Cycle from the UNESCO town of Matera along an idyllic coastline to Lecce
Nestled between the Adriatic and Ionian seas, lies the captivating region of Puglia, also known as the 'Heel of the Italy's boot'. For centuries this stretch of land has been the gateway to the East and has been home to numerous civilizations, including Greeks, Romans, Spanish and Turks, who have left a deep mark in the architecture, food and local dialects.
Our journey starts in the fascinating city of Matera, famous for its cave-and-stone Sassi houses, inhabited since the Prehistoric times. We leave behind this rocky and arid land and cycle towards the picture-postcard town of Alberobello, in the heart of the flourishing Itria Valley. Scattered across green rolling hills and dry-stone walls, funny-looking Trulli houses still stand after 5,000 years and millions of ancient olive trees stretch as far as the eye can see. The remainder of the journey takes us to the Salentinian Peninsula, a favourite among Italians for its idyllic coastline, crystal clear water and charming towns. From the white hilltop town of Ostuni, overlooking the Adriatic, we cycle to Gallipoli, floating on a limestone island in the Ionian Sea, and, riding past olive groves and limestone cliffs, we reach Lecce, a beautiful Baroque city, known as the Florence of the South.
National Geographic: 'Best of the World' List
Puglia has been nominated one of National Geographic’s Best of the World destinations for 2014. The list reflects what’s authentic, culturally rich, sustainable and superlative in the world of travel today.