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Puglia itinerary suggestions

Albany, New York
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Puglia itinerary suggestions

We are planning a trip to Puglia this July for 23 nights (yes, I know, not the ideal time to go but that's life with a schoolteacher) - plane tickets are already purchased to Bari. We are seasoned Italy/world travelers, but the Puglia itinerary has us a bit perplexed. Geographically, the region is large and diverse and the sites are well spread out. Our typical agenda is to see quite a few cultural/historical sites and museums, have a relaxing beach stay somewhere or two, and enjoy the cuisine and soak in the atmosphere and culture; the less running around the better and with a stay of this duration we would generally only want to move four or five times, using each place as a base from which to branch out either by rail or rental car.

This is proving to be a bit of a challenge in Puglia, as no sight or place necessarily commands one's attention for a long period of time. We will have a rental car. Here's the potential itinerary:

-arrive in Bari, take train to Polignano a Mare, has a nice beach and the town looks really nice, stay for (3) nights for a day trip or two to Bari proper;

-take train from Polignano a Mare to Lecce, stay for (5) nights and pick up rental car upon departure;

-drive to Martina Franca stay for (4) nights to visit sights around the Valle D' Itria , take a day trip to Taranto to see the city and the archeological museum;

-drive to Matera stay for (4) nights, perhaps a day trip to Metapontum;

-drive to the Gargano peninsula stay for (4) nights in either Vieste or Peschici for some beach time, and to explore the immediate area of the forest;

-drive to Trani; we have a particular interest in this area as the wife's family is from Monteleone di Puglia SSE of Foggia on the Campania border; stay for (3) nights before heading to Bari, dumping the car and flying home.

We could substitute time around the Salentine south of Lecce (Otranto, Sta. Maria de Leuca, beach near/south of Gallipoli) for the entire trip to the Gargano which is both isolated and quite a drive. A recommendation for a good beach base in the Salentine would be most welcome.

We'd be interested in your thoughts especially regarding duration in each place, as well as how you might plan it were you to fill 23 nights; are we missing anything inadvertently? Are we remiss in going someplace in particular that you'd recommend? For example, some folks regard the Gargano as essential and others not so much. We've seen a ton of itinerary suggestions for a week or 10 days, but nothing of this length (that I've found). Six places is a lot of moving around in my book, but we're finding it tough to consolidate anything due to the geographic spread of the region.

We look forward to your thoughts. Thanks,

-Richard

Montelparo, Italy
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1. Re: Puglia itinerary suggestions

It looks pretty good and makes sense. May be because its summertime, we would cut one day each in Lecce and Matera because from Martina Franca you shouldn't miss few hours in the ceramic town of Grottaglie; from Polignano an early (10 am guided tour) visit to the Castellana Grotte (caves), and from Trani a short drive to the Frederician castle at Castel del Monte. Gargano is famous for its coastline but also for pilgrimage to Monte Sant'Angelo and San Giovanni Rotondo.

On the way to Monteleone try to squeeze a stop in Sant'Agata di Puglia and take few pictures from the balcony of via xx settembre

Pittsburgh...
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2. Re: Puglia itinerary suggestions

Can't really comment on Puglia as I am no expert. But we are traveling to Puglia in May. It will be our first time to this area, having been to other areas of Italy about a dozen times. We are staying in Peschici for 4 days....if you are looking for something interesting for lodging...check out gli Orti de Malva in Peschici. It is a B&B that is in the old town and hangs on the cliffside. It is also connected to the restaurant di Porta di Bassa (sp?). Included in the price for the B&B was a complimentary dinner for 2 at the restaurant. The Gargano Penninsula looks especially interesting and Peschici looks like the kind of town we would enjoy. From there we are heading to Lecce area..staying at the Hilton Doubletree (on points) in the town of Acaya for 4 nights. It looks like a good base to explore the southern tip of the Salenta region of Puglia. Close to beahces, Lecce, Matera, Alberobello. From there we are heading to Tropea in Calabria to finish our holiday. Not sure I helped much. Good luck making the most of your 23 days.

Here & There
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for Sicily, Taormina
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3. Re: Puglia itinerary suggestions

Your assessment of Puglia is accurate - Geographically, the region is large and diverse and the sites are spread out, and hiring a car is your best option for seeing all that Puglia has to offer.

Matera is lovely, but you wouldn’t require four nights in Matera. Parking can be challenging in Matera and you wouldn’t require a car during your time in Matera, so consider beginning or ending in Matera and then taking the Pugliarbus to or from Bari’s airport.

http://pugliairbus.aeroportidipuglia.it/

In summer, you might also consider less time in Lecce and instead spending a few nights in Otranto or Gallopoli, especially since both are beautiful seaside towns, and the old towns are wonderful.

Ostuni is a wonderful town and the nearby beaches are really lovely, and Alberobello (although) touristy is worth a visit.

Vagabonda

Castellaneta, Italy
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4. Re: Puglia itinerary suggestions

Good idea to visit Metaponto and Matera

When you visit Metaponto I suggest you take a hike also Ginosa Marina is a seaside resort on the border with Basilicata.

It has a beautiful sandy beach is very wide, with the vegetation that frames the entire coast.

There is free beach private beaches.

http://www.marinadiginosa.net/

Edited: 10:45 am, March 12, 2012
Montelparo, Italy
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5. Re: Puglia itinerary suggestions

Hi Richard, i have asked my work collegue from Puglia which is the nicest beach of the region on his opinion and his answer has been:

Torre Mozza, approx. 10 km south-west of Presicce and 9 Km south-south-east of Ugento

taranto
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6. Re: Puglia itinerary suggestions

an particular place for see all the Puglia is GINOSA MARINA (TARANTO) there is the largest send of the Puglia, it is far only 1 our to Gallipoli, only half past our to CASTELDELMONTE (TEMPLARE CURCH) only half our to Matera (unesco place) to metaponto (where is the temple of pitagora) and only ine our to Alberobello (trulli) so you can see all the strategic place of Puglia and you will have a beautiful place for the sea beetween a trip and trip.

Torre San Giovanni...
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7. Re: Puglia itinerary suggestions

Hi Richard,

I write to you from South Salento province of Lecce.

Your program looks almost perfect.

In my area, I would recommend the beautiful beaches of marina di Torre San Giovanni Ugento and Riva di Ugento, here's an example that falls in the regional park of litorale di Ugento:

www.lidopineta.it/Galleria-fotografica.aspx

Then I suggest you both as a city of Otranto visit to the beaches

tripadvisor.it/LocationPhotos-g652004-Otrant…

nearby

www.lacutura.it Botanical Garden

and then of course the coastal Otranto-Santa Maria di Leuca Ciolo locality with a stop and a boat trip to the caves of Leuca.

tripadvisor.it/LocationPhotos-g580229-Santa_…

and then at least the historical centre of one of the micro-countries of Taurisano, Specchia, Felline

tripadvisor.it/…38710512

Gallipoli

tripadvisor.it/LocationPhotos-g616185-w3-Gal…

and to top it off,

our culture of traditional music and dances that during the period of your stay, will enliven evenings throughout the Salento.

www.youtube.com/watch…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=raoKqaUQPF4

Good holiday in Puglia and ... in Salento.

Maria Domenica

Castellaneta, Italy
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8. Re: Puglia itinerary suggestions

You can visit Taranto in the Co-Cathedral, in avenue Magna Grecia designed by architect Gio Ponti :

www.comune.taranto.it/citta/pagina.php?id=169

Or visit the Castello Aragonese, where they organize free tour :

http://www.castelloaragonesetaranto.it/

Albany, New York
3 posts
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9. Re: Puglia itinerary suggestions

Wow - many thanks to everyone who has replied. Your suggestions, links and information will prove extremely useful. It's also nice to know that we were indeed on the right track as far as trying to plan our itinerary.

Any other ideas or suggestions? We would love to hear them. Thanks again!

-Richard

Connecticut
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10. Re: Puglia itinerary suggestions

Hi Richard,

My family and I are planning a 2 week trip to Puglia in September or October this year with a side trip to visit extended family members in Monteleone di Puglia. Can you share with us how your Puglia trip was in July and if you would change any destinations in your plan?

Thank you.

Richard