“You may have the universe if I may have Italy.”
Italy is largely surrounded by sea and is home to some of the loveliest small beaches and coastline as a consequence. The Pugliese people are thought by many to be the nicest people in Italy and it is here that we begin our story, learning how to cook like a local, drink like a local and go at the pace of a local: slowly. Whilst the Italians may speak at a rate of knots, for everything else, particularly eating, they like to take their time. After our sojourn in Puglia, we leave for Campania, a region known by the Romans as ‘Felix Campania’, or ‘Happy Campania’, because it was where they came to holiday. Nowadays most famous for its Amalfi coast and limoncello, it remains the place that everyone comes to holiday and equally, remains happy, no doubt helped in no small measure (pun intended), by the flowing limoncello. Buone vacanze!
Day 1 Puglia Seaside
Today you will be whisked away to your hotel where there is time to check in, relax, perhaps enjoy some time by the pool before we head out to dine on some of the foods for which Puglia is well-known. (D)
Day 2 Lecce & Pugliese Cookery Class
Today we head off to visit the Florence of the South: Lecce. Here we will have a guided visit including tastings of the typical Pugliese snacks as we walk around the city. Lunch and the early afternoon are free, and then we return to our hotel for some relaxation before heading out for a Pugliese cookery class. (B, D)
Day 3 Caves,Trulli Houses & Olive Oil Tasting
The Grotte de Castellane are a geographical wonder and we head here this morning, ready to be impressed by the huge stalagmites and stalactites. We then head over to the Alberobello to see the Trulli houses, possibly Puglia’s most famous site. Lunch includes an olive oil tasting (Puglia produces over 40% of Italy’s olive oil production) and then the afternoon is at your leisure. This evening we head off to sample local Pugliese wines, with some local cuisine to help soak up the effects. (B, L, D)
Day 4 Beaches & ‘La Città Bianca’
Today we are off to visit some of the loveliest beaches and small towns around Otranto, then return via Ostuni where we will stop for a wander and to enjoy some aperitivi. Dinner this evening is in a nearby town. (B, D)
“Travelling – it leaves you speechless and then turns you into a storyteller.”
Day 5 Matera to Sorrento
This morning we visit Matera to see, among other things, the Sassi (cave like dwellings) for which it is so well known. We will have a guided tour, stopping for the typical Italian breakfast of cappuccino and cornetto, and then will finish with our final Pugliese lunch before continuing on our way to Sorrento. Dinner is at one of the many great fish restaurants in this area. (B, L)
Day 6 Private Sail to Capri & a Pizza-Making Lesson
Today we head out on private boats, complete with alcohol and picnic, to enjoy the island of Capri and the green/blue waters for which she is so well known. Having spent the day at sea, we then make our way to an agriturismo where we shall learn about mozzarella making, for which this area is famous, and where we won’t sing for our supper, but we will make our own pizzas. The pizza Margherita was named after Queen Margherita in honour of her visit to Naples in 1889. (B, D)
Day 7 Naples & Herculaneum
“Vedi Napoli e poi muori.” or “See Naples and Die.” (Goethe)
It was thought that you could see the city of Naples and then die happy that you had seen the most beautiful place in the world. This morning’s visit to the great city includes a stop at one of her most famous cafes where we will sample some of her sweet treats, along with the ubiquitous cappuccino. We then will enjoy lunch with a view, before heading over to Herculaneum to visit the ancient site. This evening you are at your leisure. (B, L)
Day 8 Sorrento, Amalfi & Positano
This morning and for lunch you have free time in Sorrento. Enjoy shopping in her little streets, perhaps get some sandals made or enjoy a gelatofrom the famous Primavera gelateria. We then head out to visit the lovely towns of Amalfi and Positano, where we will also enjoy an aperitivo or two with a view. Dinner will be out in Positano. (B, D)
Day 9 Departure
Time to say ‘Ciao ciao’ Italia, or ‘Arrivederci’, until we write our next travel story together. (B)
Included in this trip:
Accommodation & Services:
- 4 nights in Monopoli or Polignano al Mare, and 4 nights in Sorrento.
- Centrally located, upmarket hotel.
- The services of an extremely highly qualified and experienced Tour Manager who will accompany you throughout your trip (dependent upon group size; please contact us for more information).
- Transfers to and from the airport.
- Private transport, unless otherwise stated.
- All tips. For instance, tips to tour managers, local guides, restaurants and porterage (where available) are all included in the total price; one less thing to think about.
- We will be visiting: Monopoli, Ostuni, Polignano al Mare, Otranto, Lecce, Matera, Sorrento, Naples, Amalfi, Positano and Capri.
Food & Beverages:
- Breakfast and either lunch or dinner (unless otherwise stated).
- When lunch and/or dinner are included, alcohol in the form of wine and/or beer is provided, unless otherwise stated.
- Aperitivi, coffee and snacks where stated.
Entrances & Tickets:
- Grotte Castellane
Guided Tours with a difference:
- trip by private boat including alcohol
- pizza lesson with visit to agriturismo
- cookery lesson
- aperitivi tasting
- a surprise (we are children at heart, after all)
NOT INCLUDED IN THIS TRIP:
- Flights not included. I would suggest flying into Bari or Brindisi and out of Naples.
- Travel insurance.
- Visas, where applicable (Please note: US and Canadian nationals do not require Visas when travelling to Europe).
There are no ‘optionals’ for sale. Everything you have in the itinerary is included in the total cost.
Please note that in booking a trip with me, you are also contributing to charities which support young people in education. The charity I currently give to is the Malala Fund: www.malala.org , whose mission it is to help the 130 million girls worldwide, who are currently unable to access education.
Customised itinerary designed by Lucy Loves Travel Ltd.
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