Experience Puglia
Cultural Tours • Sightseeing Tours • Private Tours • Food Tours • Day Trips
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Personally guided tours through Puglia showcasing unique itineraries that will transport you through this charming corner of Southern Italy. Our tours are customized to enable travelers to enjoy and appreciate the historical context of the towns, their traditions, local crafts, food and wine.We realize that travelers yearn for a deeper experience when visiting Italy. Therefore, our ultimate goal is to provide more than a “coach” experience –more than just an overview of art, history and architecture. We will arrange private tours for individuals, couples or small groups.
Gioia del Colle, Puglia, Italy

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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.

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Culture682471
3 contributions
Jun 2019
Traveling with Angelo is like traveling with family. You never feel like a tourist. Additionally, he takes you to the best restaurants and wonderful tours. You can see that he is happy when his guests are enjoying themselves. It is not just a business for Angelo. He CARES!.
Written February 11, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

WoolyDog
Washington DC, DC56 contributions
Jul 2022 • Solo
You could not find a better guide than Angelo. I could not recommend him more highly!
He made the entire experience so enjoyable but I learned so much at the same time.
For a region like Puglia going with a private tour is really the best option, the best way to find special places a normal tourist would miss.
Written July 10, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

ozitravlr
Brigadoon, Australia220 contributions
Oct 2018 • Couples
We recently returned home after enjoying Angelo's wonderful tour "Experience Puglia". I rarely get around to writing Trip Advisor reviews these days but felt I should add our five star rating to all the others. This wasn't our first trip to Italy, however somehow Puglia eluded us, apart from driving through there some thirty-eight years ago. Back then we wanted to see some of the uniquely shaped trulli houses, and we did….but that was all. Had we known how much more there is to see we would have returned sooner.

My husband doesn't mind driving in Italy but it has become more demanding, with parking restrictions and ZTL zones, so Angelo's tour seemed just the thing for us and we travelled well in his comfortable vehicle. Angelo has put together an excellent itinerary which allows you to experience the sights and tastes of Puglia and learn the rich history and culture of the area, which he is passionate about. All the restaurants he chose for the 'long lunches' were excellent, and all different. The accompanying wines are selected with care; we enjoyed trying wines we cannot find in Australia. Angelo provides interesting historical background to what you are seeing. We came home vowing to learn more about Emperor Frederick II, the medieval monarch whose stamp is all over Puglia. There is walking involved on this tour, but Angelo paces it well to your level of fitness.
So much to see in Puglia, which has some beautiful places to visit, and is less crowded than many other places in Italy. We could not pick a favourite sight; each town had something noteworthy to see. Maybe beautiful baroque Martina Franca which had the added bonus of a Picasso exhibition in its Palazzo Ducale? Maybe the somewhat mysterious Castel del Monte, a UNESCO heritage-listed site? Maybe watching the women who sit all day in the streets of old Bari fashioning the ear-shaped pasta (orecchiette), or the fishermen at the Bari port pounding their catch of octopuses on rocks to tenderize them? Or the beautiful seaside town of Trani with its spectacular Duomo, situated right on the sea? The list goes on…and that is before adding the quirky trulli buildings into the mix...And then there is Matera - which is in fact across the border in Basilicata and is an amazing sight. Angelo's tour also includes a daytime visit to Matera. I would also recommend staying there overnight as we did when our tour with Angelo was over. (We arranged this independently.)
The accommodation during the tour was chosen by Angelo and was comfortable, clean and managed by pleasant people. We spent six nights in a boutique hotel in Gioia del Colle and one in a villa in the country where we also had an amusing cooking lesson, and then ate the results. We liked Gioia del Colle; it seems the sort of town you would not mind living in. Our touring days were very busy and we returned to Gioia late afternoon. However after a rest we enjoyed walking around in the evenings as the residents were doing (the passeggiata) and sometimes had a light meal at one of the casual local restaurants. (Angelo gave us a very useful map indicating some recommended places in relation to our hotel, with opening times and specialties.) Gioia also has a noteworthy small castle (Frederick II again) with an archaeological museum containing treasures from nearby excavations dating back to ancient Greek times.
We are experienced travellers, but it would have been hard to put together something by ourselves that was as well-crafted and all-round satisfying as Angelo's tour.
Written December 4, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

terrylynn128
Richmond, VA2 contributions
Oct 2017 • Friends
Our trip to Puglia in October was spectacular owing in large part to Angelo, the owner of Experience Puglia. I took this trip with a friend and Angelo told us he wanted us to experience the tour as if we were with a friend and that was exactly how we felt. Puglia is a beautiful region with many towns to explore. Angelo’s itinerary was perfect. Each morning, he showed up at the lovely B&B he arranged and ushered us into his car and we didn’t have to think about a thing. It was wonderful each day to be taken to the perfect places in the perfect towns. No time wasted with tour books and anxiety over parking zones.

The towns were simply lovely. We stayed in Gioia dell Colle, and each day we visited two or three (maybe one for just a restaurant) towns. Matera and the “cave houses”, Polignano a Mare and it’s spectacular seaside location, the beautiful Locorotondo and Ostuni, and Alberobello (and the trulli!) - just to name a few.

One incredible and pleasant surprise for me personally was the spectacular food and wine experience. I certainly expected good food and wine. It’s Italy! I was happy to see “long lunches” on the itinerary. My favorite thing to do in Italy is just sit and enjoy the food, atmosphere and wine. However, I was unprepared for the level of excellence of every meal and every glass of wine. We had Angelo pick his favorites for us (we were totally giving Angelo every decision) and I still sit around and dream about that food and wine! Each restaurant was different and had a different at ambience and size. The level of personal attention at these restaurants, the incredible food and wine, and Angelo’s relationship with the chefs and owners worked together to give us a most wonderful experience.

This was the first guided tour I’ve taken, and after being the tour operator for my family, I’m thoroughly spoiled. Unfortunately, I doubt that I will find an “Angelo” experience again. He keeps his groups small and the experience is truly personalized. Angelo’s easy, graceful personality, his love and knowledge of Puglia, and his friendship with the people who own and work in the wonderful restaurants, winery and olive oil producers all combined to give us that authentic Italian experience we sought. It was very sad to leave Angelo as we came to think of him as a friend.

I strongly and heartily recommend Experience Puglia. I can’t wait to go back to Puglia and Angelo and all that good food and beautiful towns!

Written November 5, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

knit27
Wayne, PA79 contributions
Sep 2018 • Couples
We travelled as a group of 4 on our adventure with Angelo,the owner, driver/guide through the wonderful towns of Puglia.It was amazing and better than ever imagined! By end of week we felt like we were traveling with a good friend who sensed our needs and allowed us to see things new and interesting to us.The hotel Cavour we are based out of during our stay surpassed our expectations and was a great base for exploring. Angelo was always on time and prepared for our daily travels. We saw such a wide range of towns from Unesco sites to seaside to medieval to cultural and enjoyed everyone. We rarely felt like tourist just like friends traveling together.
The midday meals were beyond belief and included multiple courses with wine and delectable treats. Rarely did you need to have an evening meal but in Gioia you could venture out at night into this safe friendly town for drinks,pizza or a lovely sit down meal under the stars with candlelight.
The people of Puglia are proud of their towns and culture and you are always greeted in a welcome way.
This trip is a MUST and I hope we can revisit. We have made friends with Angelo and his family and hope to stay in touch always.
Written September 14, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

DrBart1954
Edenton, North Carolina, United States1 contribution
Oct 2013 • Friends
My wife and two great friends and I recently traveled to Italy. We planned to see the usual sites, but I also wanted to visit Gioia del Colle, the little town in Apulia (Italian: Puglia) where my father’s father and his parents were born. We visited Gioia after touring Rome, Florence, and Venice. We only stayed two days in Gioia; I wish we could have stayed more. In Gioia we saw a beautiful part of Italy, and one that is not focused on tourism. With Angelo as our friend and guide, we felt not like tourists, but like family. The accommodations at the Cavour were excellent. Angelo arranged for our meals at restaurants run by and for the local population, and there we experienced some of the best dining of our entire stay in Italy. The wines there were definitely the best. We enjoyed the tour of the castle of Frederick II, over 750 years old and perfectly preserved , but we especially loved the Monday morning we visited the little shop where we watched the mozzarella being prepared, the Fatalone winery, and the tour of the Mancino olive oil press.

Throughout our wonderful stay, Angelo Coluccia was the best guide one could imagine. He is reliable, friendly, out-going, knowledgeable, and he loves the heritage of his city, region, and country. It is his joy to share that love with his guests.

We waited too long to see Italy. I don’t know when we will make it back, but if we do, I want to spend a lot more than two days in Gioia del Colle and Puglia. I am happy that my great-grandparents left Italy and brought my grandfather to the United States—if they hadn’t, I would’t be here to write this review). But they must have missed their homeland terribly. If you are dreaming about visiting Italy, make your dreams real! Do it! You won't regret the decision. And while you are in Italy, spend a few days, or better, a week with Angelo: Experience Puglia!
Written November 23, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Caiaai
Oslo, Norway1 contribution
Jun 2011 • Friends
We talked about it a lot when we came back to the holiday house and the overall verdict among us (5 Norwegians, 1 Englishman) was:
- One of the best planned and executed daytrips we've had.
- Angelo is one of the best guides we've had .
This is a group who have travelled together 10 years.

Angelo picked us up early in the morning at our holiday house and from there the day just escalated, ever so gently, to perfect.

With careful and considerate driving he transported us from one tasting highlight to another. The day went at a relaxed pace, with Angelo as a an equally relaxed and highly knowledgeable guide, and yet we covered wine, olive oil and flocal food tastings, all original and all places we would never, ever, have found ourselves (this in addition to Angelo telling us about Puglia history, btw). Best part of it, all were quality choices. Resampled the olive oil today, and actually - turns out it's not just holiday-buy - it tastes lovely after the fact . So I have no qualms standing by this review. : )
(FYI the first winetasting we had on the daytrip was one of the most charming ever! )
Written June 24, 2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

451Kate
London, UK23 contributions
Nov 2018
We had a wonderful 3 day tour of Puglia with Angelo which was tailor made to include not just the "usual " sights but also that little bit more. Yes we went to visit Trulli but before we went to the main tourist street and souvenir shops Angelo took us to a quiet street a little further out where the Trulli were actually being used as homes. I echo all the other comments here. We were so well looked after by Angelo; he arranged everything and was welcomed by the bakeries and restaurants we visited. Lunch was a highlight on each day. No menu just a discussion between the chef and Angelo about what was fresh and good that day. Superb. I wish there was an Angelo in every destination!
Written November 22, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Maria A
Redlands, California, United States66 contributions
Oct 2018 • Couples
My husband and I were one of 2 couples on this week long tour that was like no other we had ever taken. Angelo, our guide , was very knowledgeable about Puglia and all the places we visited were a delight not only for the sights we saw but also for the fabulous food and wine we had daily! We started out usually by 8:30 am from our primary location in Gioia and would return by 5 -5:30 pm. We did a lot of walking so comfortable shoes are a must. I would have like a little more time in Lecce to do some shopping but on the whole this was a truly wonderful tour. Not only did Angelo know his history, he was also a foodie!! A fantastic combination! I would recommend this tour with Angelo to anyone interested in Italy , it’s sights and foods! We also had a cooking lesson that was great fun.
Written October 13, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Salsad8
Leland, NC44 contributions
Oct 2017 • Friends
My friend and I recently had a 4 day tour with Angelo. I had been conversing with Angelo for a couple of years after seeing his excellent ratings on TripAdvisor and it wasn’t until this year that I could make a long-awaited trip work out. I had never used a tour guide before, on previous trips to Italy, but decided to choose Angelo because I really didn’t know anything about the area. Choosing Angelo was absolutely the best decision I could have made.

We saw an amazing number of sites and experienced so much in our 4 day tour. His tour was so efficiently planned. Not one minute was wasted. If we had decided to plan this trip ourselves there is no way we could have done as much.

Angelo knew exactly how much time to devote to each activity so that we got the full flavor and yet when it came to the times when we needed to savor the moment and enjoy the dolce vita, for instance at lunch, he allowed plenty of time. All the lunchtime meals were amazing, in beautiful, unique restaurants. We truly got a taste of several different typical Puglian meals. Angelo also happens to have an extensive knowledge of wine and it was fun to hear him negotiating with the restaurant staff to obtain the best match for our meals.

The tour was so varied, every day was different, every experience unique. Other pluses, Angelo was always punctual. We could always count on him arriving a few minutes before the designated time. He was thoughtful, attentive to changing needs, and very safety conscious, especially when navigating any number of changing terrains, steps, and streets. He was especially patient of our picture taking. His knowledge of the history of Puglia area and its prominent historical figures was endless. You can tell that he has studied all aspects of this region and that he has a real love for Puglia.

We liked the free evenings because we could explore the quaint, ancient town of Gioia del Colle, the location of the charming B and B where we stayed. Angelo was able to recommend some restaurants to try in this town, although we were usually so full from lunch, dinners could be light appetizers or some local pasta. Gioia is an easy town to navigate and stroll through to soak up the local color.

Puglia is such an interesting, beautiful, and undiscovered area. I cannot say enough about Angelo and his tour. We hated to leave him but had the opportunity to spend a couple of nights in Alberobello in a trullo at the end of our time with him. Even then, he gave us some recommendations for restaurants there. I wish if time had allowed, we could have done the full tour with Angelo but that will have to be another trip and I can’t wait!
Written October 24, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Experience Puglia (Gioia del Colle) - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go