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Self Guided Cycling Tour Italy

Enjoy a week by bike to explore the fairytale land of Trulli, a hilly area with a mild climate and gentle profiles! Its rural landscape is much loved by the local cyclists, not only for its beauty and variety. Starting from Alberobello, a UNESCO World Heritage for its pretty and mysterious houses, you will cycle in the green heart of Puglia, reaching within a few kilometers enchanting little towns and hidden wonders. Art, nature, and the gorgeous flavors of the Itria Valley will fill your body and soul!

Key information

  • Trip type: self-guided
  • Lodging: point to point
  • Terrain: mostly flat with wavy lines
  • Starts in Alberobello
  • Ends in: Ostuni
  • Difficulty level: easy (cyclist does not need to have a certain level of fitness, mostly flat terrain though occasionally, they will ride in unpaved or hills, 10-30 miles per day)
  • Total distance: about 106 miles / 170 kilometers
  • Type of bike: road bike, hybrid bike, e-bike
  • E-bike: available to rent / 180 EUR

Highlights

  • 6 days of cycling
  • Ride across the Trulli land
  • Explore the nature of Puglia between land and sea
  • Experience the wonders of the hinterland, food and wine, and local specialties
  • Cycle through beautiful and candid villages
  • Luggage transportation service
  • 7 nights' accommodation
  • Tasty breakfasts daily

Skill level

  • Beginner

Styles


6 days with instruction
Airport transfer available:
Bari Karol Wojtyła Airport (US$79 per person)
Airport transfer available:
Brindisi – Salento Airport (US$79 per person)
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Accommodation

The tour offers accommodation in charming Trulli and four-star hotels. All rooms are ensuite.

  • 3 nights in Alberobello
  • 2 nights in Martina Franca
  • 2 nights in Ostuni

Program

Day 1: Alberobello

Alberobello will welcome you in this beautiful valley with its thousand cones upside down toward the sky. The history of these ancient rural buildings with conical shapes, each distinguished by strange symbols and pinnacles of various forms mingle easily with local myths and legends.

Some late studies associate Alberobello to the Turkish town of Harran, in Kurdistan, where similar houses are made with blocks of soil baked in the sun. Piazza Martellotta divides the city between the more touristic and suggestive part in Rione Monti and the most authentic and calm in Aia Piccola. Overnight in Alberobello.

Day 2: Cycle to Putignano and Castellana Grotte (About 35 kilometers)

Today, you will know one of the principal phenomena of this territory, the karst stone with its rock formations. Following gentle undulations, oak forests, vineyards, and olive trees, you will cycle up to the largest karst caves in Italy.

The magnificent caves of Castellana are a truly unique experience: they run underground for over three kilometers in an atmosphere between evocative power and magic, reflections with stalagmites and stalactites grown with ancestral rhythms. Another night among Trulli is awaiting you.

Day 3: Bike loop via Locorotondo (About 20 kilometers)

Few kilometers of gentle ups and downs to reach Lorocotondo, a small white village whose wonderful balcony overlooks the heart of the Itria Valley. The lands here are devoted to the cultivation of vines, which with the help of the sun produce a light and fresh white wine of high quality: the Locorotondo Doc.

Have a walk in its old town and take your time for a careful and tasting food and wine research in one of the small restaurants that the center hides. Going back to Alberobello for your last night here, try to don’t miss the amazing sunset over the Trulli from one of its panoramic terraces.

Day 4: From Alberobello to Martina Franca (About 20 kilometers)

The route is almost completely flat, the only ascent will be the one that will take you to the town of Martina Franca. San Martino is the patron saint of the city, from which it takes its name. The name "Franca", which means "free of expenses", was given by Prince Philip of Anjou in the 14th century, to exempt the city from paying taxes.

Besides the arch entrance of the old town, along the main street, a rich and elegant scenery of striking buildings and churches will open up. Here, the typical Baroque becomes almost Rococò, and combining with the white lime creates an entirely unique style full of exotic charm.

To satisfy eyes and palate, don’t miss the famous local products: the Capocollo, Puglia appreciated cold cut, Slow Food Presidium since 2007, and the Bocconotto, sweet shortbread with a cream and black cherry heart, to taste strictly at Café Nuova Tripoli. Overnight in Martina Franca.

Day 5: Bike loop via Cisternino (About 30 kilometers)

Cycling in this fairytale land, surrounded by gentle undulations full of vineyards and cultivated fields, you will reach Cisternino, one of the “Most Beautiful Villages of Italy”. This small town is well known in the Itria Valley for its mazy oriental charm, reflected in the alleys, arches, courtyards, and stairways of its four old districts. This spontaneous and unique architecture branches around Clock Tower Square.

A truly local eating experience here is the Fornello, the barbecuing butcher: you'll choose your meat, take a seat, and wait with a carafe of local wine! Before returning to Martina Franca for your last night there, you will cycle along a stretch of the new Greenway of the Puglia aqueduct, the longest in Europe.

Day 6: From Martina Franca to Ostuni via Ceglie Messapica (About 35 kilometers)

A day dedicated to the town of Ceglie Messapica, a small town where art and food coexist harmoniously. In the center, a Norman Tower over 30 meters high overlooks the entire complex. All around an ancient and surreal atmosphere that ranges from the time of Messapians ancestors to Medieval times.

Ceglie is considered the gastronomic capital of the Itria valley, stop for lunch at one of its restaurants and check it for yourself! From the mashed Fava beans accompanied by wild vegetables to the special Cookie of Ceglie, a Slow Food product, you will eat like locals do every day.

Great help for digestion, a ride towards Ostuni, the White City par excellence. The custom of whitewashing the walls with lime dates back to the Middle Ages, to make brighter and fresher the narrow alleys. Besides being a natural disinfectant, lime prevented the spread of the plague when an epidemic broke out in the 17th century. Overnight in Ostuni.

Day 7: In the Natural Park Dune Costiere (About 30 kilometers)

Nature will relax you today thanks to the beauty of the Natural Park Dune Costiere. A slice of heaven between the land and the sea, here the dunes preserve many natural habitats. Not only fossil dunes but also long and beautiful beaches, fragrant Mediterranean vegetation, ponds, and wetlands, archaeological sites of historical and cultural significance, historic farms and oil mills, rock settlements, and more.

On the way back, you will find an authentic Masseria among century-old olive trees for a surprising guided tour with extra virgin olive oil tasting. On the road uphill, you will reach Ostuni again.

Day 8: Ostuni

After breakfast, end of services. If you have not already done so, try to look for the shop of the master craftsman, Tonino Zurlo, and his fine works in olive wood.

Tour program variations

Due to organizational reasons, weather conditions, or provisions issued by local authorities, the itinerary may be subject to some changes before and/or during the holiday. Along the way, you may find temporary deviations (for example road works) which cannot be foreseen, in this case, each biker can decide autonomously how to deal with these stretches.

Grade: Mostly flat with wavy lines

This Puglia bike tour is suitable for anyone with a minimum of training to the bicycle. The daily mileage goes from 20 to 35 kilometers and you can stop at your leisure, or according to the advice, for visits and refreshments. The bike will be a way to work off the good food and enjoy the many landscapes offered by this land. There will also be strictly cultural moments and the possibility of a refreshing swim in the clear sea of Puglia.

Support

The morning of the second day, after breakfast, you will have a welcome briefing with bike fitting. Slow Active Tours will take care of your luggage while you are cycling. In case of need, you can call the emergency number from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Anytime, staff will be available to make your holiday quiet and serene.

Location

This cycling tour will take place in Italy. The tour will start in Alberobello and end in Ostuni. You will be cycling to various destinations in the Itria Valley including Martina Franca, Putignano, Grotte di Castellana, Locorotondo, Cisternino, Ceglie Messapica, Parco Dune Costiere, and more. Alberobello is easily reachable by public transport, car, and by air.

Food

Daily breakfasts and two tastings are included. All other meals and drinks are not included.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

What's included

  • Welcome briefing and bike fitting
  • Travel App (maps, tracks, route notes)
  • Olive oil tasting and guided visit on Day 7
  • Typical products and wine tasting
  • 7 nights accommodation
  • Daily breakfast
  • Hotel-to-hotel luggage transportation
  • Phone assistance (08:00 - 21:00)

What's not included

  • Airfare
  • All other meals and drinks
  • Entrance fees and tips
  • Insurance
  • Hotel tourist taxes (about 14 EUR)
  • Trek bike (80 EUR per person)
  • All-road bike (130 EUR per person)
  • E-bike 150 (EUR per person)
  • Transfer Bari/Brindisi Airport-Alberobello (Minimum of 2 pax: 70 EUR per person)
  • Transfer Ostuni-Bari Airport (Minimum of 2 pax: 80 EUR per person)
  • Transfer Ostuni-Brindisi Airport (Minimum of 2 pax: 50 EUR per person)
  • Extra night in a double room (Low Season: 65 EUR per person | Mid Season: 75 EUR per person | High Season: 80 EUR per person)
  • Extra night in a single room (Low Season: 100 EUR per person | Mid Season 115 EUR per person | High Season: 125 EUR per person)

How to get there

Recommended Airports

Arrival by train or bus

Buses and trains of the Trenitalia easily connect Alberobello with the railway stations of Bari, Taranto, and Lecce.

Arrival by airplane

The closest airports are Bari and Brindisi, both connected with the most important Italian and foreign cities. From both airports, you should get to Bari train station by shuttle bus service or train, and from there, continue with the Trenitalia to Alberobello.

Arrival by car

The main highways are the A14 Bologna-Taranto and the A16 Napoli-Canosa. You're recommended to exit the motorway in Bari Nord and continue along the SS16 to Monopoli and continue on the SP113 towards Alberobello. Google Maps can help you with the directions.

  • Back to Alberobello

From Ostuni, you can reach Alberobello with buses and trains in Trenitalia, probably with 1 or 2 train changes. On Sundays and public holidays, many train rides are replaced by bus rides.

Arrival by private transfer

If you prefer to travel in total comfort, you can book a private transfer on the days of arrival and departure. For more information, please send an inquiry.

Airport: Bari Karol Wojtyła Airport Airport transfer available: Bari Karol Wojtyła Airport (US$79 per person) Additional charges may apply. You can request this in the next step.
Airport: Brindisi – Salento Airport Airport transfer available: Brindisi – Salento Airport (US$79 per person) Additional charges may apply. You can request this in the next step.

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 15% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid 10 days before arrival.
8 days / 7 nights
from --
Season information
Low Season
  • January 5 - March 26, 2022
  • October 26 - December 16, 2022
Mid Season
  • March 27 - April 7, 2022
  • April 18 - June 24, 2022
  • September 5 - October 25, 2022
High Season
  • April 8 - 17, 2022
  • June 25 - September 4, 2022
  • December 17, 2022 - January 4, 2023
Pricing information
  • Packages with bike hire include road bike rental. You can also rent a trek bike for 80 EUR (pannier and helmet included) or an E-bike for 150 EUR  (pannier and helmet included).
  • Single room is available at an additional 280 EUR (in Low season), 320 EUR (in Mid season), 360 EUR (in High season). There is an additional cost of 90 EUR for solo travelers.

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