Custom Tours to ItalyOnly £1200

THE RUNAWAY ITALIAN PRESENTS:

A ‘JOURNEY OF THE SENSES’ TOUR IN

UNDISCOVERED PUGLIA, THE HEEL OF ITALY

25th September to 1st October 2017 – £1,200

Small group – max of 8 participants

 

Trani, Puglia

piazza Sant’Oronzo, Lecce, Italy

 

Immerse yourself in nature and restore your energy, vitality and experience some Puglia ‘therapy’ with a Runaway Italian ‘Journey of the senses tour’!

You will benefit from the dedicated attention of an expert and friendly Italian Tour Manager and Guide, who will provide fantastic local knowledge and insider know-how. Nicla Williams aka the Runaway Italian is passionate about bringing you closer to authentic and undiscovered Italy and create memorable travel experiences you will never forget!

PUGLIA

Puglia in the heel of Italy is a seriously underrated region and yet it’s pretty special and worth exploring to enjoy its breathtaking monuments, together with its dazzling coastline and scenery and exuberant party atmosphere!

Did you also know about the remarkable findings of some scientists that reveal that even a short stay of 3 days or more in Puglia has amazing benefits for your physical and mental wellbeing? I can truly say that I have experienced this myself on my last tour there and I’m sure that so will you! These are just some of the highlights of this very special tour:

  • Feast your eyes on fascinating architecture, especially Norman and Baroque, on exceptionally attractive hilltop towns, charming fishing ports and dazzling coastline and beaches
  • Sample the fantastic local cuisine and delight your taste buds on the flavours of Puglia
  • Feel more in tune with nature and revive your wellbeing as well as spark your creativity
  • Take part in unforgettable local experiences that put you in touch with the culture like no other!

What’s included:

  • 6 nights en-suite accommodation in 4* hotels
  • all transfers from and to airport in Italy and all scheduled journeys throughout the stay including transfers by people carrier
  • all breakfasts
  • 2 dinners, on first night and on last
  • a full-time Italian Tour Manager and Guide, Nicla Williams
  • a unique experience learning about the production of local olive oil and oil tasting in one of the most ancient olive mills
  • an unforgettable and lively performance of local musicians

What’s NOT included:

  • any gratuities and extra drinks/refreshments not included in the meals
  • flights – I will be happy to help you with this. You can contact me on: niclawilliams@therunawayitalian.com.

 

I recommend you travel on one of the following flights:

EASYJET: London Gatwick to Bari. Alternatively you can travel by:

EASYJET: Bristol to Rome Fiumicino and then catch the train to Bari.

If travelling from outside the UK or any other airport apart from the ones listed above, please get in touch and I’ll be able to assist you with your travel plans.

 

ITINERARY

DAY 1:

After the transfer by train from Bari Airport (approx. 40 minutes) to our hotel in Trani, you will have a chance to settle in and rest. The welcome evening meal for the group will give us a good opportunity to get to know each other and myself, your Tour Manager and Guide, who will look after you from start to finish!

We will be staying at the 4* Hotel San Paolo Al Convento for 2 nights. Converted from a 15th century convent, it overlooks the charming port and offers magnificent views of Trani.

DAY 2:

In the morning we will learn more about the fascinating history of this charming port and explore Trani and its stunning cathedral and castle. You can instantly feel yourself readjust to the ‘slow living’ that the locals encourage and you could spend hours watching the light wash over the imposing cathedral and play magic tricks with the sea!

Lunch is independent and you can join me at one of the restaurants along the port or grab a picnic and sit at one of  the many picturesque spots in Trani.

In the afternoon we will explore the local gardens from which you can admire a panoramic view of Trani and also visit some beautiful churches.

DAY 3:

After breakfast, we’ll catch the train to Lecce (approx. 2h30minutes), also known as the Florence of the South.

Lecce, capital of Salento, with its baroque extravagance feels more like a living stage set and its spider’s web of streets offers dazzling architectural surprises at every corner! A quintessentially southern Italian town, Lecce, bursting with piazzas and palazzi, is indeed a wonderful setting for the strolling visitor.

We’ll be staying at the 4* Hotel delle Palme for 4 nights right in the centre of Lecce and within walking distance of all major sights.

You can join me for lunch at Caffe’ Alvino, a very special cafe’ which offers a huge selection of snacks, pastries, desserts and gelato! From your seat in the main piazza, you can also admire the remains of a Roman amphiteatre.

Explore some of the beautiful sights and also many artisanal shops, some of them specialising in amazing papier mache’ sculptures, dotted all around the city.

Mouthwatering selection at Caffe’ Alvino, Lecce

DAY 4:

After breakfast we’ll catch the train to Ostuni, also known as ‘La Citta’ Bianca’ or the White City (approx. 45 minutes).

We will wander through Ostuni’s medieval layout and admire its uniformly whitewashed buildings that make it sparkle.

In Ostuni we will have the unique opportunity to visit an ancient olive mill and museum to learn more about the local olive oil production and taste some of their wonderful organic oil.

In the afternoon we’ll catch an ‘aperitivo’ or cocktail at a stunning rooftop bar with a panoramic terrace and view of Ostuni.

Rooftop bar in Ostuni, Puglia

DAY 5:

After breakfast we’ll explore more of Lecce and its wonders.

Free time for an independent lunch and to wander around its many hidden and yet unexplored corners.

After lunch, Gianni from Autoservizi D’Anna will drive us to Gallipoli and along the beautiful Ionian coast.

Gallipoli in the Ionian Sea (meaning beautiful city in Greek) an ancient town of fishermen and sailors was once a fortress against the Turks, a place of oriental charm with its wonderful beaches and the beautiful historical monuments that surround it. It’s indeed a picturesque town surrounded by high walls to protect it against attacks from the sea.

Gallipoli, Puglia

DAY 6:

After breakfast, we’ll leave by people carrier and Gianni will drive us to Otranto, a fortified seaside town in Salento. On the way to Otranto, we’ll be able to admire many beautiful places along the Adriatic coast like San Foca, Torre dell’Orso and laghi Alimini, 2 beautiful lakes north of Otranto.

Otranto, also called ‘Oriental Door’, faces the strait that takes the same name, the Otranto canal. Otranto has a fascinating history, as over the centuries has had to defend itself from attacks by enemies coming from the sea and its medieval towers and castle still stand as proud witnesses of this.

We’ll have lunch in Otranto and then explore more of the stunning coast on the way to the very tip of Puglia, Santa Maria di Leuca.

As we venture to the southern most point of the ‘heel’, Santa Maria di Leuca is a pearl of a coastal town located in the inlet between Punta Ristola and Punta Meliso and rises in a magical position where the Adriatic and the Ionian sea meet. Its several caves are a natural paradise for underwater exploration and in its inland landscape you cannot miss the iconic lighthouse, which is the second most important lighthouse in Italy after Genoa.

During our final dinner in Lecce we will experience an unforgettable performance from local musicians and soak up a bit more of the wonderful local atmosphere.

Otranto, Puglia

DAY 7:

This is our final day together and after breakfast, Gianni will drive us from Lecce back to Bari Airport. If you are not travelling back to the UK with us and have extended your holiday, we will have to say our goodbyes in Bari.

By now, I’m sure that you’ll be so spellbound by everything that Puglia and Salento has to offer that you will not want to leave this slice of paradise and quite certainly you’ll want to join me on another tour to discover all the other gems we couldn’t fit in the first time round!

For any questions about the tour, please contact me on niclawilliams@therunawayitalian.com.

To secure your place on this special tour, click the button below to pay a deposit by PayPal if you wish and also don’t forget to fill in the booking form and read all tour terms & conditions. I really hope to see you there and lead you on the adventure of a lifetime!