- Puglia, the heel of Italy, a perfect place for relaxed walking & ancient culture
- The fairytale trulli houses of Alberobello, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
- Enjoy the view from the terrace of Locorotondo, a Salento wine in hand
- Ostuni, the “white city” rising dramatically from the Valle d’Itria plateau
- Follow the trail through the historic cobbled streets of Otranto’s old town
Walk in Puglia, the heel of Italy’s boot bordered by the Adriatic and Ionian seas. Discover landscapes of olive groves, stone walls and ancient towns bursting with architectural gems.
The Valle d’Itria is famous for its distinctive “trulli” houses, and in the town of Alberobello you‘ll even get the opportunity to stay in one!
Walk through classic and tranquil Puglian countryside, staying in remarkable towns, such as Ostuni, known as the “white city”. Moreover experience the Salento region and elegant Lecce, the “Florence of the South” and Otranto on the coast where, from your walk, you can see Algeria and the Greek Island of Corfu.
The quality of Puglian wine and cuisine is second to none and evenings may be spent dining al fresco in a town piazza.
Day 1: Arrive in Alberobello and overnight
Your tour begins in Alberobello, a UNESCO World Heritage Site with 1500 traditional beehive-shaped trulli houses from the 14th century.
Alberobello is easily accessible Bari by train or bus (approx. 2H30). Try to arrive with plenty of time for exploration. Wander through the narrow winding streets in the “zona dei trulli” in the western part of town. Made of limestone with stone roofs these fairytale houses are a delight and tonight you can actually spend the night in one as many of these traditional houses are now accommodations for visitors.
Day 2: Walk to Locorotondo along Valle d’Itria Greenway
This morning make your way out into the surrounding countryside of green fields, olive groves and stone walls until you come upon the Valle d’Itria Greenway, an old aqueduct that has been converted into a walking/cycling path. Constant views over the wide limestone valleys which straddle this province will greet you.
Just after the village of San Marco descend from the aqueduct and take small country roads walking directly into Locorotondo. Named as one of the “Most Beautiful Villages in Italy” it has a marvellous terrace overlooking the Murgia, plateau. Sit in a bar overlooking this spectacular view and sample one of the great local wines, such as Salice Salentino. Explore the circular old quarter with its white-washed walls and houses with sharp-pointed roofs known as cummerse, many of which have been turned into hotels and B&B’s.
Day 3: Loop Walk via Martina Franca
This morning walk directly out of your accommodation into the surrounding valley, along small country lanes lined by stone walls, to the elegant Baroque town of Martina Franca. Admire its wrought iron balconies and rich portals, churches and monuments. In Piazza Plebiscito admire the façade of the Basilicia San Martino with its high relief frontage.
Situated at 450m above sea level on a hill in the Eastern Murgia plain this city of white alleyways and nobleman’s palaces is well worth an explore half way through today’s walk.
Day 4: Walk to Ostuni
Today a short transfer (20mins) brings you to the beginning of today’s walk. Follow tiny country roads at first with woods on a hill up to your right and views of the sea to your left. On today’s walk you will be encircled by the glorious Puglian scenery with intense green olive groves and the characteristic trulli houses dotted around the landscape.
As you get closer spot Ostuni, “the white city” or “la citta bianca” rising up in the distance. You have now left the Valle d’Itria and are closer to the sea which is only 8km away.
Ostuni has long been an awe-inspiring sight for those travelling across Puglia. Defensive walls and clusters of white-washed houses wind around the hillside, at the top of which sits the magnificent Gothic cathedral. The views from Ostuni are reason enough to make a trip here. Wonderful vistas abound, the best of which offer 360 degree panoramas of the surrounding countryside and the Adriatic Sea.
Day 5: Trajan Way to Ostuni
This morning, after a fortifying breakfast, a short transfer (20 mins) brings you to the the beginning of your walk along the Trajan Way and the Puglian section of the Via Francigena pilgrimage path. Make your way through typical countryside with ancient olive groves. From the beginning of your walk you can see your destination, Ostuni, as it stands on the hill in the distance.
Day 6: Train to Lecce. Free day to explore Lecce
Take the train to Lecce (1H). This town is Puglia’s Baroque masterpiece, built in soft cream limestone. Here you will be in awe of the dazzling architecture that you will see on every corner. Lecce has a history going back 2,500 years and still keeps up with the old traditions of making olive oil, ceramics and wine. Do not miss the Piazza del Duomo, originally built in 1144 and surrounded by charming buildings, or the Basilica di Santa Croce which has one of the finest and most intricate Baroque facades in Italy.
Wander into the ancient quarter through one of the magnificent city gates this evening and eat delicious local food in one of the many restaurants, from where you may view the evenings “passagiata”.
Day 7: Bus to Otranto. Otranto Loop Walk
Take a pleasant local bus ride (1H45) to the historic seaside town of Otranto. Like Lecce, it is within the area of Puglia known as Salento and also on the tip of the peninsula which is the heel of Italy’s boot and its eastern most town. On a clear day you can see both Albania and the island of Corfu in Greece! In Roman times it was an important commercial port and today you can explore its charming old town with its imposing castle.
If you wish you can take a loop walk which initially takes you through the old town and its maze of narrow streets and along the coast, before heading inland. It finishes by walking alongside a streamside path on the Strada Bonifica Indro. Also pass en route the Lake of Bauxite della Cava with its bright ochre coloured rocks.
Walk: 11 km
Day 8: Onward journey
From Lecce you can take a train to Bari Centre and then another train to the airport. (2h journey time). Or if you wish to fly out of Brindisi there is a direct bus from Lecce (40mins).
7 Nights in good quality B&B’s, and 3* and 4* hotels. The accommodation normally used is detailed below. However we may use alternatives of a similar standard should the dates you request not be available.
Solo Walkers & Single Rooms
This trip is available to solo walkers, although there is a supplement due to the fact that some of the costs (such as transfers) are not shared. Single rooms are available on request and a supplement is payable.
A breakfast will be provided by your accommodation every morning. Usually they are buffet-style or continental breakfasts. Dinners are not included, however there are options to dine out either at your accommodation (if they have a restaurant) and in the village and towns in which your accommodation is situated. Lunch is also not included, but you can find small stores in which to purchase items for a picnic lunch. In your route notes we give advice on where you can eat/pick up lunch.
Charming Trulli - Alberobello
These charming and very welcoming trulli houses are ideally located in the town centre of Alberobello. They all boast privacy and tranquillity with the added bonus of a central location.
Sotto le Cummerse - Locorotondo
The Sotto le Cummerse hotel was established in 2002. It is an Albergo Diffuso which is accommodation in scattered houses throughout the town in historic buildings that have been skilfully refurbished (Albergo Diffuso).
Hotel La Terra - Ostuni
This 4* hotel is located in an historic building dating back to the 13th century and is completely renovated, respecting the traditions and characteristics of the old town. The 17 rooms provide comfort, historic architecture and elegant decor.
Grand Hotel Lecce - Lecce
This hotel has a perfect location for your itinerary as it is located only 100m from the train station and just a few minutes walk from the historic quarter of Lecce.
You can start this walking tour anytime between April and October. Please bear in mind that July can be very hot for walking, During these months please take plenty of water, a hat and sunscreen. This trip is not available in August due to the high season and the difficulties of confirming accommodation during this time.
Please try to avoid departing on Monday's as buses from Lecce to Otranto are limited on Sunday's.
Your bags will be transferred from your accommodation as per your itinerary and moved onto your next overnight stay. We ask you to limit your luggage to one bag of up to 20kg per person. On this itinerary (Days 2, 4 & 6) you will have private transfers to the beginning of your walks, but you need to take your luggage with you as the driver will take it onwards to your next destination. Also please note when taking the train from Ostuni to Lecce you will be carrying your own luggage, so please pack accordingly. In other words pack light!
The route is at times waymarked but outside of this there will be little way-marking. Detailed routes note and GPS data will be provided for you via the Macs Adventure App. Further information will be provided upon receipt of your booking.
Grade & Terrain
This trip is graded easy to moderate. Puglia is relatively flat and the elevation gains and losses will be minimal. You will mostly be walking on small country roads, lanes and tracks, plus some trails. Please be aware that when on country roads and lanes that you will likely be walking on tarmac, so it is important to be prepared for this.
It is a requirement of booking this tour with Macs Adventure that you have suitable travel insurance which covers you for the activity and emergency evacuation and hospital care.
The distances and ascent/descents are approximations of the recommended routes. Please be prepared by packing all necessary items, for example, proper rain gear (jacket and pants), sun hat, sunscreen. Your information pack has a detailed equipment list which includes standard walking gear such as good walking boots or shoes, warm and waterproof clothes for the cooler months and lightweight clothing for summer, and a day pack.
Getting to Alberobello
By Air: You can fly into Bari Airport which is the closest one to Alberobello. There are daily flights from the UK to Bari and from other major European hubs.
To get to Alberobello you can take a train direct to Bari Centrale Stazione. It is a 10 minute walk to the platform, the journey takes 20 minutes and they run approximately every 20mins to 1H depending on the time of day. More information on the train times may be found here www.ferrovienordbarese.it/times. To reach Alberobello from Bari Centrale Stazione you can board a local direct train. The journey takes approximately 1H45 and the trains leave about every hour.
We can also arrange a private taxi transfer from Bari Airport to Alberobello. Please ask your Destination and Adventure Specialist for details.
Getting from Lecce
The closest airport to Lecce is Brindisi Airport. You can take a direct bus from Lecce City Terminal to the airport, running approximately every 1-2 hours, depending on the time of day. The journey takes 40 mins. We suggest taking a taxi to the City Terminal Bus Station from your accommodation. You can find timetables here at Puglia Air Bus.
You can also fly out of Bari Airport if you wish. Trains run from Lecce to Bari Centrale every hour or so and take about 1H20. You will find schedules on the Trenitalia website. As on arrival you can then take a train to the airport from here.
- 7 Nights in good qualityB&B's, 3 & 4* hotels
- 7 Breakfasts
- Baggage transfers
- Transfers on Days 2, 4 and 6
- Information Pack, maps, route notes, GPX tracks, access to our smartphone app
- 24-7 Emergency telephone support
- Travel insurance (required)
- Travel to Alberobello
- Travel from Lecce
- Lunches & Dinners
- Train fares
- Tourist taxes (approx €1.50 per day)
- Taxi fare Ostuni to Ostuni Station Day 7 (approx. €10-15)
- Drinks and snacks
- Personal equipment
- Additional nights before, during or after the walk
- Single room supplement if required
- Solo Walker Supplement
We are often asked the following questions and we hope that you will find the answers useful.
How fit do I need to be?
This trip is graded easy to moderate. Puglia is relatively flat and the elevation gains and losses will be minimal.
How far in advance do I need to book?
We suggest you book as soon as your plans are finalised as the region is extremely popular, especially in May, June and September.
What personal equipment do I need?
You will need good walking shoes/boots, comfortable walking clothes, and dependent on when you are travelling; waterproof jacket and trousers, a daypack and hats/gloves etc. Our info packs have a list of all equipment to bring on your walk.
When is the best time of year?
If you prefer to walk in cooler months then April, May, June and September/October will be perfect for you. The summer months can be very hot (although this tour is not even available in August). We advise that if you want to travel In July that you set out on your walks early, so avoiding the midday heat and also take a plenty of water, a hat and sunscreen.