Puglia and Matera

The Pleasures of Puglia

A Get-away to Italy’s splendid Deep South

An itinerary perfect for those who have seen Italy’s main attractions and are seeking something truly off the beaten track. Indeed, it takes a bit longer to travel from one place to another throughout the Puglia region and driving can be a tad challenging (unless you enjoy getting lost!).
To ensure a relaxing trip, engaging the services of a qualified, friendly driver is highly recommended, especially if you don’t have much time at your disposal.

4 nights in the Fasano countryside

Day 1 - Arrival to Puglia in the late morning

Private transfer from the Bari or Brindisi airport to a countryside lodging.
Accommodation is at an elegant countryside inn (masseria) on a bed and breakfast basis. This small but fully-serviced accommodation offers a bevy of services, including a restaurant, bar, garden, family rooms, satellite TV, and DVD library (with +1000 titles) and more. In downtime, guests can also enjoy the gym, solarium, massages, children’s playground, library, billiards room, ping-pong, whirlpool bathtub, bicycle rides, Turkish bath, scuba diving and even head to the nearby beach club, golf course, or indoor or outdoor heated pool.

Dinner in hotel.  Supplement for half board dinner at the hotel can be paid directly for 4 courses from an à la carte menu.

Day 2 - Full day excursion to Matera (8-hours)

After meeting your private driver and local guide, travel west for about 1.5 hours to the region of Basilicata and the stunning town of Matera. In the 2019 Capitale della Cultura, visit the Sassi of Matera consisting of the old town, where you will see houses hewn out of rock and buildings made with the local tufa stone. The Matera area was already inhabited in the Paleolithic era, specifically on the hill in front of the town, where there are some entrenched villages such as Murgia Timone. There is the chance to “get lost” in the narrow alleys of the old town, where you will meet locals selling typical food such as peperoni cruschi, a distinct dry and sweet red pepper, or find handmade objects such as the typical rooster-shaped whistles. Not to be missed is the chance to have lunch in a typical restaurant. Guests shall be returned to the hotel in late afternoon.

Dinner in hotel. Supplement for half board dinner at the hotel can be paid directly for 4 courses from an à la carte menu. 

Day 3 - Full-day excursion to Lecce and Ostuni (8-hours)

Travel south to the heart of the Salento region to Lecce. The town was built from local limestone in Renaissance, Baroque and Rococo styles. In a rosy pink color, the city impresses with its intricate building decorations. Visit some of the major landmarks and explore the elegant streets lined with local handicrafts, such as items in papier-mâché or Leccese stone. Free time for lunch with suggestions. A special cheese to taste is the caciotta leccese along with the typical puff pastry rustico. For those with a sweet tooth, one must is the pasticciotto leccese, a delicious custard pie.

In the afternoon, visit Ostuni whose most distinguishing characteristic – and the reason for taking the epithet La Città Bianca – is its uniformly white buildings. Originally, the practice of lime-washing the town served as a means of lightening up the dark, labyrinthine mediaeval streets but in the 17th century, it became a matter of life and death as it was used to limit the depredations of the plague. Wandering through the streets today, visitors are charmed by Ostuni’s mediaeval layout. The views from Ostuni are, by themselves, reason enough to make the trip. Wonderful vistas abound from all angles, the best of which offer 360-degree panoramas of the surrounding countryside and the Adriatic Sea. Return to hotel in the late afternoon.

This evening enjoy a dinner transfer to a nearby town, with driver at the guests’ disposal for 3 hours. During this time, enjoy perhaps a romantic dinner in Savelletri or fine dining in the historical center of Monopoli.

Day 4 - Full-day excursion to Alberobello, Locorotondo and Polignano a Mare (8-hours)

With a private driver and guide, visit Alberobello – the capital of the Trulli. This town has the typical cone-shaped roof houses, listed by UNESCO in 1996. Stroll through the narrow alleys of the two districts of Aia Piccola and Rione Monti. Taste the typical products in one of the Trullo stores. Possibility visit a nearby olive oil farm or a local winery. After lunch, head to Locorotondo, the white studded jewel and land of Puglia’s superb white wine! The last stop will be Polignano a Mare, a picturesque village from the middle ages, where the Adriatic coast can be admired and one of best gelatos in Puglia can be savored. Return to the hotel in late afternoon.

Dinner in hotel. Supplement for half board dinner at the hotel can be paid directly for 4 courses from an à la carte menu.

Day 5 - Departure

In the morning check out.

Depending on airline scheduling private transfer to Bari or Brindisi airport to conclude your southern get-away.