Across Puglia

Puglia Italy: (ZZ-BK-GL03)
URL: https://www.hiddentrails.com/tour/outdoor_bike_italy_Cycling_Gargano.aspx

Introduction
Puglia Italy
Discover Southeastern Italy on a self guided cycling tour!

Apulia is a region in south-eastern Italy that includes the heel part of Italy’s boot, suspended between the Ionian and Adriatic Sea. The region is characterized by endless olive groves, long fields of grain and vineyards. You will start cycling in Matera, UNESCO world heritage site with its “sassi”, and arrive in Lecce, also known as “Florence of the South” because of its magnificent baroque architecture. This bike tour will lead you into a region of scenic beauty, which is, by today’s standards, still unspoiled by the unattractive aspects of tourism and still retains testimony of its great and ancient culture.

Accomodation

Accommodation
We choose all the hotels mindful of your comfort as well as the proximity to cycling paths and any relevant local sites.

Hotel categories:
- Mainly 3* hotels (standard)
- Mainly 4* hotels, with some 3* hotels (upgrade)

All rooms have en suite facilities.

In Alberobello accommodation can be in a typical "widespread hotel", the so called "trulli", for both categories. In the trulli accommodation there is no air conditioning, as their thermal isolation is ensured by the construction method of the trullo itself.
 
When you book the tour please specify the type of room requested:
- double room is a room with one double bed
- twin room is a room with two single beds
- triple room is usually a room with one double bed and a single bed or a sofa bed
- a family room could be converted into two double/twin rooms next to each other, according to availability

Local tax
Some cities charge a tourist tax. These taxes are not included in the sale price of
the tour and must be paid directly by you at check-in or check-out at the hotels.
This fee varies depending on the hotel category, on the season and the number
of days of stay. It is usually between 1 and 5 € per person per night.
At the beginning of 2020 the following local taxes (per person per night) were
valid, but during the season some variations may occur:
Matera: 3* hotel 2 €, 4* hotel 4 €;
Alberobello: 3* hotel 0,80 €;
Ostuni: 4* hotel 2 €;
Gallipoli: 3*hotel 1,50 - 4/5* hotel 2 €;
Santa Maria di Leuca: 4* hotel 1/2 €;
Otranto: 3* hotel 1,50/2,50 €, 4* hotel 2/3 €;
Lecce: 3/4* hotel 1/2 €.



Meals
A breakfast buffet is included each day. Hotels usually serve an a continental breakfast with a varied buffet. However, in some 2/3* hotels you may find the typical Italian breakfast, consisting of a hot drink, such as cappuccino or coffee, with fresh pastries, such as cake, croissants or toast and jam.

* Half board can be arranged: 6 dinners (3-course meals), beverages not included and to be paid on the spot. The restaurants are mostly in the city centres and very rarely in the hotels.

Diets and allergies
If you are vegetarian, gluten-intolerant, allergic to some specific ingredients/substances or if you suffer from any other kind of allergies please indicate it at the moment of booking. We will pass the information on to the hotels, but we cannot guarantee that all dietary requests will be met. Sometimes it is difficult to find particular food, for example gluten-free food, so we suggest that you to bring your own snacks just in case.

Riding

Activity level
Easy to Moderate: some days flat, others with some hills. Suitable for everyone with some cycling experience and a few physical condition.
We have carefully chosen our bicycles and accessories in order to be able to satisfy the requests and wishes of our customers. In this page we illustrate some of the available types of bicycles.

Rental bikes
Our City bikes are available in various sizes in unisex/women’s or men’s models. At the moment of booking, you can choose from the following bikes:
- City bike 27-gear Shimano Deore
- Electro-bike

If you want to do the tour with your own bike, before you depart we suggest to check that all parts of the bike are functioning properly. A cycle computer is necessary to follow the road book. We also highly recommend you to bring a repair kit because the emergency number in case of breakdown cannot be used if you are using your own bike. Don’t forget to bring a padlock and always lock your bike.

Features:
- aluminum frame
- mudguard
- rear rack
- comfort gel saddle
- anti-puncture Schwalbe tyres
- ergonomic bicycle grips
- Speed Lifter system (only for City bikes)

Accessories
All rented adult bikes are equipped with:
1 cycle computer
1 Ortlieb one-sided saddlebag
1 front bar bag or 1 map holder
1 water bottle (0.75 l)
1 repair kit per room: 1 spare inner tube, glue, patch, a pump, 2 allen keys and
tyre levers
1 combination bike lock

At the moment of booking you can also rent helmets suitable for head circumferences from 54 to 61. All our helmets have a certification mark according to the DIN EN 1078 (CE) European norm.

Accompanying material
The Information Pack (one per room) includes:
- final hotel list: due to overbooking or organizational needs your hotel list may be changed just before your arrival
- luggage labels to be fixed at each piece of baggage, which has to be carried
- hotel vouchers to be given to the reception of each hotel on your arrival

Green booklets:
1) Travel guide with valuable information about the history, artistic heritage, landscapes and natural treasures of the areas visited on the tour. Plus: local events, some great anecdotes, suggestions on how to make the best of an extended break along the route, and tips on local wining and dining.
2) Detailed Maps of the itinerary: in colour and scaled 1:75.000/50.000, an altitude profile chart and maps of any historic city centres you would visit.
3) Roadbook describing the cycling route, stage by stage. Great on its own or in conjunction with the maps.

Mechanical problems
During the tour, if the bicycles should have any type of technical problem that prevents you from continuing, please contact us at the emergency numbers and try to describe the occurred issue. We’ll try to solve as soon as possible the problem. As you are riding unaccompanied, it is wise to know at least how to repair or change an inner tube before setting off on your bike. We remind you that we offer no assistance in case of flat tire.
In case of mechanical problems please:
1. Call the emergency phone number
2. Communicate your name and which tour you are on
3. Let us know your position (total distance of the stage) based on the description of the roadbook
4. Give us your mobile phone number

In relation to your location and to the damage of the bike we can:
- ask you to wait there in order to provide a change of the bike
- Send you to a mechanical shop nearby. We will estimate the damage with the mechanic. The charge will be refunded only after our authorization and on presentation of the receipt. In case of puncture no intervention or assistance is foreseen. Customers will be given a proper puncture reparation kit, which wil enable them to intervene directly and solve the problem.

Itinerary

 

Sample Itinerary - subject to changes

Total length: 330 km (Possibility to shorten the itinerary by taking the train: day 3)
Total vertical up: 1,540 m
Terrain: 99% tarmac, 1% unpaved

Route mostly in the lowlands, sometimes hilly. Traffic is almost non existent in Apulia except during the high holiday season. The route includes very beautiful stretches on the coast.

Note: 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 rider can decide autonomously how to deal with these stretches.


Day 1: Arrival
Individual arrival. For millennia, inhabitants of this region have carved dwellings directly into ravines and gullies made of tuff (or tufa), a characteristic honey-colored soft stone. These houses are called “Sassi” and are today World Heritage site.
Meals included: none
Overnight in Matera


Day 2:  Matera to Alberobello
You cycle to the famous trulli of Alberobello and Locorotondo. Trulli were generally constructed as dwellings or storehouses. Alberobello is situated upon two hills, once sepa-rated by a riverbed. On the eastern hill is the new town, with modern architectural features. On the western hill, the trulli are lined up in an urban conglomeration, subdivided into two districts: Monti and Aia Piccola, both National Monuments from 1930, and today World Heritage sites. This is the first stage of the tour but it is also the most changeling. The first 35 km do not present particular altitude difference and the route is mainly flat. The last part from Gioia del Colle is lightly more difficult because of some long but not steep climb.
Biking approx. 70 km (elevation gain: 400 m)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Alberobello


Day 3: Alberobello to Ostuni
You cycle through the countryside to Ostuni, which is reputed an architectural jewel, and is commonly referred to as “the White Town” for its white walls and its typically white-painted architecture. You leave Alberobello and the Trulli city crossing the last part of Murge and going through the towns of Martina Franca, Locorotondo and Cisternino before arriving to the white city of Ostuni. The most challenging part is between Locorotondo and Cisternino.
Biking approx. 55 km (elevation gain: 460 m)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Ostuni


Day 4: Lecce to Gallipoli
A train transfer brings you to Lecce. After a few kilometres through this amazing baroque town you go deep into "salentinian countryside", before approaching the Ionian coast and your daily destination, Gallipoli. The route winds through country roads and not binding and unpaved trails, almost completely flat.
Transfer: about 60 minutes by train from Ostuni to Lecce. The train ticket from Ostuni to Lecce is included in the package tour price.
Biking approx. 50 km (elevation gain: 70 m)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Gallipoli


Day 5: Gallipoli to Santa Maria di Leuca
Cycling further along the coast you will reach Santa Maria di Leuca. The name Santa Maria di Leuca was given by the ancient Greek sailors who came from the East. They saw this place lightened by the sun and therefore called it “leukos”, meaning white. Santa Maria di Leuca is a famous seaside resort and a fishing area. It is the easiest stage, all on asphalted road, flat with some short ups and downs in the final part.
Biking approx. 50 km (elevation gain: 50 m)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Santa Maria di Leuca


Day 6: Santa Maria di Leuca to Otranto
Today you will cycle northwards along the Adriatic coast to Otranto, the most eastern point of Italy where you can visit the beautiful Cathedral and the great Aragonese Castle. The most challenging stretches are 1km climb out from S.M. di Leuca and 3km of continuous but regular slope after Santa Cesaria Terme. Today you will cycle along the coast road 358: one of the most scenic roads in the world.
Biking approx. 50 km (elevation gain: 460 m)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Otranto


Day 7: Otranto to Lecce
Riding along the Alimini Lakes and their unique Mediterranean bush you’ll enter into Lecce. Thanks to its Baroque style, it has deserved the nickname of Florence of the South. You’ll come to appreciate the rich sculpted motives done in the 17th-century with the tender stone from Lecce. The old town enclosed by what is left of the ancient walls, bears the impression of that exuberant period. This is an easy stage. We leave the lovely town of Otranto behind us to discover the Alimini Lakes nature reserve, the old hunting ground of the Swabians and the Aragonese.
Biking approx. 55 km (elevation gain: 100 m)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Lecce


Day 8: Departure
Departure after breakfast.
Meals included: Breakfast


Route Map Gargano

How to shorten the stages
In Italy there is a good train service offering bicycle transport. This low-cost option will allow you to reach the next city in case of rain or bad weather, or if you prefer to visit a city at your own pace instead of cycling. Trains with bicycle compartments are usually regional trains and are indicated with a bicycle symbol on the carriage and also on the timetables displayed at the railway station.
The cost of the ticket for a passenger varies according to the distance covered, whereas for the bike it is always 3.50 € (valid for 24 hours on the entire Italian network). Tickets can be bought directly at the railway station. We remind you that in Italy it is compulsory to validate the ticket before getting on the train.

For further information on timetables and prices you can consult
www.trenitalia.com, www.fseonline.it or www.fal-srl.it.

If you want to shorten the itinerary by taking the train, you can do it only on day 3.
You can shorten the stage from Alberobello to Martina Franca or to Locorotondo by taking a local train.


Rates and Dates for Across Puglia

Rates include:

Standard hotel accommodations, All breakfasts, Welcome briefing in English, Luggage transportation, Train transfer from Ostuni to Lecce on Day 4, Route descriptions and maps & Hotline service.

Packages and Options



  • SeasonYearDescriptionEUR ~US$
    A
    20208 days (High)€740$840
    • Upgrade to 4* hotels (mostly)€80$90
      Single supplement€180$205
      Single supplement in 4* hotels€230$260
      Discount for 3rd person staying in room, pp(€100)($105)
      Discount for 3rd person staying in room, pp ( in 4* hotels)(€130)($140)
  • B
    20208 days (Mid)€690$780
    • Upgrade to 4* hotels (mostly)€80$90
      Single supplement€180$205
      Single supplement in 4* hotels€230$260
      Discount for 3rd person staying in room, pp(€100)($105)
      Discount for 3rd person staying in room, pp ( in 4* hotels)(€130)($140)
  • C
    20208 days (Low)€590$670
    • Upgrade to 4* hotels (mostly)€80$90
      Single supplement€180$205
      Single supplement in 4* hotels€230$260
      Discount for 3rd person staying in room, pp(€100)($105)
      Discount for 3rd person staying in room, pp ( in 4* hotels)(€130)($140)
The US Dollar Rate is Based on Exchange Rate of 1.13

* prices are per person based on double/twin occupancy

Transfer and Other Charges:



 DescriptionEUR~US$
2020 Bike rental 85 $100
2020 Electro bike rental 195 $220
2020 Helmet 15 $20
2020 Extra nights, please inquire 0 $0

Season Tour Dates  Min / MaxReserve
A 2020 08/21 - 08/28 8d / 7n 8 days (High) 2 /15 Expired
A 2020 08/22 - 08/29 8d / 7n 8 days (High) 2 /15 Expired
A 2020 08/28 - 09/04 8d / 7n 8 days (High) 2 /15 Expired
A 2020 08/29 - 09/05 8d / 7n 8 days (High) 2 /15 Expired
A 2020 09/04 - 09/11 8d / 7n 8 days (High) 2 /15 Expired
A 2020 09/05 - 09/12 8d / 7n 8 days (High) 2 /15 Expired
A 2020 09/11 - 09/18 8d / 7n 8 days (High) 2 /15 Expired
A 2020 09/12 - 09/19 8d / 7n 8 days (High) 2 /15 Expired
A 2020 09/18 - 09/25 8d / 7n 8 days (High) 2 /15 Expired
A 2020 09/19 - 09/26 8d / 7n 8 days (High) 2 /15 Expired
B 2020 09/25 - 10/02 8d / 7n 8 days (Mid) 2 /15 Expired
B 2020 09/26 - 10/03 8d / 7n 8 days (Mid) 2 /15 Expired
B 2020 10/02 - 10/09 8d / 7n 8 days (Mid) 2 /15 Reserve
B 2020 10/03 - 10/10 8d / 7n 8 days (Mid) 2 /15 Reserve
B 2020 10/10 - 10/17 8d / 7n 8 days (Mid) 2 /15 Reserve
C 2020 10/17 - 10/24 8d / 7n 8 days (Low) 2 /15 Reserve
C 2020 10/24 - 10/31 8d / 7n 8 days (Low) 2 /15 Reserve
C 2020 10/31 - 11/07 8d / 7n 8 days (Low) 2 /15 Reserve

Dates Note:

Rates do not include:

Local taxes (approx. 10-15 €), Lunches and dinners, Drinks, Bike/Helmet rental & Transfers from/to Matera and Lecce

Other Info
Meeting: Matera
Airport: Bari
Transfer: from Bari by train (not included)

Climate:
                                                Matera area
 

Month

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Average High Temperature (°F)

49

50

55

61

71

80

85

85

76

67

57

50

Average Low Temperature (°F)

35

36

39

43

50

58

63

63

57

51

44

38

Average High Temperature (°C)

9

10

13

16

21

26

30

29

25

19

14

10

Average Low Temperature (°C)

2

2

4

6

10

14

17

17

14

10

6

3

Average Precipitation (days of rain)

4

4

3

3

3

1

0

1

2

4

4

3

Source: NOAA


Seasons
Weather conditions are changeable, especially at the start and end of the season (March to October).

With an average 300 days of sunshine per year, Puglia truly has a wonderful climate for outdoor adventure enthusiasts and lover's of the coast. Often there is always a pleasant breeze, even in the hottest months of the year and the humidity is normally quite minimal as you will find it is a dry heat. Rainfall is scarce and mostly found during the winter months. Since there are no real mountains in Puglia, the temperature is fairly constant from the coast to inland.

Apulia has a typically Mediterranean climate with hot, dry summers and mild winters. Rainfall is rare and scarce, except for showers in winter.
For more information on the weather, you can consult the following site: www.ilmeteo.it

What To Bring:
We advise you to wear comfortable shoes and various layers of practical clothing to be prepared for sudden changes of climate and temperature; don’t forget a K-Way or a poncho, both indispensable in the event of rain, besides a light jacket for cold days and evenings.
Sunglasses, a light-coloured hat, protective suntan cream and insect repellent sprays are important, especially in summer.
During the tour you will have the chance to visit various religious institutions, such as churches and convents, where you must be appropriately dressed (covered shoulders, shoes or sandals, etc...).

Helmet: Italian law does not require cyclists to wear a helmet, but we consider it important to wear one for safer traveling. 

Equipment and clothing
The following personal equipment is recommended:
- basic first aid kit which includes sticky bandages, gauze and low grade disinfectant
- sun glasses for eye protection
- protective sun lotion
- insect repellent

The following recommended clothes are advisable:
- padded cycling shorts
- comfortable shoes with stiff soles
- light weight waterproof/windproof tops
- leggings and long sleeved tops for cooler mornings or evenings
- small close-fitting rucksack to carry small items during the day while cycling
- swimsuit
During the tour you will have the chance to visit various religious institutions, such as churches and convents, where you must be appropriately dressed (covered shoulders, shoes or sandals, etc...).

We recommend that you always keep with you (and don't forget in the transported luggage):
- passport/identity card
- hotel vouchers
- any medicines you could need during the day
- personal belongings (for example car keys).

Luggage Transportation
Your luggage will be transported from hotel to hotel every day starting from the first day of the standard tour until the last day of the tour.
We remind you that luggage transportation is never included in case of extra nights before or after the standard tour.

LUGGAGE ALLOWANCE
For the luggage transportation we accept only 2 pieces of luggage per person: a suitcase and a hand luggage. The max. weight of the suitcase is 20 kg, while the weight of the hand luggage can be of max. 10 kg.
At the first hotel you will receive 2 labels per person which have to be attached to each piece of luggage. You should put 1 label on each piece of luggage. If you have only 1 piece of luggage, write 1 on the label; if you have 2 pieces of luggage, write 2 on both labels.
You cannot change the number of pieces of luggage during the tour.

LACK OF TRANSPORT
We do not guarantee luggage transportation if:
- Labels are not attached to the bags (see above)
- luggage is deposited late at reception (dropped off after 9:00 a.m.)
- luggage exceeds the weight allowance.
In the above mentioned cases a special transportation service can be organized which will have to be paid in cash by you on the spot.

LUGGAGE DELIVERY TIMETABLE
- 9:00 a.m.: you have to deliver your luggage to the hotel reception every morning by 9:00.am., grouped according to the receptionist’s instructions
- 5:30 p.m.: we deliver your luggage to the next hotel by 5:30 pm.
If you think you will arrive early at the hotel because the stage is rather short or you prefer to cycle in the morning and visit the city in the afternoon, please bring a change of clothes with you.

FORBIDDEN GOODS
It is strictly forbidden to put the following items inside the luggage to be transported:
- medicines and lifesaver devices
- glass bottles and liquids in general
- fragile objects
We will not be held responsible for damages caused by non-compliance with these rules.