Self - Guided Walking in Puglia and Matera Trip Notes

Ways to Travel:
Self-Guided
Destinations:
Italy
Programmes:
Walking & Trekking
Trip Code:
LTY
Activity Rating - Leisurely/Moderate
Leisurely / Moderate

You are reasonably fit, enjoy the outdoors and are looking for some exercise. Some previous experience is preferable for activity based trips.

Days Flight Inclusive
8 Days Land only
12 Min age

Trip Overview

Puglia is a land forged in history by an incredible mixture of civilisations and cultures. From the unique 'trulli' style houses of Alberobello, the cave houses (Sassi) in Matera, to the beautiful White City of Ostuni. This independent walking trip allows you to discover the beauty of the region at your own relaxed pace. There is plenty of time to appreciate the magnificent coastline and spend lingering afternoons savouring the traditional cuisine.

At a Glance

2 nights in 3-star hotels, 3 nights in charming B & Bs and 2 nights in a typical Trullo

Trip Highlights

  • Visit the UNESCO sites of Matera and Alberobello
  • Discover mouth-watering local food and wine
  • Charming hotels in great locations
  • Walks are optional with plenty of time to discover each destination

Is This Trip for You?

This is a self-guided tour; you can walk at your own pace (we recommend taking plenty of time to rest and enjoy the views!). However, on some of the walks the terrain encountered is similar to the one you would find on a moderate walking trip, hence the Leisurely/Moderate grade. Activity Level: 2 (Leisurely/Moderate). Average daily walk: 10km (6 miles) No. of days walking: 5 (2 days optional) Terrain & route: The terrain and type of path will vary between manmade paved tracks, tarmac and gravel. All walks take between 3 and 6 hours including lunch stops and require a moderate level of fitness. Please be aware that Puglia can be very warm, possibly exceeding 30 degrees in the summer. Vehicle Support: This is a self-guided trip for those who prefer to walk independently, but with our assistance to take out the stress of the logistics and planning. We arrange your accommodations, provide you with route notes so that you can walk at your own pace, while your bags are transported from one hotel to the next. A representative will be there to meet you and will be on call throughout the trip should you need. As this is a self-guided holiday there is no group and no leader. There may be others on the same departure date as you, but you will not be organised together. The route notes contain an emergency assistance telephone number should you need it and in emergencies, the local representative is normally able to dispatch a taxi or pick you up themselves. They may wish to charge for this service.

Group

As this is a self-guided holiday there is no group and no leader. This tour is managed by the local operator who will be on hand to assist you and highlight particular places of interest. The route notes contain an emergency assistance telephone number. In an emergency, the hotel is normally able to dispatch a taxi or pick you up themselves. They may wish to charge for this service.

Adult min age:
12

Itinerary

Map LTY

Land Only

Start City:
Matera
End City:
Lecce

Land Only Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Start Matera.

    Make your way to Matera from Bari or Brindisi airport. Spend the night in a charming hotel in the old city centre of this UNESCO World Heritage site.

  • Day 2

    Beautiful morning hike to rock churches on the Murgia plateau.

    This morning take a transfer and then a scenic walk to discover the Murgia plateau facing Matera, and take some time to admire the impressive rock churches of the 8th Century. This area is perfect for a spot of birdwatching as you walk amongst the pastures and stone farmhouses, keeping your eyes out for birds of prey as you go. In the afternoon enjoy a guided visit of the 'Sassi' area of the town. Overnight in Matera. Distance 7km, approx. 2 hours walking. Ascent 150m, descent 150m.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 7 km / 4 miles
  • Day 3

    Morning transfer to Alberobello; afternoon tasting of wine and typical regional products.

    Take a morning transfer to Alberobello, a UNESCO World Heritage site, an intriguing city populated by dry stone dwellings known as 'trulli', nestled in amongst the beautifully exotic Itria Valley. Enjoy a wine and local product tasting, and, subject to availability, spend the night in a typical 'Trullo' in the historical centre of Alberobello.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 4

    Follow an old aqueduct through the Itria Valley, amongst ancient olive trees, vineyards and trulli.

    Today you walk along an old aqueduct towards Locorotondo, through the gently rolling countryside of the Itria Valley. Walk through ancient olive groves, vineyards and trulli. Take a short (15 minute) train ride back to Alberobello. Distance 13km, approx. 4 hours walking. Ascent 100m, descent 100m.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 13 km / 8 miles
  • Day 5

    Transfer to Ostuni; the ‘White City’; optional loop walk.

    Private transfer to Ostuni. This striking hilltop village, a short distance from the sparkling Adriatic sea, is known as the 'White City' due to its fortress of whitewashed buildings clustered together on the hillside. Ostuni's charm lies within the enchanting maze of Greek-style narrow streets, displaying some beautiful Mediterranean architecture. Enjoy a free afternoon with time to discover this enchanting town.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Dinner
  • Day 6

    Transfer to Ostuni train station and train to Lecce; optional walk in the city.

    Take a private transfer to Ostuni train station and a train (60 mins) to Lecce. Enjoy some free time to discover the main monuments of the Salento region's capital, characterized by the baroque style. Optional city walk in the afternoon.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 7

    Train to Otranto and hike along the coastline.

    Take a morning train or bus to Otrano, a little seaside village facing the Adriatic sea and known as the gateway to the Orient. The Cathedral houses an impressive 'Tree of Life' mosaic which covers its entire floor, and is well worth a visit. Hike along the coastline, discovering the imposing coastal watchtowers, and appreciating the beautiful plantlife. Take a train or bus back to Lecce and spend the night there. Distance 11km, approx. 4 hours walking, ascent 100m, descent 100m.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 11 km / 6 miles
  • Day 8

    End Lecce

    End in Lecce after breakfast.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast

Accommodation

Hotels

All the hotels on this trip have been specially selected for their location and character. Located in the heart of the historical centre, the B & B in Lecce is found in a 17th Century palace, and in Alberobello we use a family-run hotel in beautifully restored 'trulli' houses.

Single supplement from £170.00

Food & Transport

Eating & Drinking

All breakfasts and 1 dinner (in a typical Puglian farmhouse) on day 4 are included. There is also a wine and local product tasting. In Puglia you will find genuine regional cooking that has strong links to the land and the sea. To give you an example of the types of food on offer in Puglia: simple, tasty dishes such as the pasta delicacy “orecchiette” served with a sauce of turnip-tops or fresh tomato and sheep’s ricotta-cheese, “cavatelli” with pulses, aubergine and parmesan bake, courgettes “alla poverella” - marinated in oil, garlic, mint and vinegar, etc., to accompany grilled fish, seafood, horse-meat chops, lamb, “burrata” (soft mozzarella and cream cheese), mozzarella and “caciocavallo” sheep’s cheese... plus excellent wines. This region is a food lovers paradise!

Transportation

Public transport is used along with some private transfers (taxi or minibus, depending on group size).

Weather & Seasonality

When to go

The Puglia region of Southern Italy enjoys a wonderful Mediterranean climate with all year round sunshine and just enough rainfall to ensure that the green is never too far off. Although Puglia covers a large area it is long and narrow - not more than 30km across. This means that you're never far from the sea which has a moderating effect on the weather.

Weather Information

The Puglia region of Southern Italy enjoys a wonderful Mediterranean climate with all year round sunshine and just enough rainfall to ensure that the green is never too far off. Although Puglia covers a large area it is long and narrow - not more than 30km across. This means that you're never far from the sea which has a moderating effect on the weather.

Weather Charts

Joining Instructions

Travelling land only: 8 days starting in Matera and ending in Lecce

Your trip normally starts at our hotel in Matera on the afternoon of Day 1 of the itinerary. Details of how to reach the start hotel are given in the Final Joining Instructions. 

Full joining instructions including route notes, hotel list  and local emergency numbers will be sent to you as part of our Final Joining Instructions. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.  Please note maps will be provided upon arrival at your start hotel.

Flights from the UK
We do not offer any package flights on this trip. We can recommend booking low cost airline Easyjet to Bari. British Airways also fly from London Gatwick to Bari (not every day) whilst Alitalia fly to both Bari and Brindisi (indirect).
Low cost airline Ryanair flies from London Stansted to Brindisi and Bari. This may be a convenient and good value option for some clients. 

Regional Flights

The Flight Inclusive price is based on a London departure, but we are happy to tailor this to your local or regional airport. Please ask about flights from local or regional airports.

If booking regional flights other than with Exodus, you must allow a minimum connecting time (in addition to the international check in time) of 1 hour at Gatwick, and 1.5 hours at Heathrow; this is longer than the official minimum, but baggage handling is known to be subject to delays.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers will be sent to you as part of our Final Joining Instructions. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

Transfers Details

Airport transfers are not included on this trip.

The easiest way to reach Matera from the UK is to fly to Bari airport. From here, it is only 40 miles away.
There is a bus service running from Bari airport to Matera, called the Pugliairbus (transfer about 75 min. - ticket: €7 (http://www.aeroportidipuglia.it/bus-pugliairbus).
Alternatively, you can take a train to the main railway station - journey time: 15 minutes; ticket price: €5. The latest timetable is available on the airport website: http://treni.aeroportidipuglia.it/Default.aspx . From the station take an onward train to Matera - journey time is 90 min, ticket price €5 (www.fal-srl.it ). If you are already in Italy and would like to reach Bari by train, the journey from Rome takes about 5 hours and from Florence, it’s about 7 ½ hours. Trains timetable can be found on www.trenitalia.com
It may be possible for us to arrange a private arrival and departure transfer. This will need to be requested so prices can vary - please ask your sales consultant at the time of booking.

Location start:
Matera
Location end:
Lecce

What to Take

Essential Equipment

Small rucksack (for water bottle, camera etc)

Lightweight waterproof jacket and wind stopper

Trail shoes or walking boots with sturdy sole

Long walking trousers as some paths may be overgrown

A warm jumper or fleece

Sun hat and other sun protection equipment

Optional Equipment

Walking poles

A small umbrella in case of unexpected showers

Swimming costume

Practical Information

Passport

Italy

All nationalities require a full passport that must be valid beyond the intended length of stay. It is your responsibility to have the correct personal documents and to obtain your own visa, if one is necessary, in accordance with the regulations of the country you are to visit. The information offered below is to help you with that process. We are not responsible for the actions of local immigration and customs officials, whether at points of entry or otherwise, and any subsequent effects.

Certain European nationalities may be able to travel within Europe on their national identity card. Check carefully with the relevant authorities if you intend to do this.

Visa

Italy

No visa required for British passport holders.
Please note in Italy it is compulsory to carry ID with you at all times.

Visa regulations can change without notice: please check the current regulations in good time to obtain a visa if one is required.

There are no specific health risks on this trip.

Vaccination

Italy

There are no specific health risks.

Travel health can often be something people forget about before going away, but a little preparation and knowledge can go a long way to help you stay fit and healthy while abroad.

The above information can change at short notice; as we are not qualified to answer all your questions about travel health we strongly recommend you contact your Medical Professional or a Travel Health Clinic at least 8 weeks prior to departure for up-to-date information.

For additional information please visit: https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries

Insurance - are you adequately covered?

It is a condition of joining any of our holidays that you must be fully insured against medical and personal accident risks (to include repatriation costs and air ambulance or helicopter rescue services where appropriate). On arrival in destination for your trip, you will ask to present details to your leader or local representative of your policy.

If you are resident in the UK we strongly recommend the Exodus travel insurance policy, this is specifically designed to cover all activities on your trip. If arranging your own policy please ensure that you are covered for all activities that are part of the trip, optional activities that you intend to take part in and/or on high altitude itineraries, that you are covered up to the maximum altitude of the trip.

If you are a UK citizen and travelling in Europe you should obtain the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) from your Post Office. This gives you medical care at a reduced cost, and some cases for free, in many European countries, but should not be considered a substitute for adequate insurance.

Local Time

Italy's Timezone:
Europe/Rome CEST (GMT +02:00)

Electricity

Italy's Electricity:

European plug ‐ 2 round pins.

Money

Italy's Currency

The national currency of Italy is the Euro (EUR), with an exchange rate at the time of publication of approximately 1.2 to the UK£ and 0.9 to the US$.

Exchange rates are correct at the time of publication.

 

ATM Availability

In every town you can withdraw the local currency from a Cash Machine (ATM) but we do recommend you obtain some of your spending money in Euros before you leave the UK. Credit cards are also accepted in most places you visit but cash is easier.

Extra Expenses & Spending Money

For lunches and dinners not included, please allow about €170 depending on the standard of restaurant chosen.
LOCAL TAXES: many Italian cities have recently introduced a tourist tax for non-residents. The local administration is in charge of the tax, which will be collected by the accommodation provider at check-in or check-out. This fee varies depending on the hotel category, the season and number of days of stay. It is usually between 1 and 4 euros per person per night. For this trip, please allow approx. €7-10 for the week.

Responsible Tourism

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Exodus Community

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In the Community Travel Forum you'll find the Departure Lounge where you can discuss your trip with fellow travellers before you depart. When you get back from your holiday remember to upload your images to the relevant trip page on our website. This helps other people see what our holidays are really like and you'll be entered automatically into our monthly photo competition.

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Important Information

On all guided trips

Although our leaders are well trained to deal with different capabilities, if they have any concerns about someone’s ability to safely partake in an activity, or their impact on other people’s enjoyment, we authorise them to take necessary action which, in some circumstances, may involve asking someone to miss that activity.

Although rarely enforced, by booking this trip you agree to section 16 of our Booking Conditions which clearly states that our leaders have the authority to do this. In these circumstances we will ensure anyone sitting out is safely provided for and offered alternative options where possible. Refunds will not be provided for activities missed and customers may be liable for additional costs incurred.

On all trips

In booking this trip you should be confident in your ability to participate in all activities described in these Trip Notes. If you have any doubt about your suitability you should call the Exodus office and ask to speak to one of the experts on this itinerary.

In an emergency, please contact our 24 hour out of hours service on +44 (0) 844 326 7041.

Every time that you travel abroad you should take the time to read the warnings in the essential information in the brochure.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers, and details of how to reach the start point, will be sent to you approximately 2 to 3 weeks prior to departure. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

The information in these Trip Notes is given in good faith. Where differences exist between the Trip Notes and our current brochure or website, the Trip Notes supersede the brochure and website. All holidays can be subject to unexpected changes; in order to enjoy them you should be prepared to be flexible where necessary. Occasionally, as stated in our brochure, it may not be possible to follow the itinerary as planned. This may be for a variety of reasons - climatic, political, physical or other. In these circumstances we will make the best possible alternative arrangements that maintain the integrity of the original itinerary.

As fuel prices, airport taxes and exchange rates fluctuate, and airlines manage their rates to match demand, it is proving harder than ever to guarantee our Flight Inclusive prices. Although we endeavour to keep our website as accurate as possible, daily fluctuations mean that our Flight Inclusive price may be out of date. For accurate prices we recommend that you contact one of our Travel Experts, or your Travel Agent.

The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) Travel Advice Service advises British tourists on the potential dangers they might experience when travelling overseas. We liaise closely with them and adhere to their travel advice. For up-to-date advice on all countries, please visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice. Should there be any change to advice prior to or during travel, we may have to cancel or curtail a tour at short notice, or re-route an itinerary part way through.

How to Book

1. Check availability

Go online to check availability, or contact us by phone or email.

2. Secure your place

You can provisionally hold a place on this trip, usually for between three and seven days.

3. Complete your booking and payment

When you're ready to book, go to www.exodus.co.uk for online booking, book over the phone or you can complete a booking form (available online or on request by calling us). We accept all major credit and debit cards, or you can pay be cheque. Book with confidence: Exodus is fully licensed and bonded as a tour operator. We hold Air Traffic Organisers Licence (ATOL) number 2582 issued and bonded with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). We are also bonded to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and we are members of the Federation of Tour Operators (FTO) and ABTA ‐ The Travel Association. This means you can book your Exodus holiday with confidence, as all monies paid to us for your trip are fully protected.