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Cycling the Heel of Italy - Matera to Lecce

1-800-267-3347

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  • Holiday type
    Self-guided cycling
  • Duration
    11 nights
  • Accommodation
    hotel-to-hotel
    , and
  • Activity level
  • From $2479per person, tour only
  • NEW FOR 2023  
  • Departures
    Saturdays, Mondays and Thursdays from 16 Mar '23 to 24 Oct '23
  • What your holiday price includes
  • 11 nights hotel-to-hotel accommodation in a mix of , and hotels
  • All breakfasts and 2 evening meals
  • Management by your local Headwater-appointed agent
  • GPS route directions and maps
  • Headwater navigation app
  • High quality bikes
  • Luggage transfers between hotels
  • Optional Upgrades
  • Electric bikes available
  • Tandems available
  • Suitable for
  • Solo travellers
  • Couples
  • Excellent choice for
  • Food lovers, wine lovers, art & history, swimming opportunities, vegetarian meals, coastal routes

Italy: Puglia

Cycling the Heel of Italy - Matera to Lecce

  • Matera - UNESCO World Heritage Site; visit the cave houses
  • Alberobello's fairy-tale trulli houses
  • Olive groves, towering limestone cliffs and Roman amphitheatres
  • The white city of Ostuni, the majestic castle of Otranto and Baroque Lecce
  • Based on our popular 7 night, Cycling the Heel of Italy - Alberobello to Lecce

Starting in Matera, the city of 'Sassi' and a UNESCO world heritage site, and through the local canyons, the 'gravine', you will enter Puglia, a unique landscape sandwiched between the Adriatic and Ionian seas. We explore the very best of this captivating region from Murgia to Salento.

Your daily cycle routes allow you to explore a series of architectural and natural wonders, sites of immense historical and cultural interest, and of course, to be tempted by local culinary specialties! Cycle through the Murghe plateau, the Salento plain and along the coast through a landscape of ancient olive groves and vineyards and past traditional masserie, coastal watchtowers and splendid Baroque towns.

This holiday is offered with a choice of mainly 3 Star, or mainly 4 Star accommodation. The 3 Star accommodation is listed on the hotels page. Stays are in the UNESCO listed towns of Matera and Alberobello; Putignano, known for its ancient carnival; white-washed Ostuni; Galipolli, where the historic centre is on an island; Santa Maria de Leuca, where the Ionian and Adriatic seas meet; Otranto, known as the gateway to the Orient and Lecce, known as the 'Florence of the South'. Stay also in Castellaneta and Avetrana where evening meals are included.



We're here to help

If you have any questions about this holiday call our sales team on 1-800-267-3347, use our live webchat or email usa@exodustravels.com

Day-by-day itinerary



We're here to help

If you've any questions about this holiday call our sales team on 1-800-267-3347 , or email usa@exodustravels.com

Day 1: Arrive in Matera

Make your way to Matera, one of the oldest inhabited human settlements in the world.

Day 2: Free day in Matera

Explore the UNESCO-listed Sassi of Matera; a complex of houses built into the natural caves of the Murgia.
Breakfast included

Day 3: Matera to Castellaneta 60km/37.5mi

Your first cycling day takes you through a landscape of wheat fields and wide panoramas. Visit the town of Laterza, famous for its tasty bakery products and majolica pottery. Continue to Castellaneta, a small city perched on the edge of a ravine.
Breakfast and evening meal included

Day 4: Castellaneta to Putignano 55km/34.5mi

Today you will cycle in the Terra delle Gravine Natural Park, amongst deep canyons, carved by rivers over millions of years. Leaving the ravines you will soon discover the iconic Puglia scenery: dry stone walls, old masserie (fortified stansteads) and trulli, rural houses with a conic roof typical to the area, built without any cement or mortar. Reach Putignano, known for its ancient carnival.
Breakfast included

Day 5: Putignano to Alberobello 35km/22mi

Leaving the medieval centre of Putignano, cycle in the lush countryside to reach Castellana Caves. It is the main karst site in the South of Italy and a visit is recommended.After the caves, continue along the rolling lanes of the countryside where olive, almond, apricot and cherry trees grow. Continue to the UNESCO heritage site of Alberobello, the world capital of Trulli.
Breakfast included

Day 6: Alberobello to Ostuni 49km/31mi

Cycle through the lush Valle d'Itria, passing more white-tipped trulli houses on the way. Boasting beautiful coastal views, the route takes you through the famous wine town of Locorotondo, regarded as one of Italy's most stunning villages. After sampling some of the local sparkling white wine, continue to the white city of Ostuni - so called for the dazzling effect of its whitewashed houses.
Breakfast included

Day 7: Ostuni to Avetrana 55km/34.5mi

Cycle through the colourful Salentinian countryside, characterized by olive groves and red soil towards the medieval towns of Oria and Manduria with their authentic historic centres.
Breakfast and evening meal included

Day 8: Avetrana to Gallipoli 60km/37.5mi

Head to Torre Colimena on the Ionian Sea, then follow the coast alongside a series of beaches and the old coastal towers of Salento. Reach Gallipoli, known as the 'Ionian Pearl' with its Old Town situated on a rocky island. Take time to wander the narrow lanes of the historic centre to discover its baroque cathedral, elegant palazzi and enticing restaurants.

Day 9: Gallipoli to Santa Maria di Leuca 50km/31.5mi

Cycle towards the most southerly point of Salento at Santa Maria di Leuca, where the crystal waters of the Ionian and Adriatic Sea meet. This village is home to one of the most important lighthouses in Italy, as well as numerous villas built at the turn of the century.
Breakfast included

Day 10: Santa Maria di Leuca to Otranto 53km/33.5mi

Pedal along the south coast of the Adriatic Sea, stopping off at the famous Grotta Zinzulusa and the thermal baths of Santa Cesarea Terme. Your final destination is Otranto, the most eastern point of Italy with a stunning cathedral and Aragonese castle.
Breakfast included

Day 11: Otranto to Lecce 54km/34mi

Follow the shoreline through olive groves to the Baroque metropolis of Lecce. Known as the 'Florence of the South', Lecce is home to over 30 churches, an amphitheatre and a Roman theatre dating back to Emperor Augustus.
Breakfast included

Day 12: Leave Lecce


Where you stay

During your holiday you stay at the following hotels. If you'd like to extend your time at any of these or, if you'd like to enhance your stay with an upgraded room, just let us know at the time of booking.

To find out more call our sales team on 1-800-267-3347, use our live webchat or email usa@exodustravels.com


Find out more on the hotel website.
Read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Hotel Belvedere, Matera

Hair dryer iconNEARBY:

Located in the Sasso Caveoso, and just a few steps from the Sassi di Matera UNESCO site. Il Belvedere Hotel is a unique location for a perfect view of the Sassi and is close to the typical cave churches, on the main access street to the town. Hotel Il Belvedere is an elegant and typical Hotel in Matera, the rooms are elegant and unique, most of them are built within the cave and each one presents original tufa wall.


Find out more on the hotel website.

Le Grotte di Sileno, Castellaneta

Le Grotte di Sileno is an agriturismo, set on a farm that produces olive oil and wine. The agriturismo has only recently been completed and rooms are spacious.


Read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

B&B Santo Stefano, Putignano

Hair dryer iconNEARBY:

Located in the centre of Putignano, B&B Santo Stefano rooms have a balcony, fan and are decorated with stone vaulted ceilings.


Find out more on the hotel website.
Read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Trullidea, Alberobello

Hair dryer icon

A unique and authentic experience staying in a trulli, a traditional 15th century Apulian stone building with conical roof.

Each trulli house is made up of a double bedroom, small bathroom with shower and living area with sofa and small kitchenette.

The trullis are located in the centre of historic Alberobello, a UNESCO world heritage site, within walking distance of cafes, restaurants and shops.


Find out more on the hotel website.
Read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Relais Sant'Eligio, Ostuni

Hair dryer icon

The origins of Relais Sant'Eligio date back to the first half of 1500 when the Queen Bona Sforza d'Aragona imposed all coastal cities from Naples and Otranto to have a resting station. The Resting Station of Camposada in Ostuni was built along the ancient 'Via del Procaccia', the route running along the ancient walls of the White Town. Between 1630 and 1810, it became the Home of the Zevallos dukes as proved by several decorative friezes and ornaments.

The name 'Sant'Eligio' derives from the patron saint of the farriers working in the stables of 'Camposada' Resting Station. The ancient emblem highlights the evocative written in Latin language: QUISQUIS HUC VENIT HUC REDIET (if you come once, you will necessarily come back again)

The rooms at Hotel Relais Sant'Eligio are elegant and comfortable.


Find out more on the hotel website.

Masseria Strazzati, Avetrana

Masseria Strazzati is an old farm estate and is set within 100 hectares of olive groves. Your evening meal is taken at the Masseria Bosco where the pool can also be used.


Find out more on the hotel website.
Read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Hotel Joly Park, Gallipoli

Swimming Pool IconHair dryer iconNEARBY:

Located in the centre of Gallipoli and only a short walk from Corso Roma, Hotel Joli Park is modern and comfortable.

The rooms are well equipped and contemporary. The hotels offers guests a private shuttle service to take you to and from the private beach “Lido delle Sirene”.


Find out more on the hotel website.
Read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Hotel Terminal, Leuca

Swimming Pool IconHair dryer iconNEARBY:

Hotel Terminal is nestled among the eclectic villas, on the central nineteenth-century seafront dedicated to Cristoforo Colombo, the heart of the town, with a beautiful view on Punta Ristola and Punta Melis.

The hotel has it's own private beach that can be reached by a picturesque underpass. Rooms are comfortable and well equipped.

Extending your stay

If you'd like to extend your trip with extra nights at the start or end, or if you'd like to arrange a stop off point en-route, then we recommend the following hotels.


Find out more on the hotel website.
Read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Hotel Excelsior, Bari

Hair dryer icon

The Hotel Excelsior has large and bright rooms. There is also a bar and restaurant offering Mediterranean dishes.

Travel

Transfers can be arranged at a supplement from Bari Airport at 14:20.

Call now to speak to our specialist team at 1-800-267-3347 or email us at usa@exodustravels.com for enquiries or to book your trip.

Reviews

Here at Headwater we thrive on feedback from our customers. It's the only way we can continue to develop, and where necessary improve, our services and ensure our holidays continue to be the best they can be. However, as this is a relatively new holiday, we don't yet have any customer reviews available.

Dates and prices

You can be confident that our pricing includes all the standard requirements of your holiday and many additional extras. Always ensure that you are comparing like for like when booking your holiday.

This 11 night self-guided cycling holiday includes:

Hotel-to-hotel accommodation in a mix of , and hotels

All breakfasts and 2 evening meals

Management by your local Headwater-appointed agent

GPS route directions and maps

Headwater navigation app

High quality bikes

Luggage transfers between hotels


How to book:

For further details, or to check availability, speak to our sales team on 1-800-267-3347 or click on the 'check availability' links below to complete our holiday enquiry form (we'll contact you at a time that's most convenient for you).

To enquire about this holiday, or for further information, call our sales team on 1-800-267-3347 or click on the 'Check availability' links below to complete our holiday enquiry form.

  • Mar 2023
  • Apr 2023
  • May 2023
  • Jun 2023
  • Jul 2023
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  • Sep 2023
  • Oct 2023
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16th Mar 2023 US$2479 Tour only: US$2479 Check availability
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The prices quoted for each individual departure supercede those published in our current brochures. Air prices are subject to change and we advise early booking to obtain the best prices. Please see our Planning your holiday and What's included in the price? pages for additional information.

Holiday details

Children
This holiday is unsuitable for children.

Holiday type
Self-guided cycling Managed locally by Headwater appointed agent.

Departures
Saturdays, Mondays and Thursdays from 16th Mar 2023 to 24th Oct 2023, for 11 nights. All dates are subject to availability, please contact us to check.

Meals
All breakfasts and 2 evening meals

Electric bikes
It is possible to hire electric bikes for this holiday at a supplement of £364 per person. As these are available on a first come first served basis, we recommend early booking to avoid disappointment.

Tandems
It is possible to hire tandem bikes for this holiday at a supplement of £220 per bike. As these are available on a first come first served basis, we recommend early booking to avoid disappointment.

Other details
This holiday is also available with mainly 4 Star accommodation.

Tailor-made travel

Tour only

Transfers can be arranged at a supplement from Bari Airport at 14:20.

How to book

For further details, or to check availability, speak to our sales team on 1-800-267-3347 or click on the appropriate 'Check availability' button above to complete our holiday enquiry form, we'll contact you at a time that's most convenient for you.

To enquire about this holiday, or for further information, call our sales team on 1-800-267-3347 or click on the 'Check availability' links above to complete our holiday enquiry form.

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