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Ride Info

Ride Overview

Puglia (Italy), Land Of History, Scenery, Beaches

  • Arrival
  • 10/2/2020
  • Departure
  • 10/16/2020
  • Ride Coordinator
  • Alma Worthington
  • Tour Company
  • Hike & Bike Italy
  • Starting Location
  • Matera
  • Finishing Location
  • Lecce
  • Estimated Cost †
  • $3400
  • Deposit
  • $1500
  • Number of Riders
  • 25 (min. 26 /max. 26)
  • Space Available
  • 1
  • No. of Pending Riders
  • 0

Ride Rating

1B  Warning - Read the Description Carefully

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† Explanation of BAC Ride Fee – This fee is not included in the Estimated Cost and is non-refundable once submitted. The Ride Fee for US and Canada is $50 and $100 for all other countries, both are per participant.

and you can request to participate in this ride.

Ride Coordinator Comments

Looking for a male participant willing to share a room

Ride Description

This is a repeat of the successful 2016 and 2019 rides   This 14 night tour begins in Matera on October 2, 2020 and ends after breakfast on October 16, 2020 in Lecce.   Both cities are served by trains from and to Bari.   The tour is supported by Circle Degli Exploratory - Hike and Bike Italy.  Bicycle rentals will be available.  Arrangements for bicycle rentals are to be made directly with Hike and Bike Italy (details available upon request to the ride leader).   A few ebikes will be available for rent.   A total of 2 tandems can be accommodated - contact leader.

OVERVIEW:   Puglia, the heel of the Boot has some of the most classic and quintessential aspects of Italy and Mediterranean Culture.   We will start from Matera, a timeless town with dwellings carved in rock, very often used as a set for Hollywood movies.   We will explore the town on foot accompanied by a local guide who will tell us about its history.   Then we will cycle to the Valle d’Atria, a UNESCO HERITAGE site famous for the Trulli, small stone dwellings with conical roofs, traveling through olive and almond groves.   We will then reach the picturesque town of Polignano a Mare, an ancient Greek town perched on cliffs overlooking the Adriatic sea.   Once there we will follow the coast along minor roads among century old olive grove forests.   From Ostuni, “the white city” we will continue south to the plains of the famous wines of Puglia entering the territory of the Salento (the southern part of this region) whose capital is Lecce, one of the most beautiful towns of Southern Italy with its imposing Baroque style Palazzi and churches.   Our adventure will then continue to Otranto, Gate of the Orient and to Gallipoli (Kales Polis - The Beautiful city) on the Ionian Sea and we will end in Lecce.

RIDE RATING:  The itinerary is rated 1B. The ride from Matera to Locorotondo is 2C but van shuttle support will be provided in case of need. On some of the core routes we will be cycling occasionally on gravel roads for short times but that should not be a problem on road bikes with slightly wider tires (700x25-28) recommended. Hybrid and touring bikes are perfect for this tour.

Optional longer rides will be available on some days for those who wish longer rides.

ACCOMMODATION:  Matera (2), Locorotondo (2), Polignano  Mare (2), Torre de Diamante, Tenuta Moreno, Lecce, Otranto (2), Gallipoli (2), Lecce.  Hotels are 3 and 4 star.  

Day 1 - arrival in Matera - an extra night in Matera has been planned to allow for jet lag and to allow participants to enjoy this fascinating city.

Day 2 - bike rentals will be handed out early afternoon followed by a brief meeting and a guided visit of the town followed by dinner at a local restaurant including music featuring local musicians with ancient instruments

Day 3 - Matera to Locorotondo   82.5 km/51 miles - 630 m/2060 ft

Easy-moderate, flat and gently rolling.   From Matera’s rocky area you descend to a mostly agriculture land.   After 40 km slightly more hilly,  small farms, characteristic limestone walls and the “trulli”, typical conic roofed buildings that dot the land.

Day 4 - Locorotondo to Locorotondo   34.2 km/22 miles - 392m/ 1300 ft

Two rides planned - this one takes you to Martina Franca, the largest town in the area with its beautiful historic center, baroque palazzi and churches of Spanish influence, and also Cisternino, a whitewashed town.  The other option is across the famous Valle d'Itria and takes you to the town of Alberobello, Unesco heritage, a famous settlement of buildings with conical shaped roofs, and back to Locorotondo through minor roads.

Day 5- Locorontondo to Polignano   58.1/36 miles - 265 m/870 ft

Gently rolling.   Minor roads to the Castellana caves, major attraction and to Conversano with a very nice historic center.   Then descend towards the sea town of Polignano a Mare on the cliffs facing the Adriatic sea.   Another option is a more direct and slightly shorter route without visiting Conversano.

Day 6 - Polignano to Polignano   78.1 km/46miles - 286 m/940 ft

One option is on a bike path, then roads parallel to the coast to reach Bari.   Nice views of the coast, fishing villages of San Vito and Mola.   Visit the old city center of Bari, recently renovated and restored as the main attraction of the area.   Another option is an inland ride to Conversano for those who did not see it the day before.

Day 7- Polignano to Torre del Diamante   35.7 km/22 miles - 189 m/590 ft

Easy, flat.  Ride to Monopoli with its old harbor and beautiful old town, the archeological site of Egnatia and its museum and finally the area of Pezze di Greco where our country hotel is located.   A relaxing day but with some extra riding available for those who wish.

Day 8 - Torre del Diamante to Tenuta Moreno   67km/42 miles - 412 m/1352 ft

Gently rolling.   From coastal plains with olive groves we cycle to the “White City” of Ostuni, where it is worth spending some time visiting the old town.   Then south to the Salient land, the land of the Sea, the Sun and the Wind as we descend to a much wider flatland with lots of olive groves.   Our hotel is a very charming country estate in the vicinity of Mesagne

Day 9- Tenuta Moreno to Lecce   57.4 km/36 miles - 230m/760 ft

Easy, flat.   We will visit Mesagne and visit the most famous winery in Puglia - Mr. Falvpo’s Tenuta Li Veli.   Then on to Lecce through olive groves and vineyards to explore on foot the most fascinating and elegant town of the Mediterranean.

Day 10- Lecce to Otranto   57.4 km/36 miles - 197m/650 ft 

Ride towards the small village of Acaja,then closer to the sea in the Natural Reserver WWF Cesine.   We will pass small fishing villages until we reach the Alimony lakes and finally the beautiful Gate of the East, Otranto, with its incredible historic center and cathedral.

Day 11 - Otranto to Santa Maria di Leuca (one way)   50.8km/32 miles - 632m/2075 ft. - optional ride

Gently rolling to rolling.   This is a classic ride to the tip of Italy with great views of cliffs.   Along the route we will pass through a spa area (Santa Cesarea Terme) and a popular cliff diving site (Castro).   This is a hard day, so go as far as you wish and turn back or take a rest day.

Day 12 - Otranto to Gallipoli   54km/32 miles - 301m/1015 ft

We cross the peninsula through many small villages, olive groves, tomato fields, almond trees and vineyards

Day 13 - Gallipoli to Santa Maria di Leuca (one way)   52km/33 miles -  305m/1000 ft - 

Optional ride - go as far as you wish or all the way passing fisherman villages and very appealing sandy and rocky shores - bring a swim suit with you!

Day 14 - Gallipoli to Lecce   53.9k/34 miles - 329/1080 ft

Easy ride initially following the coast passing through the reserve of Porto Selvaggio, then passing the town of Cupertino and its extensive agriculture land.  We arrive at our final destination, Lecce.

Day 15- Leave after breakfast

Note that days 4, 6, 11 and 13 we spend two nights in same hotel so if participants do not wish to cycle it can be a rest day.

OTHER INFORMATION:  A bike box transfer will take place on the afternoon of day 2 to transfer to a storage facility.   Bike boxes will be returned in Lecce and further transportation is the individual's responsibility.

COSTS:  The cost of the tour is based on an exchange rate of $1.25 to the euro.   The price is subject to change based on the exchange rate and will be reviewed in April 2020.   Depending on currency exchange rates, there may be an adjustment in the amount of the final payment.  The initial deposit of $1500 plus the $100 BAC tour fee is due immediately.  The final payment  is due on May 15, 2020.  

Included are 14 hotel nights in 3-4 star hotels, all breakfasts, 6 dinners, the luggage van, maps, GPS tracks, and sightseeing information.  In addition, GPS units will be provided at no extra cost to any participant who does not have a GPS of their own. Cue sheets will not be provided.  A guide who is a native Italian, yet also speaks excellent English will accompany us.

We will have a get together every evening.   Because of hotel restrictions all Happy Hour/map meetings will  be cash bar and with limited snacks.   Our gourmet dinners will be plentiful.   Also included are guided walks of Matera and Lecce with professional guides.   In Matera we will have dinner with traditional folk music.

SINGLES & SOLOS POLICY:  Singles are welcome and encouraged to find compatible roommates and/or riding partners. The Ride Directors will introduce and assist singles to find roommates, but singles must make their own rooming decision.  

The solo supplement is $700 and is limited to two spots. Solo supplement payments need to be sent to the BAC office by May 15, 2020.   Checks to be made out to "BAC" with a notation of the tour name included on the check. These are to be mailed to:  Bicycle Adventure Club, PO Box 23998, San Diego, CA 92193.

CANCELLATION POLICY:  The BAC ride registration and payment processing fees are not refundable unless the entire tour is cancelled.  Refunds of tour payments will depend upon whether a replacement rider signs up, and on costs that can be recouped.  The amount refunded will be based on the principle that the tour’s remaining participants will not incur any additional cost as a result of cancellations.  If the cancelling participant is replaced, a refund will be made at that time.  If the cancelling participant can't be replaced, any refund will be determined after the ride and final expense report are completed.  If a single participant cancels and another roommate cannot be found, in addition to other costs that cannot be recouped the cancelling roommate may also be liable for the single supplement fee of the roommate remaining on the tour.  BAC encourages members to purchase trip cancellation insurance.     

For cancellations for which a replacement is not found, the Hike and Bike Italy cancellation fee policy is as follows:

90+ days - 10%

30-90 days - 25% 

0-30 days  - 100%

RIDE PARTICIPANT RESPONSIBILITY:  Please remember that BAC Ride Leaders are volunteers, and that successful tours depend on participants providing much of their own support. Participants are expected to come to the ride well trained, in good health and ready to accomplish the required daily riding using well-maintained bicycles.    All participants should accept responsibility for a safe and enjoyable tour. We encourage you to read the ride description carefully and respond to requests from Ride Leader. While on the ride, support your Ride Leader.   Please keep the Ride Leader informed of any special request you may have and respect the Ride Leader’s decisions.

SIGN-UP:  To submit a request to join this ride use the "links" displayed above this Ride Description. When you are accepted, the Ride Leader will move you from the Waitlist to the Pending List. At this time you will receive an email notification to login to the BAC website to sign the release of liability form, and pay the non-refundable BAC ride registration of $100 plus the tour deposit of $1,500 by credit card. As soon as your deposit has been processed, your name(s) will be added to the Participant List.

To contact the Ride Leader, "click" the name at the top of this Ride Description.


Bicycle Adventure Club
PO BOX 23998 San Diego, CA 92193
Telephone (858) 715-9510 office@bicycleadventureclub.org

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