Puglia on Gravel bike: from Bari to MateraPuglia & BasilicataDifficulty path:
In recent years, a number of paths have sprung up linking Matera to important localities, along traces of ancient routes immersed in a welcoming and unique natural environment.
One of these is the route along the Via Peuceta, which connects Bari to Matera and can be cycled in three stages. A journey that starts from the Basilica of San Nicola, a pilgrimage destination and an imposing symbol of the city of Bari, and leads to the splendid Matera passing through the Alta Murgia National Park. Among olive groves and oak forests, steppe expanses and canyons, we will encounter medieval villages and rock churches, trulli and masserie, hospitality and authenticity.
It is a splendid itinerary for off-road enthusiasts and for those looking for that extra bit of adventure.
Join the GROUP TRIP
21/09 > 25/09/2023
Book your PRIVATE TOUR:
choose your date and travel with your own group, always accompanied by one expert local tour leader.
The best bread in Italy
Majestic olive groves and centuries-old oak forests
The splendid landscapes of the Murgia
Places of Knights Templar and Pilgrims
Cycling through endless golden fields
The beautiful and surprising Gravina in Puglia
→ If you prefer an even slower journey, take a look at the programme of Walk the Camino Materano.
Individual arrival in the beautiful capital of Puglia.
Try to arrive in time to visit Bari: the imposing Norman-Swabian Castle, the characteristic Via delle Orecchiette, the legendary Basilica of San Nicola and the lively seafront. In the meantime, look for typical places where you can taste the typical focaccia with tomatoes and olives, the panzerotto and polenta sgagliozze.
Stage Bari - Santeramo in Colle
56km, +611m -146m
Meeting with the guide, fellow travellers and, for those who do not bring their own, with rented gravel bikes.
Pedaling through the lively labyrinth of Bari Vecchia and following sensations and scents, we will get lost in the alleys until we reach the imposing Basilica of San Nicola, which houses the remains of the saint of Myra. From here we will leave Bari and the coast to go further inland, scattered with expanses of olive groves, small trulli and dry stone walls, all true symbols of Puglia.
Here some curiosities about the trulli.
Riding our bikes through the gentle countryside, at some point we will see farms and oak forests appear: we have climbed onto the Murge plateau. After passing the medieval towns of Bitetto and Cassano delle Murge, the stage ends in Santeramo in Colle, on the highest step of the Murgian plateau. Here it is typical to eat at 'ready-made stoves', meat barbecues set up inside butchers that offer seating. Have a nice dinner!
Overnight in Santeramo in Colle.
Stage Santeramo in Colle - Gravina in Puglia
49km, +435m -562m
The second stage of the Cammino Materano by bike winds through the evocative landscapes of the Murgia karst plateau. Open landscapes that change with the seasons from deep green to golden yellow: welcome to the Alta Murgia National Park.
From Santeramo we will cycle through the hills from which the view sweeps far, up to Altamura, over wide expanses of wheat and feather grass. We will cycle along sheep tracks and ancient medieval cart roads, skirting the rock settlements of Grotta Sant’Angelo and Fornello; we will stop at Masseria Scalera for a tasty break of mozzarella and cheeses.
Arriving at the gates of Altamura, we will walk through the winding medieval streets leading to the splendid Cathedral: the white city of Frederick II will welcome us with the scent of its PDO bread and focaccia. The end of the stage is Gravina in Puglia, a charming village with the warm colours of calcarenite, the stone of the canyon in which the town is carved and built.
From the Cathedral, the view of the canyon (the "gravina" in fact) is beautiful: a postcard with the bridge-aqueduct and the rocky villages, with the sound of flowing water in the background.
Overnight in Gravina in Puglia.
Stage Gravina in Puglia - Matera
53km, +880m -840m
Heir to the ancient Sidion, a Peucetian and then Roman city, Gravina in Puglia will see us pedalling up the Botromagno hill, which preserves its ancient remains.
From up there, the view wanders off towards the vast landscapes on the border between Puglia and Lucania, where one of the most important wooded areas in the region appears: the Bosco Difesa Grande, which bears witness to the ancient forests that once covered Puglia.
We will pedal along evocative paths among age-old oaks and conifers and reach the Sanctuary of Santa Maria di Picciano: from the top of the hill the view is spectacular and Matera is getting closer and closer. Welcome to Basilicata!
Here we are on the shores of Lake San Giuliano, in a rich vegetation that is the ideal habitat for various species of birds. From here we begin the slow ascent towards our destination, pedalling white roads through wheat fields. The view of Matera, enchanting in its combination of architecture and nature, will suddenly open, leaving us breathless. From the Casalnuovo district we will emerge as if by magic in the natural amphitheater of this city carved into the soft rock and overlooking the majestic ravine, the kingdom of the lesser kestrels.
An unmissable postcard before getting lost in the streets of the city.
Breakfast and last goodbyes to the travel companions. Let us know if you fancy a guided tour of the city after taking a look at our blog.
Tour programme variations
Due to organizational reasons, weather conditions or provisions issued by local authorities, the itinerary may be subject to some changes before and/or during the holiday.
Our offer includes
- 4 nights with breakfast in shared double/twin room
- Welcome dinner day 1 (drink not included)
- Local English speaking guide
- Luggage transportation
- Transfer IN and Transfer OUT
- Bike rental
- Other meals and drinks
- Entrance fees and tips
- Hotel tourist taxes
- Insurance and what's not listed as Included
Departures and prices
Supplements per person
This bike tour retraces the ancient Cammino Materano along the Via Peuceta and requires good training to tackle the numerous off-road vehicles.
The length of the stages varies from 44 to 63 kilometers a day, with stops for visits and refreshments.
Accommodation in Charming B&B and selected hotel.
All rooms are ensuite.
- 1 night in Bari - B&B al Pescatore
- 1 night in Santeramo in Colle - Volante Urban Design Hotel
- 1 night in Gravina in Puglia - Il Borgo B&B
- 1 night in Matera - Casa di Ele
In case of limited availability we choose an alternative position with similar characteristics. Alternative details will be noted in the updated service list.
5 breakfasts and 1 dinner included. All other meals are not included.
GROUP TRIP (min 6 - max 12 people) for cheerful and proactive people! You will share a travel experience together with new people with the same desire for an active holiday full of wonderful memories. By participating in our group proposals, you will always be accompanied and guided by one of our dynamic local guides.
PRIVATE TOUR: for this tour departures are also possible for small pre-arranged groups of friends, families and colleagues. Also in this case the presence of an expert local guide is guaranteed during the scheduled excursions.
→ Departures every day on request.
Choose your departure date, who you are going with and ask us for a personalised quote!
You will be accompanied during the excursions and dinners by one of our expert tour leader, coordinator of the group and passionate about travel, nature and the territory visited. He/she will support you, becoming a travel companion and trying to meet the needs of the group, while being attentive to individual requests.
He/she will help make your vacation authentic, relaxing and fun.
A few days before departure you will receive by email the documentation containing the latest information relating to your holiday.
Reaching Bari is very easy. It is inserted in all the best circuits and roads between North and South of Italy.
BY TRAIN. Trenitalia connects the main Italian cities with Bari. On Viaggiatreno you can find update informations about train routes.
BY AIR. Bari Palese airport is connected with the most important Italian and foreign cities by the main airlines and the low cost ones. It is well connected with many flights, to the city centre by Metro and train approximately every 20 minutes. More info on the website Aeroporti di Puglia.
BY BUS. Bari is also accessible by bus. Here some links to the major operating companies: Marinobus, Baltour & Flixbus, Busmiccolis, Buscenter.
BY CAR. The main highways are the A14 Bologna-Taranto and the A16 Napoli-Canosa. maps.google.com can help you with the directions.
Back to Bari
From Matera you can reach Bari by trains or buses of Ferrovie Appulo Lucane.
→ If you prefer to travel in total comfort, you can book a private transfer on the days of arrival and departure.