Gourmet Experience discovering Salento by Bike
- 9 dyas / 8 nights s
A Cycling tour is thought to discover not only the places and people of Salento but also its culinary tradition.
It is a tradition based on the Mediterranean diet with its land’s products (olive oil, flour, legumes), seafood, and cheese. Almost every day, during the tour, we plan for you to stop directly at the producers to learn their stories and taste their products: cheese, wine, olive oil, bread, and vegetables pickled in oil.
Riding between 40 and 60 km a day, among villages and hidden beaches, you burn all the accumulated calories and in the evening you can go – guilt-free – to dinner in the best restaurants in the region, which are included in the tour. Overnight stays in villas, farmhouses, historical palaces, and charmed hotels.
9 dyas / 8 nights s
- Bike rental (trekking bike 21 gears) with panniers, lock, helmet, tools kit and handle pouch;
- 8 overnights stays in villas, resorts, farmhouse or B&B;
- 8 breakfast;
- 5 dinners, drinks included;
- 5 tastings with wine, cheese and local products;
- Baggage transportation;
- Tracks of the routes, access to navigation app, phone holder;
- Road book with cultural information and tips about the route;
- Welcome briefing and bike fitting;
- Assistance h24 based on local company with english speaker.
day 1 - PROLOGUE
Meeting in Lecce with our staff, bicycle delivery, GPS device, and briefing about the route, while tasting some local wine.
Dinner is reserved in a restaurant in the historical center, where typical dishes of the Apulian tradition await you
day 2 - FROM LECCE TO OTRANTO (58 KM)
Totally flat route, with many interesting cultural and naturalistic sights.
First, you visit Acaya – a fortified city with a huge castle - and then you plunge down to “Le Cesine” – a WWF-protected area, a crossing point for many species of migratory birds.
From there, you head to the coast, along the ruins of Roca Vecchia – an ancient Bronze age village – and then ‘Alimini’ Lakes, home to many different animal species. Some more kilometers and you are in Otranto, where narrow streets reveal wonders at every corner: The San Peter church and its Byzantine frescoes, a walk along the ramparts overlooking the sea, and finally the cathedral with its paved mosaic – one of the biggest in Europe! a sort of figurative Middle Age encyclopedia.
The day will end with a fine dinner reserved in one of the best restaurants in town.
day 3 - OTRANTO’S SURROUNDINGS (29KM)
A day dedicated to exploring Otranto's surroundings.
Riding along the little river Idro (“water” in Latin), which gives the city its name, you visit a byzantine crypt from the XIII century and then you arrive in Casamassela, where ancient looms are still being used nowadays at “Le Costantine” foundation.
You, then, move towards Giurdignano, crossing a Bronze age megalithic area, observing closely the so-called “dolmen” and “menhir”, which are prehistorical monuments. For lunch, visit and a tasting in one of the most characteristic bakeries in the region, where a farming family has decided to transform ancient grains into baked goods with an ancient flavor.
Way back to Otranto and you are free to enjoy the afternoon visiting the town, swimming in a little beach close to the town, or making a horse ride along the cliffs at sunset (suitable also for beginners).
day 4 - THE “PARK ROAD”: FROM OTRANTO TO SANTA MARIA DI LEUCA (54KM)
Today, you cycle along the wildest coastal stretch of Salento: the lighthouse of Punta Palascìa, in the extreme east of Italy, and a unique lake emerged in a disused bauxite quarry are among the greatest beauties you see just outside the city.
Nestled among the cliffs above the sea, this road is a huge balcony that looks onto Otranto Strait and with a little bit of luck you will be able to see the mountains of Albania and Greece.
You could visit ‘Zinzulusa’ cave, going down nearly 200 feet into the earth's bowels. On the way to Leuca, you can admire some terraces and dry walls, the ingenious devices of peasants to get arable land in barren and impervious areas.
Leaving the gracious harbor of Tricase, in Marina Serra, there will be our friends from Celacanto waiting for you - they prepare a tasting based on local products, produced by farmers of the Otranto – Leuca reserve.
After crossing the bridge over the “Ciolo”, a small canyon carved by the waters and rich in rare flora, you reach Santa Maria di Leuca where we visit the sanctuary, following the ancient pilgrims’ footsteps.
We take care of the dinner this evening too, Federico will be happy to host you in his restaurant.
day 5 - FROM SANTA MARIA DI LEUCA TO UGENTO (47 KM)
Today, you discover the area known as “Capo di Leuca”, the southern part of Apulia, one of the fewer know areas, but the most suggestive of Italy.
Within a few kilometers you pass by small hamlets, each one with its little treasure: in Salignano, an astonishing defense tower situated in the center of a small village, in Castrignano you visit an ancient olive oil mill, drugged into the rock, and then an enigmatic funerary monument made by big stones, in Patú, (its name “Centopietre”, means “a hundred stones”), with byzantine frescos inside; then, you cross Giuliano with its ruined castle and finally, you visit Barbarano - or Leuca Piccola - ('little Leuca'), an important pilgrimage station which still maintains a vast underground area. You keep cycling through olive groves and dry stone walls, crossing the countryside area named “Li Fani”, you reach the seaside known as “Salento’s Maldives”- and you can imagine why! In the afternoon, you dive again into the countryside for a tasting of sun-dried tomatoes, artichokes, and more specialties made by one of the best producers in the area, ”i Contadini”.
Overnight in Ugento, where you can visit an archeological museum, or in a resort nearby the seaside.
The day finishes with a dinner of local dishes.
day 6 - GALLIPOLI AND IONIC COAST (45 KM)
In the morning, you head towards the coast for a dip in the sea of “Saint Andrew’s island and Punta Pizzo Coast Natural reserve”.
Then, you move on to Gallipoli: located on an island, this small fishermen’s village is striking by its light, its alleys, and its fish market.
In the afternoon, Cantina Coppola, one of the ancient vineyards of the area, will host you for a wine tasting. Enjoying the sunset, you cycle towards Santa Caterina, a quiet village on the borders of “Porto Selvaggio Natural Reserve”.
Dinner is based on excellent fish in the nearby village of Santa Maria al Bagno or in one Tenuta in the countryside.
day 7 - GALLIPOLI’S SURROUNDINGS/ OPTION COOKING CLASS (45 KM/ 30 KM)
Today, it is possible to book a cooking class in a farmhouse – Tenuta Donn’Anna (Galatone) – where one of our colleague’s mum will wait for you to cook together some traditional dishes: you get there by bike, you might be accompanied by one of the team. Alternatively, you can do a longer tour – skipping the cooking class – and go to Galatina, where you can admire the church of Santa Caterina, totally painted with frescoes in Giotto's style, and then visit the beautiful historical center of the town and have a tasting of local product in a Bottega, where the owner - Salvatore - will be happy to host you and let you taste the best products of the area.
day 8 - WAY BACK TO LECCE (42 KM)
Last day of your trip.
On your way to Lecce, you pass by many 19th-century fortified farmhouses and villas that characterized this part of the territory, until you get to Nardó to visit its remarkable baroque-style historical center.
The next stop is in Copertino to discover its impressive Norman castle and listen to stories about Saint Joseph of Copertino, 'the Saint of the holy of flights'. Late afternoon arrival in Lecce and bikes drop off.
Final dinner in one of the best restaurants in the town, we greet you with a culinary journey that will leave you speechless.
day 9 - ONWARD TRAVEL
DEPOSIT DUE NOW: 25%
OUTSTANDING BALANCE: 75%
- CANCELLATION POLICY
25% (for cancellations before 90 days), 50% (for cancellations before 30 days), and 75% (for cancellations before 2 days).
In case of COVID reasons (canceled flights, health issues, closing borders) we will reimburse 100% of what you paid or we will emit a voucher valid for 24 months after the tour starting date (you will decide which option you want to take)
No Review Available