­‐free  open  spaces,  irresistible  desserts  and  pastries,  distinct  wines,  and  the  50  million  olive  trees  that  make  this  region  the  world’s  leading  producer  of  olive  oil.    Come  to  Puglia  and  hear  the  voices  of  the  past  call  out  over  the  trulli  houses…we  promise,  once  you  discover  it,  Puglia  will  leave  a  lasting  impression.    Trip  Highlights   • Professionally  guided  cycling  each  day   • Walking  tours  of  Matera,  Alberobello,  and  Lecce   • Local  food  &  wine  tastings   • Mozzarella  making  demonstration  &  tasting  with  local  cheese  artisan    2011  Trip  Dates   • April  30-­‐May  9  (8-­‐day  April  30-­‐May  7;  7-­‐day  May  3-­‐9)   • September  17-­‐26  (8-­‐day  September  17-­‐24;  7-­‐day  September  20-­‐26)   • October  10-­‐19  (8-­‐day  October  10-­‐17;  7-­‐day  October  13-­‐19)   • Custom  dates  also  available    Day  1  (8-­‐  or  10  day)    We  will  meet  in  the  lobby  of  the  Palazzo  Viceconte  at  11:00  a.m.    You  will  find  your  guide  holding  a  Southern   Visions   sign.     Guests   are   expected   to   make   their   own   travel   arrangements   to   Matera   (in   the  Basilicata   region   bordering   Puglia).     On   request,   we   can   provide   a   shuttle   from   the   Bari   or   Brindisi  airport  or  train  station  at  an  additional  fee.    See  the  end  of  this  itinerary  for  information  on  arriving  to  and  departing  from  the  area.    Matera  walking  tour  Food  &  wine  tasting  buffet  lunch  at  Latteria  Rizzi  Dinner  &  Lodging:  Matera  –  Palazzo  Viceconte    For   those   who   choose   our   8-­‐   or   10-­‐day   tour,   we   will   begin   our   journey   by   discovering   the   indigenous  beauty  of  Matera  on  foot  with  a  guided  tour  of  the  sassi  (ancient  cave  dwellings  restored  for  current  use  as  homes,  shops,  and  restaurants),  only  recently  seen  by  foreign  eyes.    This  is  the  perfect  way  to  become  acquainted  with  the  area  before  we  begin  exploring  it  by  bike.    After  a  two  hour  walk,  we  will  immerse  
  2. 2. you   into   the   art   of   flavor   and   freshness   that   is   Southern   Italian   cuisine   with   a   spectacular   buffet-­‐style  lunch  and  wine  tasting  at  one  of  Matera’s  signature  restaurants,  Latteria  Rizzi.    Then  you  will  have  some  free   time   to   relax   and   settle   in   at   the   Palazzo   Viceconte   before   a   tasty   dinner   at   the   hotel’s   lovely  restaurant.     Be   sure   to   get   plenty   of   rest   tonight   in   preparation   for   the   launch   of   our   cycling   journey  tomorrow.    Day  2  (8-­‐  or  10-­‐day)  Cycling:  Matera-­‐San  Giuliano  Lake  loop  45km/28mi  (long  option  60km/37mi)  Picnic  lunch  or  local  tasting  along  the  route  Dinner:  Ristorante  Rivelli  Lodging:  Matera  –  Palazzo  Viceconte    After   breakfast,   we   will   cycle   out   of   Matera   through   its   La   Martella   district,   in   order   to   avoid   heavy  traffic,   and   then   turn   towards   the   San   Giuliano   oasis,   which   is   under   the   protection   of   the   Italian   branch  of   the   World   Wildlife   Foundation.     The   preserve   covers   about   1000   hectares   and   includes   the   San  Giuliano   Dam   (which   was   built   in   the   1950s   and   was   Basilicata’s   first   artificial   basin)   as   well   as   the  Bradano   River   Ravine.     We   will   stop   along   the   way   for   a   picnic   lunch   or   a   tasting   at   one   of   the   local  establishments.     The   ride   back   to   Matera   can   be   challenging,   so   we   invite   guests   who   would   like   a   more  relaxing  day  to  travel  back  in  the  shuttle.    Upon  return  to  the  hotel,  you  will  have  some  time  to  clean  up  before  a  delicious  dinner  at  Ristorante  Rivelli.    Wow,  what  a  day!    Day  3  (8-­‐  or  10-­‐day)  Cycling:  Laterza-­‐Montescaglioso  50km/31mi  (long  option  to  Ginosa  70km/43mi)  Bakery  visit  Lunch  &  Dinner  on  your  own  with  our  excellent  suggestions  Lodging:  Matera  –  Palazzo  Viceconte    Today’s  ride  will  offer  our  first  taste  of  Puglia.    We  will  ride  along  the  Murgia,  a  limestone  ridge  which  separates   the   regions   of   Basilicata   and   Puglia.     This   dry   and   deserted   area   is   famous   for   its   canyons.    After   leaving   Matera,   we   will   head   southeast   towards   the   town   of   Laterza,   where   we   will   visit   a   local  bakery   to   sample   the   famous   pane   di   Laterza.     You   will   also   have   some   free   time   for   lunch   on   your   own  or   with   travel   companions.     If   you   choose   the   short   cycling   option,   you   will   return   to   Matera   via  Montescaglioso,   home   of   a   powerful   and   prestigious   abbey   which   once   controlled   a   huge   swath   of  surrounding   land.     The   major   climb   into   Montescaglioso   is   worth   it   for   the   opportunity   to   visit   this  enchanting   little   village   where   time   seems   to   have   stopped.     Those   who   choose   the   long   option   will  swing  through  the  small  village  of  Ginosa  before  visiting  Montescaglioso.    You  will  also  see  a  veritable  natural  wonder  –  a  series  of  ravines  created  by  the  erosive  powers  of  rainwater.    As  we  head  back  to  our  hotel,  you  can  breathe  a  sigh  of  relief,  for  the  hard  day  of  cycling  is  over,  and  you  are  free  to  relax  and  dine  on  your  own.    Well  done  on  today’s  activities!    Day  4  (8-­‐  or  10-­‐day)  /  Day  1  (7-­‐day)    If  you  are  starting  your  trip  today,  we  will  meet  in  Bari  in  the  lobby  of  the  Hotel  Leon  d’Oro  (in  front  of  the   main   train   station)   at   10:00   a.m.     You   will   find   your   guide   holding   a   Southern   Visions   sign.     We  suggest  you  arrive  no  later  than  the  night  before.    Please  see  the  end  of  this  itinerary  for  suggestions  on  arriving  to  and  departing  from  the  area,  as  well  as  Bari  hotel  recommendations.    Cycling:  Polignano-­‐San  Vito-­‐Conversano  loop  30km/19mi  
  3. 3. Dinner:  Osteria  Chichibio  Lunch  &  Lodging:  Polignano  –  Hotel  Covo  dei  Saraceni    Those   guests   who   started   their   trip   in   Matera   will   leave   Palazzo   Viceconte   after   breakfast   and   shuttle   to  the   town   of   Polignano,   perched   high   atop   limestone   cliffs   on   Puglia’s   breathtaking   coast.     If   you   are  beginning  your  journey  today,  we  will  meet  in  Bari  for  a  briefing  before  shuttling  to  Polignano  to  join  the  group.     Once   in   Polignano,   we   will   all   check   into   the   Hotel   Covo   dei   Saraceni   to   enjoy   a   lovely   lunch  buffet.    Our  ride  today  will  start  along  the  sea  toward  the  quaint  fishing  village  of  San  Vito,  where  we  will  stop  for  a  coffee  break  before  beginning  the  climb  into  beautiful  Conversano.    From  there,  we  will  cycle   back   to   the   hotel,   where   you   will   have   time   to   freshen   up   and   relax   before   a   gorgeous   group  dinner  at  nearby  Osteria  Chichibio.    Welcome  to  Polignano!    Day  5  (8-­‐  or  10-­‐day)  /  Day  2  (7-­‐day)  Cycling:  Polignano-­‐Conversano-­‐Putignano-­‐Castellana  loop  30km/19mi    (long  option  to  the  Grottoes  55km/34mi,  long  option  to  Noci  70km/43mi)  Dinner  &  Lodging:  Polignano  –  Hotel  Covo  dei  Saraceni    Today  you  will  ride  through  some  of  Italy’s  best-­‐kept  secrets,  once  enjoyed  only  by  local  cyclists.    We  will  leave   Polignano   in   the   direction   of   Conversano   and   take   some   amazing   hidden   routes   to   Putignano,  which  hosts  some  of  Italy’s  greatest  Carnival  celebrations.    We  will  give  you  time  to  soak  in  the  beautiful  surroundings   as   you   enjoy   lunch   on   your   own.     We   will   return   to   the   hotel   via   Castellana,   with   an  optional   afternoon   visit   to   the   stunning   caverns.     Our   more   energetic   cyclists   can   continue   to   Noci  before   heading   back   to   the   hotel.     Whichever   option   you   choose,   you   will   get   a   terrific   Pugliese-­‐style  workout  and  be  very  ready  for  the  dinner  feast  awaiting  us  at  Covo  dei  Saraceni!    Day  6  (8-­‐  or  10-­‐day)  /  Day  3  (7-­‐day)  Cycling:  Polignano-­‐Monopoli-­‐Alberobello-­‐Locorotondo  35km/22mi      (long  option  to  Martina  Franca  65km/40mi)  Alberobello  walking  tour  Lunch  at  a  lovely  authentic  spot  Olive  oil  tasting,  Dinner  &  Lodging:  Pezze  di  Greco  –  Masseria  San  Martino    Today  is  a  big  moving  day  for  us!    We  will  cycle  south  along  the  coast  toward  Monopoli  and  then  turn  inland  to  begin  a  challenging  but  reasonable  climb  through  the  beautiful  countryside  to  our  first  stop,  Alberobello.     This   UNESCO   World   Heritage   Site   is   a   sea   of   1500+   trulli   (whitewashed   houses   with   conical  stone   roofs   unique   to   Puglia).     Here,   we   will   enjoy   a   walking   tour   followed   by   a   delicious   lunch   featuring  several  regional  specialties.    Then,  we  will  climb  back  in  the  saddle  and  head  to  Locorotondo  and  then  downhill  toward  the  sea…make  sure  to  keep  control  of  your  bicycle  because  the  spectacular  views  of  the  stunning  countryside  and  sparkling  Adriatic  will  take  your  breath  away!    You  can  choose  to  head  to  the  hotel  or  take  a  slightly  longer  ride  through  Martina  Franca.    Either  way,  your  destination  is  the  warm  and  inviting   Masseria   San   Martino,   a   restored   farmhouse   nestled   in   a   grove   of   over   2000   olive   trees.     Our  hosts,  Conny  and  Giovanni,  will  blow  you  away  with  their  fabulous  house-­‐made  olive  oils  and  knockout  cuisine.    Day  7  (8-­‐  or  10-­‐day)  /  Day  4  (7-­‐day)  Cycling:  Masseria  San  Martino-­‐Cisternino-­‐Ostuni  loop  40km/25mi    (long  option  along  the  sea  70km/43mi)  
  4. 4. Mozzarella  making  class  &  aperitivo  Dinner:  Pizzeria  Il  Tronco    Lodging:  Pezze  di  Greco  –  Masseria  San  Martino    Our   journey   today   will   take   us   to   Cisternino   and   then   Ostuni,   two   picturesque   hilltop   towns   whose  Greek  influence  is  apparent  in  their  whitewashed  exteriors  and  whose  Italian  heart  is  felt  through  the  people  and  the  cuisine.    We  invite  you  to  enjoy  lunch  on  your  own  in  one  of  the  towns.    After  leaving  Ostuni,  you  may  choose  to  head  directly  back  to  the  hotel  to  relax  before  the  evening’s  activities.    For  those  who  would  like  to  cycle  a  bit  more,  we  will  continue  along  the  coast  through  the  villages  of  Torre  Canne   and   Savelletri.     Our   group   will   rejoin   at   6:30   p.m.   at   Masseria   San   Martino,   where   local   cheese  artisan  Dina  will  meet  us  for  a  mozzarella  making  demonstration  and  tasting.    Be  sure  to  save  room  for  dinner,  as  we  are  heading  to  Pizzeria  Il  Tronco  which  features  the  largest  selection  of  pizzas  in  the  region  –  OVER  140  DIFFERENT  CHOICES!!!    Then  we  will  return  to  the  hotel  to  rest  for  another  activity-­‐filled  day  tomorrow.    Day  8  (8-­‐  or  10-­‐day)  /  Day  5  (7-­‐day)    If   you   are   finishing   your   tour   today,   we   can   arrange   a   shuttle   to   the   Brindisi   or   Bari   airport  or   train  station  at  an  additional  charge.    Transfer  to  Salento  (the  heel  of  the  heel  )  Cycling:  Squinzano-­‐Acaya-­‐San  Foca-­‐Otranto  35,  50,  or  70km/22,  31,  or  43mi  Lunch  at  the  lovely  Trattoria  Acaya  Lodging:  Otranto  –  Relais  Valle  dell’Idro    After   breakfast,   we   will   bid   farewell   to   our   8-­‐day   guests   and   then   shuttle   to   the   beautiful   Masseria  Melcarne,  the  starting  point  for  an  amazing  day  of  cycling  through  the  stark  and  contrasting  beauty  of  the   Salento   area,   home   to   Puglia’s   best   wines.     With   the   warm   sun   overhead   and   the   sea   almost   always  in  view,  this  is  one  of  the  coolest  days  to  be  on  a  bike!    We  can  stop  for  a  swim  at  one  of  the  amazing  beaches  along  the  route  before  hopping  back  on  our  bikes  and  continuing  our  journey.    We  will  also  stop  in   the   famous   castle   city   of   Acaya   for   a   walk   around   and   a   killer   local   lunch.     Our   destination   is   the  ancient  city  of  Otranto,  a  must-­‐see   that’s   one   part   beach   resort,   one   part   Middle   Eastern,   many   parts  Italian,   and   every   part   enjoyable!     After   checking   into   our   hotel,   the   beautiful   Valle   dell’Idro,   you   will  have   some   time   for   a   stroll   by   the   sea   and   dinner   on   your   own   (we   highly   recommend   the   pizza   in  Otranto).    Day  9  (10-­‐day)  /  Day  6  (7-­‐day)  Cycling:  Otranto-­‐Santa  Maria  di  Leuca  50km/31mi      (long  option:  loop  back  to  Otranto  100km/62mi)  Farewell  Dinner:  Ristorante  da  Sergio  Lodging:  Otranto  –  Relais  Valle  dell’Idro    At  Southern  Visions,  we  save  the  best  rides  for  last!    Breathtaking  sea  views,  natural  hot  springs,  hills,  and  pine  forests  make  this  one  of  Italy’s  most  memorable  rides.    We  will  ride  down  to  Santa  Maria  di  Leuca,   which   the   Romans   called   Finnibus   terrae   (the   end   of   the   earth).     Here   you   can   stand   on   the  southernmost   point   of   Puglia   and   gaze   out   to   the   inviting   sea.     On   the   way   down,   we   will   stop   for   a  lovely  cave  tour  and,  as  always,  for  coffee.    Wine  tastings  and  beach  visits  are  also  options  today.    The  serious  rider  who  wants  a  challenge  can  cycle  back  to  Otranto  and  enjoy  the  feeling  of  accomplishment  
  5. 5. that  comes  with  completing  a  full  100km  ride!    Those  of  more  relaxed  persuasions  can  take  the  shuttle  back   to   the   hotel.     Your   day   will   end   with   an   amazing   farewell   dinner   at   Ristorante   da   Sergio,   one   of   the  finest  seafood  restaurants  in  Puglia.    Day  10  (10-­‐day)  /  Day  7  (7-­‐day)  Morning  walking  tour  of  Lecce  Farewell  from  the  Southern  Visions  Team    After   breakfast,   we   will   shuttle   to   Lecce,   known   as   the   Florence   of   the   South,   for   a   walking   tour  highlighting  its  amazing  architectural  gems.    We  will  also  enjoy  a  cappuccino  and  Pasticciotto  Leccesse  (a  signature   local   pastry   filled   with   yummy   custard   cream)   at   Caffè   Alvino,   the   oldest   coffee   bar   in   the  region.     We   will   finish   up   around   12:00   p.m.   and   guide   you   to   the   Lecce   train   station,   shuttle   you   to   the  Brindisi  airport,  or  help  you  extend  your  stay  in  the  area.    We  hope  your  time  in  Puglia  will  have  changed  your  life  for  the  better,  as  it  has  all  of  ours.    WHAT  YOU  GET!!!     • An  outstanding  adventure  travel  experience   • Peace  of  mind  that  you  are  with  the  most  professional  cycling  company  in  Puglia   • Local  guides  with  insider  knowledge  of  the  region’s  secrets  and  mysteries   • 6,  7,  or  9  nights  lodging  at  3-­‐  and  4-­‐star  hotels  and  Bed  &  Breakfasts**   • 6,  7,  or  9  breakfasts**   • 3  or  4  lunches**   • 5,  6,  or  7  dinners**   • Daily  snacks  and  happy  hours   • Guest  shuttles  and  all  luggage  transfers   • Use  of  the  finest  and  best-­‐maintained  bikes  in  Southern  Italy   • Thorough  briefing  and  bike  fitting   • Exceptional,  detailed  maps  and  route  notes   • Daily  special  activities   o 2  or  3  professional  walking  tours**   o Mozzarella  making  demonstration  &  tasting  with  local  cheese  artisan   o Olive  grove  walk  &  oil  tasting     **Number  of  these  amenities  depends  on  the  length  of  trip  you  choose    Services  available  at  additional  cost     • Optional  shuttles  from/to  Bari  or  Brindisi  airport  or  train  station   • Room  upgrades   • Rental  of  prepaid  local  cellular  phone          
  6. 6. Arrival  and  Departure  Logistics    After  reviewing  the  following  information,  please  inform  us  of  your  arrival  and  departure  plans.    Please  be  sure  to  note  these  important  contact  numbers,  in  case  you  need  assistance  before,  during,  or  after  your  trip  –  Puglia:  +39  340  264  4128  or  +39  392  185  7704;  USA  +1  800  737  5760.    Flight  arrangements    We  recommend  flying  into  Milan  or  Rome.    You  can  catch  a  flight  to  Bari  (airport  code:  BRI)  or  Brindisi  (airport  code:  BDS)  from  either  city.    Or,  if  you  prefer  to  see  the  countryside  and  perhaps  enjoy  a  pre-­‐tour  stay  in  another  Italian  destination,  you  can  make  your  way  to  Puglia  by  train.    The  trip  from  Rome  takes  about  5  hours;  from  Florence,  it’s  about  7  ½  hours;  from  Milan,  expect  approximately  8  ½  hours  of  travel.    Transportation  between  the  Bari  airport  and  train  station    A   taxi   ride   between   the   airport   and   train   station   takes   25-­‐30   minutes   and   costs   around   €20.     An  Autolinee  Tempesta  bus  takes  approximately  30  minutes  and  costs  €4.15.    Booking  Italian  train  travel    You   can   purchase   Italian   rail   tickets   from   any   train   station   in   Italy.     Many   stations   are   equipped   with  automatic   ticket   machines,   from   which   you   can   purchase   tickets   and   reservation   coupons   for   travel  throughout  Italy  and  for  principal  cross-­‐border  routes.    The  machines  accept  cash,  credit  card,  or  ATM  card   with   PIN.     There   are   sometimes   unpredicted   system   outages   in   the   smaller   stations,   so   we  recommend  booking  your  entire  journey  in  advance  of  your  trip  (see  below)  or  at  a  major  train  station  at  the  start  of  your  trip.    For  more  information  on  train  travel  in  Italy,  visit    There  you  can  purchase  tickets  and   make   seat   reservations   with   your   credit   card.     There   is   also   a   great   website   called   where   you   can   purchase   individual   rail   tickets   as   well   as   rail   passes.     Another  option  is  to  purchase  tickets  and  make  reservations  through  your  own  travel  agent.    If   you   travel   on   one   of   Italy’s   faster   trains,   such  as   Eurocity,   Intercity,   or   Eurostar,   you’ll   be   charged   a  supplemental  fare  in  addition  to  the  regular  ticket  price.    If  you  travel  on  one  of  these  trains  without  a  supplemented  ticket,  you’ll  be  fined.    Don’t  panic,  though;  it  is  almost  impossible  not  to  get  the  proper  ticket   nowadays,   especially   if   you   buy   online   or   from   a   machine,   where   the   supplement   is   automatically  included  in  the  cost.    Intercity   and   Eurostar   trains   require   a   seat   reservation.     Reserving   a   seat   is   not   mandatory   on   other  trains;   however,   you   may   want   to   pay   the   extra   charge   for   a   guaranteed   seat,   especially   if   you   travel  during  a  peak  period  or  local  holiday.    Otherwise,  you  risk  having  to  stand  for  a  part  or  all  of  your  trip.    On   Italy’s   slower   trains   (Rapido,   Espresso,   Regionale,   Inter   Regionale,   and   Locale),   reservations   and  supplemental  tickets  are  not  necessary.        
  7. 7. Boarding  the  train    The  platform  number  will  be  listed  at  least  10  minutes  prior  to  departure  on  the  small  TV  screens  and  larger   schedule   boards   in   the   main   station   area.     If   you   are   traveling   without   a   seat   reservation,   you   will  need  to  validate  your  “open”  ticket  by  stamping  it  at  one  of  the  small  yellow  machines  located  on  each  train  platform  (the  machine  stamps  the  date  and  time  on  the  open  ticket  to  prevent  multiple  uses).    If  you   forget   to   stamp   your   ticket   before   boarding,   tell   the   on-­‐board   inspector   immediately   to   avoid   a  supplementary  fee.    WHERE  TO  STAY  BEFORE  &  AFTER  YOUR  TOUR    BARI        PALACE  HOTEL     HOTEL  ADRIA    Via  Francesco  Lombardi  13     Via  Zuppetta  10    70122  Bari     70121  Bari    Tel  +39  080  521  6551     Tel  +39  080  524  6699      GRAND  HOTEL  LEON  D’ORO     HOTEL  BOSTON    Piazza  Aldo  Moro  4     Via  Piccinni  155    70122  Bari     70122  Bari    Tel  +39  080  523  5040     Tel  +39  080  521  6633      HOTEL  VILLA  ROMANAZZI      Via  Giuseppe  Capruzzi  326      70124  Bari      Tel  +39  080  542  7400        MATERA        LA  CASA  DI  LUCIO     HOTEL  RIDOLA    Via  San  Pietro  Caveoso  66     Via  Morelli  13    75100  Matera     75100  Matera    Tel  +39  083  531  2798     Tel  +39  083  531  8811      HOTEL  SANT’ANGELO     ALBERGO  DEL  SEDILE    Piazza  San  Pietro  Caveoso     Recinto  Sedile  4  (Piazza  del  Sedile)    75100  Matera     75100  Matera    Tel  +39  083  531  4010     Tel  +39  083  533  3436                  
  8. 8.    LOCANDA  DI  SAN  MARTINO     HOTEL  IN  PIETRA    Via  Fiorentini  71   Via  San  Giovanni  Vecchio  22    75100  Matera     75100  Matera    Tel  +39  083  525  6600     Tel  +39  083  534  4040        ALBERGO  ITALIA      Via  Ridola  5      75100  Matera      Tel  +39  083  533  3561        LECCE        HOTEL  PATRIA  PALACE     GRAND  HOTEL  TIZIANO    Piazzetta  Riccardi     Viale  Porto  dEuropa    73100  Lecce     73100  Lecce    Tel  +39  083  224  5111     Tel  +39  083  227  2111      HOTEL  DELLE  PALME     B&B  PALAZZO  ROLLO    Via  Leuca  90     Via  Vittorio  Emanuele  II  14    73100  Lecce     73100  Lecce    Tel  +39  083  234  7171     Tel  +39  083  230  7152