Alberobello – 23.6 miles & 18.2 miles
Today was the first real day of riding. We broke the ride into 2 segments with a break for a cappuccino, lunch and tour of the town of Alberobello. Our charismatic guide Nemo shared his knowledge of his beloved city, the first known Trulli city dating back to the 14th century. All Trullis were constructed with white limestone and without mortar so that they could quickly be dismantled in order to evade taxes.
Day one we did a short 12 mile ride to get used to our bikes. We road to the coolest little local coffee/bar shop. They had the most amazing ceramics made from local artists.
Matera via Palagianello – 40.2 miles
After breakfast at the Maseria we rode through the trulli filled coutryside to the town of Palagianello. The town was founded in 1102. We enjoyed a yummy lunch at a funny cafe in town (my Moms Italian was very helpful). After lunch we had a 45 minute drive to the ancient cave town of Matera. We met our fabulous guide for sweats and cappuccinos before entering the historical center know as Sassi. In the 3rd Century BC the city was allegedly founded by the Romans. The city was dug into the rocks. In 1993 was declared “World Heritage” by UNESCO. The best way to see Matera is to wonder around the winding streets, we laughed that this never would be allowed in the US, too many obstacles!
It was a 2 hour drive back to the Masseria. For dinner we went into the old town of Ostuni (10 minute drive), which is known as the white city. We ate at the charming family restaurant Taverna della Gelosia. It is a popular local spot that was chalk-a-block full of the owners collection of shadow box framed religious relics. As with all of Puglia they are known for their appetizers. Try the pasta nera, it is a medieval recipe.
Ristorante Taverna della Gelosia
Vicolo Tommaso Andriola, 26, 72017 Ostuni BR, Italy
+39 0831 334736
Cellino San Marco (Le Veli) – 39.9 Miles
Today we rode to the Li Veli winery with a stop at Luigino D’Errico in Mesagne for cappucino made by Luigino himself. From there we rode to the beautiful winnery Li Veli in the Salento area. We enjoyed a beautiful private lunch with wine tasting followed by a tour of the winery.
For dinner we went to Al Solito Posto. This is unlike any pizza place I have ever been to. Loved the contempory fun interior. Again it was hard not to fill up on the unbelievable appetizers.
Al Solito Posto – gourmet pizza
Via Cesare Braico 37, 72017, Ostuni, Italy
Tel. +39 0831 305850
Martina Franco & Olive Oil Tasting at Trisole – 38 miles
Today we stopped for cappuccinos in the beautiful historic town of Martina Franca. The Gran Café, is located directly outside of the city gates. We had time for a very quick walk around of the city and then back in the saddle to ride to the Family Owned Trisole Olive farm.
We were so lucky to be at the olive farm during harvest. Outside the farm there was an olive tree that is over 1000 years old. Walking into the harvest area the smell was overwhelmingly delicious. We saw two processes of making olive oil. The traditional process with old stone that grind the pit and the olive which produces a more bitter and strong olive oil. And the new way which the pit is removed from the olive and produces a more delicate taste.
For dinner we went into Ostuni for cooking class. We dined at the same delicious restaurant Osteria del Tempo Perso.
Gran Café – cappuccino break
Piazza Venti Settembre 7/A, 74015 Martina Franca
Tel +39 329 375 9082
Osteria del Tempo Perso – for dinner
Via G Tanzarella Vitale, 47 – 72017 OSTUNI
Tel. +39 0831 304819
Cycling Along the Coast – 37 miles
Today we skirted the ocean with its numerous beach clubs and miles of undeveloped beaches. We stopped at another local coffee shop overlooking the Adriatic before doing a climb up to the mountains. We ended the biking portion of the trip at a beachside restaurant.
We enjoyed a fun and information wine tasting at the Masseria and followed by yet another wonderful dinner.
I can not say enough wonderful things about our biking tour with Cicloposse. For me it is very important to experience the local culuture. The places Marco chose were as local as it gets. Some of the coffee shops, cafes and bars I could not even find online. I felt like we got a true Italian experience. The bikes were top of the line. Marco and Tomaso were wonderful and always kept us laughing. Julianna was behind the scenes and did everything to make our trip seamless and customized to our groups desires and abilities. We are already looking forward to our next adventure.