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Self-guided bike tour in Salento

Overview
Location
Accommodation
Getting There

This self-guided bike tour takes you on a circular route around Italy’s heel, starting and ending in the beautiful Baroque city of Lecce and stopping at the equally lovely coastal towns of Gallipoli, Leuca and Otranto. Ride through ancient olive groves and along quiet coastal roads, through tiny villages and past spectacular beaches that are the envy of the Mediterranean. You will average around 50kms per day. This break is available as both a 5-night and a 7-night package, see itinerary below for further details. Contact us for availability, price from € 540 per person

Highlights

  • Explore the beautiful Baroque towns of Lecce, Gallipoli and Otranto
  • Stop off for a rest at beautiful sandy beaches along the route
  • Enjoy the excellent regional cuisine

Included

  • 5 or 7 nights’ accommodation along the route
  • Bed & breakfast basis
  • Trekking bike hire and accessories (see below)
  • Luggage transfers
  • Detailed itinerary and map
  • Telephone assistance 8.00am - 9.00pm

Excluded

  • Flights
  • Airport transfers
  • Meals & beverages - unless otherwise specified above
  • Local taxes where applicable
  • Everything not specified above

Itinerary

7-night tour itinerary. The 5-night tour excludes days 2 and 6.

Day One:
Arrival in Lecce and check-in.

Day Two: Around Lecce
Your bikes will be delivered to the hotel around 8.30am.
Today is a flat route with short unpaved woodland sections that takes you through the countryside and then back down along the coast. On the way you can stop off at the recently restored Santa Maria in Cerrate Abbey, on the old Via Francigena.
Overnight in Lecce
Distance: 45km

Day Three: Lecce - Gallipoli
Another flat route today as you head out of Lecce to Gallipoli on the Ionian coast, passing through vineyards, olive groves and small villages on the way. Just before you reach the coastal road you can stop off at the beatiful Porto Selvaggio (leaving your bikes at the top of the hill and walking down). A lovely, unspoilt spot for a dip in the sea, though not ideal for sunbathing. There are small sandy beaches to stop off at before you reach Gallipoli. Here you can go for a wander through the warren-like lanes of the old town, where you can enjoy spectacular sunsets along with your aperitivo.
Overnight in Gallipoli
Distance: 50km

Day Four: Gallipoli – Leuca
Take the coastal road south and maybe stop off at one of the golden sandy beaches at Baia Verde or Pescoluso before heading on to Punta Ristola to enjoy the views over Leuca at the very tip of the peninsula. Leuca itself doesn't have an old town, but has a number of beautiful villas built in the mid 1800s in all kinds of weird and wonderful styles.
Overnight in Leuca
Distance: 50km

Day Five: Leuca – Otranto
Today is the prettiest, and the most hilly, part of the route. There are lots of opportunities to stop off on the way, including the tiny cove at Ciolo just outside Leuca with its emerald green waters and caves, a coffee or lunch stop at the pretty village of Castro (uphill pedalling required) or Santa Cesarea Terme on the coast, the Zinzalusa caves (around € 6 pp entry) and the small beach at Porto Badisco just before you get to Otranto.
Overnight in Otranto
Distance: 55km

Day Six: Otranto and around
A short, pleasant ride easily done in a morning takes you inland through olive groves and wheat fields with some brief tracts of unpaved roads. Around halfway you can stop off and visit the La Cutura botanic garden. Afterwards you could head to one of the beaches just to the north of Otranto, like the beautiful Baia dei Turchi.
Overnight in Otranto
Distance: 30km

Day Seven: Otranto – Lecce
Head north along the Adriatic coast stopping off wherever you like for your last bit of beach time (like the large bay at Torre dell'Orso) then inland through the Le Cesine Natural Park and the village of Acaya before arriving back in Lecce.
Overnight in Lecce and end of tour
Distance: 55km

Please note that the itinerary could undergo some changes before or during the tour depending on weather conditions and other factors.
Luggage transfers: Luggage needs to be left at reception by 9am and will be dropped off at your next hotel by 5pm at the latest.

Accessories included with bike hire: front and rear light, bike computer, lock, helmet, waterproof rear bag, handlebar bag or map holder, 1 puncture repair kit per two bikes.

Please Note

This tour is on largely flat roads with occasional hilly sections, in the main on quiet inland and coastal roads. It is suitable for anyone with a reasonable level of fitness. Bike insurance is not included in the package, please make sure that bike hire is covered by your insurance policy. In case of loss, damage or theft you will be liable for full costs. As this is a self-guided break you should be able to perform basic bike maintenance like puncture repair.

Extras/Upgrades

This tour is available with either 3-star (standard) or 4-star (superior) accommodation, please let us know which you would prefer. A trekking (hybrid) bike is included in the package, all-road and e-bikes are available for a supplement, contact us for details.

Salento is the heel in Italy’s boot, part of the Puglia region. From Brindisi, across to Taranto and down to the tip at Leuca, the area offers a fascinating history, Baroque architecture, beautiful towns and villages, a spectacular coastline dotted with sandy beaches and secluded coves, as well as some of the best seafood you will ever eat.

Lecce, the start and end point of the tour and the main city in the area, is often nicknamed the ‘Florence of the south’ due to its magnificent Baroque buildings and monuments.

Both Gallipoli on the Ionian coast (inside of the heel) and Otranto on the Adriatic coast also offer beautiful historic centres and a fun nightlife – Gallipoli in particular has a lively gay scene.

The beaches in Salento are among the best in Italy, long stretches of golden sand and azure sea are bound to lure you from your bike, so make sure you take a swimming costume and towel on your rides. There are a mix of public and private beaches (or 'lidos'), some with kiosks and restaurants open during the summer season, others with no facilities so you will need to take along a packed lunch.

You will be staying at B&Bs or hotels along the route, with breakfast included.

The standard tour includes 3* accommodation, while the superior tour includes 4* accommodation.

7 night tour:

2+1 nights in Lecce (2 nights at the start, one at the end)

1 night in Gallipoli

1 night in Leuca

2 nights in Otranto

You will be provided a full itinerary with the names of the hotels upon booking. If you have any special requests please let us know before you book.

Nearest Airport: Brindisi (50km) 40 mins

Other airports: Bari (167km) 1 hour 50 mins

By Car:

As you won’t need a car during your stay and will not be staying in one place, we do not recommend car hire for this break.

By Public Transport:

There is a direct airport bus from Brindisi to Lecce bus station that takes 30-40 mins (approx € 8 pp). From there you can take a taxi to your hotel (should cost around € 10-12).

From Bari you can get the bus to Bari central station (around 20 mins) and from there take a direct train to Lecce (around 1h 20 mins).

By Private Transfer:

A taxi from Brindisi airport to Lecce will cost around € 60 one way.

Overview

This self-guided bike tour takes you on a circular route around Italy’s heel, starting and ending in the beautiful Baroque city of Lecce and stopping at the equally lovely coastal towns of Gallipoli, Leuca and Otranto. Ride through ancient olive groves and along quiet coastal roads, through tiny villages and past spectacular beaches that are the envy of the Mediterranean. You will average around 50kms per day. This break is available as both a 5-night and a 7-night package, see itinerary below for further details. Contact us for availability, price from € 540 per person

Highlights

  • Explore the beautiful Baroque towns of Lecce, Gallipoli and Otranto
  • Stop off for a rest at beautiful sandy beaches along the route
  • Enjoy the excellent regional cuisine

Included

  • 5 or 7 nights’ accommodation along the route
  • Bed & breakfast basis
  • Trekking bike hire and accessories (see below)
  • Luggage transfers
  • Detailed itinerary and map
  • Telephone assistance 8.00am - 9.00pm

Excluded

  • Flights
  • Airport transfers
  • Meals & beverages - unless otherwise specified above
  • Local taxes where applicable
  • Everything not specified above

Please Note

This tour is on largely flat roads with occasional hilly sections, in the main on quiet inland and coastal roads. It is suitable for anyone with a reasonable level of fitness. Bike insurance is not included in the package, please make sure that bike hire is covered by your insurance policy. In case of loss, damage or theft you will be liable for full costs. As this is a self-guided break you should be able to perform basic bike maintenance like puncture repair.

Extras/Upgrades

This tour is available with either 3-star (standard) or 4-star (superior) accommodation, please let us know which you would prefer. A trekking (hybrid) bike is included in the package, all-road and e-bikes are available for a supplement, contact us for details.

Location

Location

Salento is the heel in Italy’s boot, part of the Puglia region. From Brindisi, across to Taranto and down to the tip at Leuca, the area offers a fascinating history, Baroque architecture, beautiful towns and villages, a spectacular coastline dotted with sandy beaches and secluded coves, as well as some of the best seafood you will ever eat.

Lecce, the start and end point of the tour and the main city in the area, is often nicknamed the ‘Florence of the south’ due to its magnificent Baroque buildings and monuments.

Both Gallipoli on the Ionian coast (inside of the heel) and Otranto on the Adriatic coast also offer beautiful historic centres and a fun nightlife – Gallipoli in particular has a lively gay scene.

The beaches in Salento are among the best in Italy, long stretches of golden sand and azure sea are bound to lure you from your bike, so make sure you take a swimming costume and towel on your rides. There are a mix of public and private beaches (or 'lidos'), some with kiosks and restaurants open during the summer season, others with no facilities so you will need to take along a packed lunch.

Accommodation

Accommodation

You will be staying at B&Bs or hotels along the route, with breakfast included.

The standard tour includes 3* accommodation, while the superior tour includes 4* accommodation.

7 night tour:

2+1 nights in Lecce (2 nights at the start, one at the end)

1 night in Gallipoli

1 night in Leuca

2 nights in Otranto

You will be provided a full itinerary with the names of the hotels upon booking. If you have any special requests please let us know before you book.

Getting There

Getting There

Nearest Airport: Brindisi (50km) 40 mins

Other airports: Bari (167km) 1 hour 50 mins

By Car:

As you won’t need a car during your stay and will not be staying in one place, we do not recommend car hire for this break.

By Public Transport:

There is a direct airport bus from Brindisi to Lecce bus station that takes 30-40 mins (approx € 8 pp). From there you can take a taxi to your hotel (should cost around € 10-12).

From Bari you can get the bus to Bari central station (around 20 mins) and from there take a direct train to Lecce (around 1h 20 mins).

By Private Transfer:

A taxi from Brindisi airport to Lecce will cost around € 60 one way.

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