Italy : Puglia

Journey through Puglia to Matera

Trip code: T07PG 4.7 (6 reviews)

Self-guided cultural tour

7 nights,
hotel-to-hotel

13.0Kg CO2e

SUMMARY

  • Explore the famous Trulli house of Alberobello, UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Enjoy a wine tasting in Locorotondo and a guided tour of the unforgettable city of Matera
  • Swim in the clear waters of Monopoli & Polignano a Mare, stunning Puglian beaches
  • Sip chilled white wine in the sunshine, discovering grand baroque architecture and small, local boutiques

WHAT'S INCLUDED?

  • 7 nights accommodation
  • All breakfasts
  • Luggage transfers between hotels
  • Private car transfers between hotels
  • Wine tasting in Locorotondo
  • Guided group tour of Matera
  • Il Forno di Gennaro - Traditional bread making workshop in Matera

TRIP DESCRIPTION

As one of our Independent Tours, Journey through Puglia to Matera combines the highlights of Puglia with the magical city of stone, Matera - not to be missed when exploring Southern Italy. The charm of Puglia invites you in with sweet aromas of olive groves and carefully crafted vineyards. From extravagant churches and ancient towns with narrow, winding streets, to seas of olives and simple fishing harbours, this beautiful region has much to offer.

There's no better place to begin your Puglian adventure than the quintessential town of Monopoli. Resting on the shimmering coastline, take a moment to immerse yourself in the local culture as you wander the old streets, discovering the beauty of baroque architecture around every corner. From here, you can visit one of Puglia's most famous beaches; perched on a cliff above the crystal-clear Adriatic, Polignano a Mare is a true spectacle and well worth visiting.

From the coast, travel inland to the hilltop town of Locorotondo, truly deserving of its accolade of 'Borghi piu belli d'Italia' (one of the most beautiful villages in Italy). Here, we've arranged a wine tasting for you to sample the famous white wine, Bianco Locorotondo DOC. Next, you explore the famous Trulli houses of Alberobello, their white-washed conical roofs now recognised as icons of Puglia.

Whilst not within Puglia itself, no visit to Southern Italy would be complete without witnessing the spectacle that is Matera. As the European Capital of Culture in 2019 and the set of James Bond's No Time To Die in 2020, there is much to discover. We've arranged a guided tour of the renowned rock churches and caves cut into this ancient city; it truly is fascinating and incredibly beautiful, particularly within the glow of sunset. So, help yourself to a glass of chilled wine and a plate of the local pasta to end your Southern Italian tour on a high note.

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DAY-BY-DAY ITINERARY

 

Day 1: Arrive in Monopoli

Arrive at your first hotel in Monopoli, located on the waterfront next to the 16th century fortress, Castello di Carlo V.

You stay at Albergo Diffuso.

hotel details

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Albergo Diffuso 4*, Monopoli

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Visa
Hairdryer
WiFi
TV
Minibar
Aircon
Safe
Tea/coffee


With various houses scattered around central reception and the communal breakfast room (all within 200m), this elegant Albergo sits right on the port of Monopoli just a short walk from the beach. Created to offer visitors the authentic way of life, door to door with locals, historic homes were recovered and finely renovated, maintaining the exposed Tuff-stone walls and adding quality furniture to provide a home away from home.

Should this accommodation not be available, an alternative of the same standard will be used.

Room upgrades and extra nights: Contact us for details.

Day 2: Explore old town Monopoli

A quintessential southern Italian town, Monopoli entices you in with glimpses into everyday life whilst still being a popular tourist destination. From the photogenic harbour, see local fishermen return their catch with nonnas on the balconies behind, watching the world go by.

Follow your nose through the old towns narrow winding streets, past small boutiques and tempting eateries. The Basilica of the Madonna della Madia is a beautiful baroque style cathedral, well worth a visit, as is Palmeiri Palace, an 18th century Baroque Palace highlighting Lecce-inspired architecture. Enjoy a glass of chilled white wine on the Piazza Giuseppe Garibaldi; the perfect way to end your day.

Day 3: Wine tasting in Locorotondo

Expand your exploration of Monopoli to the coastline and along the lungomare - the paved promenade that skirts the old town along the coast. There are plenty of beaches within walking distance from where you can enjoy your morning. One of Puglia's most famous beaches - Cala Porto - in Polignano a Mare, is just a 15min drive (or 5mins on the train) should you want to tick this one off the list too.

Later in the day, you will be transferred to Locorotondo (approx. 30mins) where we have arranged a wine tasting for you; Bianco Locorotondo DOC is a famous white wine in Italy. You will stay in Locorotondo for the next two nights, plenty of time to see why it deserves its accolade of 'Borghi piu belli d'Italia' (one of the most beautiful villages in Italy).

You stay at Sotto le Cummerse.

hotel details

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Sotto le Cummerse 4*, Locorotondo

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Visa
WiFi
TV
Minibar
Aircon
Tea/coffee


As another 'Albergo Diffuso' (multi-unit hotel), houses are scattered throughout the historic centre of Locorotondo. Breakfast is taken at La Salottina where fresh pastries are baked daily using organic, local produce. In the evenings, this becomes a communal place to relax and enjoy the ambiance of this beautiful hilltop town.

Should this accommodation not be available, an alternative of the same standard will be used.

Room upgrades and extra nights: Contact us for details.

Day 4: Trulli Houses of Alberobello

Perched atop a hill, Locorotondo is a fantastic viewpoint to see the surrounding countryside bursting with olive groves and vineyards. Spend the morning wandering the maze of whitewashed lanes, grand baroque archways, and sipping an aperol spritz in the sun.

In the afternoon, we recommend taking the train to Alberobello (10 - 15mins). This small town is an incredibly picturesque destination which has become a must see for many travellers in Puglia. Made a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its unusual districts of trulli, these white-washed conical roofed houses have become icons of the town. Wandering the trulli district is fascinating, there are also a handful of small museums and shops nearby that you can visit before taking the train back to Locorotondo.

Day 5: Guided tour of Matera

This morning, you will be transferred to your third and final overnight destination of Matera (approx. 1hr 30mins). Technically not in Puglia, but in the neighbouring region of Basilicata, Matera cannot be missed when visiting Southern Italy. One of the oldest cities in the world, Matera is rich in nature, history, and culture; it's unlike anywhere else.

Today we have arranged a guided group tour of this fascinating city, giving you the opportunity to learn from the locals as you explore the unique cave settlements and historic rock churches. As the European Capital of Culture in 2019 and the set of James Bond's No Time To Die in 2020, there is much to discover in this magical city of stone.

You stay at Hotel Belvedere.

hotel details

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Hotel Belvedere 3*, Matera

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Visa
Hairdryer
WiFi
TV
Minibar
Aircon
Safe


Carefully conserved from ancient homes in the Sassi, this elegant hotel stands out amongst the old caves in the historic centre of Matera. The panoramic terraces give you an excellent view over the Sassi of Matera, the hotel is also conveniently located close to the renowned rock churches, cave houses, and museums. The cave rooms are incredibly unique, built into the old rock, all with their own unique character. There are also classic rooms available that aren't built into the rock.

Should this accommodation not be available, an alternative of the same standard will be used.

Room upgrades and extra nights: Contact us for details.

Day 6: Traditional bread making workshop & more Matera

In the morning, we have arranged a bread making workshop for you. Matera bread is a delicacy of the region, it has a unique taste produced only with re-milled durum wheat semolina from the Lucanian area and is an ancient and honoured tradition. During the workshop, you will discover this ancient art within one of the city's historic bakeries, making your very own loaf of Matera bread. End with a tasting/aperitif of the handmade products and Lucanian wine.

Take your time exploring more of Matera. Simply wandering the streets fully immerses you into the character of the ancient city with its churches cut into the rock of hillsides and ravines. Some of the best viewpoints of the city are from Belvedere di Piazza Giovanni Pascoli overlooking the rock church, ravine and Duomo's bell tower - perfect for a photo opportunity. You may also like to visit MUSMA, an extraordinary art museum with modern sculptures scattered in a 17th century cave palace.

Day 7: Gravina walk (7km)

Take the train to Gravina (approx. 1hr), birthplace of Pope Benedict XIII, with its historic palaces and dramatic canyon. From the town's iconic 17th century aqueduct bridge, head uphill to the Botrugno Hill for sweeping views of this picturesque town, before returning to its atmospheric centro storico. Return to Matera by train (approx. 1hr).

End your day with a traditional Italian meal at one of the many great restaurants in Matera. Typical dishes are orecchiette pasta, senise peppers, and Aglianico wine - one of the local red wines. We recommend choosing a restaurant with a view; sunset over the city is one of the most magical times to see Matera, glowing in the golden hour.

Day 8: Depart Matera

Add extra nights in Matera to explore more of this incomparable city before departing for home.

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These tour only prices are based on two people sharing. Single supplement from £516.

These flight inclusive prices are based on two people sharing. Single supplement from £516.

OPTIONAL UPGRADES
  • Flights from London Gatwick to Bari with British Airways
  • Other flights, including regional departures
  • Alternative flights, including regional departures
  • Extra legroom seats available
TRAVEL DETAILS

Our aim is to provide holidays that are unbeatable for choice and flexibility. We've listed our most popular travel options below, however you aren't limited to these - we can tailor-make virtually any holiday to suit.

Air prices include our standard flights
Out: British Airways London Gatwick to Bari, then private car transfer to first hotel in Monopoli (approx. 50 minutes).

Return: Private car transfer from last hotel in Matera to Bari airport (approx. 55 minutes), then British Airways Bari to London Gatwick.

Extra legroom seats are available on request.

Alternative Air Travel
Alternative flights, onward rail to your holiday area, and connecting private transfers can be arranged from most UK airports. If you would like to use one of the many 'low cost' airlines, we can book these on your behalf. We can also book UK shuttles to connect with your onward flight, please call for details and prices.

Alternative transfers
If you require alternative transfers (because you will be arriving at a different time to our standard flights), then we can usually arrange these for you (there may be an additional charge).

To find out more about the travel options available call our sales team on 01606 720199, use our live webchat (we open again 9am Monday) or email sales@headwater.com

Should you require overnight airport accommodation, airport parking or even a uniformed chauffeur to take your car from your departure terminal and park it for you, we can arrange this for you through Holiday Extras. You can book airport parking, airport hotels and executive lounges through their website or contact us for further details. Early booking is recommended to obtain the best availability and prices.

REVIEWS

An amazing time exploring beautiful Puglia. Accommodation excellent, Agents Marco and Claudia friendly and knowledgeable. Would highly recommend this holiday to anyone who wants to enjoy the walks, scenery and history of this beautiful destination.

Paula Farmer, 2 Jun 2024

 

The experience was great. The places we visited were varied and extremely interesting. The organised events such as the Bread making, Wine tasting and guided tour of Matera were really excellent and not to be missed.. The Trulli Houses of Alberobello were well worth vsiting as they are so unique. However it was busy when we were there but not uncomfortably so, but I would think at it its busiest it could become extremely crowded.

David Harding, 1 Jun 2024

 

Relaxing and interesting holiday enhanced by good organisation, well chosen hotels and activities

Vivien Prendiville, 15 May 2024

 

The holiday itinerary was well planned and the booked activities such as wine tasting, bread making and the guided tours were excellent. The app was really useful for getting around and my clients had an enjoyable holiday. The only thing they missed was somewhere outside to sit and relax at the hotels. As a result they felt they had to keep busy all day so didn't come back feeling relaxed but they had a good time.

Caroline Kohn, 7 May 2024

 

Our experience was very positive. We absolutely loved the bread making and the tour of Matera. Both guides on these tours were exceptional.

John Jones, 21 Apr 2024

 

Thank you for a very enjoyable holiday overall.

Christa Laird, 16 Apr 2024

 


Self-guided cultural tour

7 nights,
hotel-to-hotel

13.0Kg CO2e

7 nights from £1329

CHOOSE A DEPARTURE

Call: 01606 720199

 

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