Day 1: Bari – Polignano a Mare
Arrival to Bari airport and private transfer to your hotel. Check-in and at leisure.
Overnight: Polignano a Mare
Day 2: Polignano a Mare
Guided tour of two remarkable places Alberobello & Matera:
1. Unesco World Heritage site since 1996, Alberobello is world famous for the characteristic cone shaped buildings known as trulli. These incredible structures are built out of chiancole, flat stones in local calcareous rock, plentiful in the area.
2. Matera is one of the most interesting, unusual and memorable tourist destinations in Italy. In the remote southern region of Basilicata (also called Lucania), still little-visited by foreign travelers, it is a town famous for its extensive cave-dwelling districts, the sassi. Curious visitors can stay in caves, wander the lanes alongside the picturesque cave-filled cliffs, and learn the history of this fascinating place.
Return to hotel and at leisure.
Overnight: Polignano a Mare
Tip of the day
– GROTTE DI CASTELLANA GUIDED TOUR FROM BARI: Castellana is the city which hosts one of the fabulous subterranean karst complex, where you can admire unique landscapes and natural corridors along huge caves where stalactites and stalagmites make spectacular forms. The “white cave” is the most beautiful of all and completes the entire path Karst.
– VISIT OF THE POLIGNANO A MARE CAVES BY BOAT – Boat ride – skipper hire: During the excursion there is a time for swimming in one of the most beautiful places on the Polignano coast. With the Cliff Tour you can enjoy a tasty aperitif with fresh drinks and prosecco offered by the crew. We will show you the hidden gems of the beautiful Polignano a mare. Duration: up to 2 hrs.
Day 3: Polignano a Mare – Puglia
Private transfer to Lecce. Check-in hotel and at leisure.
Tip of the day:
SALENTO IN ONE DAY FROM LECCE: This tour will give you the opportunity to visit the four most significant towns in Salento: Galatina, Otranto, Santa Maria di Leuca and Gallipoli.
Day 4: Puglia
This day enjoy in private cooking class in Lecce. We’ll start with an introduction to the culture, history and viticulture of Southern Puglia, followed by a walking tour to a local fish market, where you’ll learn about Mediterranean fish. We’ll head back to the Lecce school to make fresh pasta from scratch and continue with fish preparation. You’ll learn to taste critically, to distinguish three different rosati and this will segue into lunch, of an antipasto, primo, secondo, contorno and dolce, all produced by your own hands. Everything will be accompanied by good Italian local wine.
Tip of the day:
– CASTLES OF PUGLIA DAY TRIP (cca.6 hrs from Bari): From the UNESCO-listed Castel del Monte to a number of medieval–era fortresses, Puglia offers an array of destination-worthy castles: Visit the distinctive Castel del Monte before continuing up the coast to Bitonto, Bisceglie, Trani, and Barletta.
– CULTURAL HALF-DAY TRIP TO PADRE PIO: San Giovanni Rotondo is famous for his work in the city of St. Pius (known as Padre Pio) of Pietrelcina, and the city where the venerated monk worked his miracles. Pio was beatified in 2002. In the Capuchin Monastery Padre Pio received the stigmata in 1918, and where all those supernatural events led to his sainthood and canonization took place as well. Visiting this monastery and visiting the chambers where St. Pius conducted his life means jumping into a context of spirituality and mysticism. Next to the Monastery rises the Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie. This profound mixture of historic, religious and architectonic elements represent interest for all visitors – religious or non-religious.
– JEWISH TOUR OF LECCE: The tour begins with the visit of the area around the Basilica di Santa Croce, which stands on what was originally the Jewish neighboorhood. During the tour, your guide will tell you about the Jewish community here, and why the Jews were forced to leave Lecce in 1541, during the reign of Charles V. The tour continues with the visit of the underground museum “Palazzo Taurino: Medieval Jewish Lecce”, situated on the remains of the Synagogue, with its mezuzah and mikveh.
– E-BIKE TOUR ON THE PUGLIESE AQUEDUCT CYCLE ROUTE WITH WINE TASTING: Excursion for couples and families and groups of friends who want to spend a unique experience together on top of the GIANT bikes, which make this ride pleasant and unforgettable on the Apulian aqueduct cycle route and the countryside of Locorotondo, Cisternino, Ostuni and Ceglie Messapica. The final wine tasting in the historic center of Locorotondo rounds off an unforgettable day.
Day 5: Puglia
The discovery of Lecce starts from the beginning pre-Roman and Roman, to the great period of the Baroque, a walk to the historic center that will take you to discover the wonders of Lecce, one of the most beautiful cities of southern Italy. The route starts from Porta Napoli to Piazza Duomo (Cathedral, Bell Tower, Bishop’s Seminar), the baroque heart of Lecce. Continue walking to the Church of St. Irene, Sant’Oronzo square, where you can see the ruins of the Roman amphitheater, the church of San Marco and the Sedile.
Walking through the streets of the old town, we will visit the Church of Santa Chiara and Roman Theatre, other important particulars of the story of Lecce.
Day 6: Bari, Sicily
Private transfer to Bari Airport. Direct flight to Sicily to Catania. Private transfer to Taormina Hotel, check-in and at leisure.
Day 7: Sicily
Catania Walking Tour: Among art and flavors: Catania is located on the east coast of Sicily, at the foot of the Mount Etna. It is the second largest city in Sicily and the tenth in Italy. It has had a long and eventful history, having been founded in the 8th century BC by the ancient Greeks.
You will visit the Baroque city center of Catania (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), famous for the Roman amphitheatre, the historical churches, the Ursino Castle and the Piazza Duomo with the famous elephant (symbol of the city).
Tip of the day:
– THE LAND OF THE CYCLOPS AND ACITREZZA: Follow the legendary Odysseus’s Route during the navigation by private boat along the Cyclops Coast and Acitrezza nature reserve. Spend some time for swimming and snorkeling during the navigation in the coastline. Reach Acitrezza, a pittoresque fishermen town and enjoy a lunch at typical Sicilian seafood restaurant with a stunning Ionian sea view (lunch not included). After lunch visit Acireale a nice town rich in important baroque churches and historical building.
– GODFATHER LOCATIONS TOUR: Discover The Godfather filming locations: visit “The Castle of Slaves” in Fiumefreddo, a baroque building from the 18th century (many scenes of The Godfather trilogy by Francis Ford Coppola were shot there). Enjoy the panoramic road to Forza d’Agro. In this small town you will enjoy a stunning view of the East coast of Sicily. Take a picture at the church of San Nicolò, where The Godfather’s wedding takes place. Duration: approx. 7 hours
Day 8: Sicily
Discover the wonders of Etna, the highest active volcano in Europe. Experience the unique landscapes of the volcano on a nature trek that’s a perfect balance of adventure and learning. Take in views of the Valle del Bove and explore a lava cave.
Day 9: Sicily
Day at leisure.
Optionally: day trip to Palermo or half or full day wine tour.
Day 10: Sicily
Visit Siracusa, a wonderful ancient city that belongs to the Unesco heritage. Stroll through the streets of Ortygia Island and visit on your own the Archaeological Park. Enjoy also the visit of the older Noto town which its church were declared Unesco heritage as well as trough the Valley of the Baroque.
Day 11: Sicily
Boat tour along the coastline of Taormina: Enjoy a great private boat tour and discover the treasures of one of the most stunning coastlines of Sicily.
Private transfer from your hotel to the port of Giardini Naxos.
Experience the navigation (2 hours) by private boat (captain and English speaking hostess included) along the coastline of Taormina.
You would see some nature beauties such as the famous Isola Bella (“the beautiful island” in front of Taormina), the Cave of the Sirens, “the rock of the prickly peers”, the bay of Mazzarò, the bay of St. Nicholas, Cape Taormina, the coral cave, the Sirens bay and the Blue Cave.
Day 12: Sicily
Private transfer from hotel to the airport and flight back home.