Puglia & Basilicata

8-Day Tour of Southern Italy 

September 18-26, 2017

Puglia and Basilicata 

Discover the heel of the boot, the heart of authentic Italy. 

Baroque architecture, the fairytale village of Alberobello, white sand beaches with pristine water, and streets lined by olive groves, Southern Italy's two main regions are a hidden gem.

Travel Italian Style is excited to be one of the few tour operators to bring you there!

Get ready for a true southern experience, where native historian guides and a local Italian family will introduce you to delicious slow-food cuisine, teach you local music traditions, accompany you to breathtaking mountain towns, and of course introduce you to local food and wine!

Delight in the untouched regions of Southern Italy

1. Did you know this region produces about 40% of Italy's olive oil, is the home of UNESCO cities dating back to 7th Century BC, and that it produces more wine than any other locations in Italy? 

2. Travel & Leisure Magazine says it best: "Despite its cultural richness and architecture, Puglia is still one of the least explored regions of Italy, offering a coastline bathed by two crystal blue seas: The Adriatic and the Ionian."  

3. Basilicata and Puglia are known for their Burrata cheese as well as Durum wheat, which is used to make their local pasta and bread unique!


Your week:

Learn the traditions of Puglia: Our local partners start by giving us a warm autumn welcome! You will participate in an olive oil harvest, pasta making classes, wine and cheese tastings, a private local music gathering, and much more.

Visit Alberobello and Matera: 
Enjoy a visit to two of Southern Italy's remarkable UNESCO Heritage Sites. You will be fascinated by the 14th century fairytale village filled with limestone, conical-roofed trulli. Plus, you'll enjoy the "Sassi di Matera', dating back to 7th century BC!

Walk the streets of picturesque Puglia: White-washed buildings, miles of blue seas, charming churches, and breathtaking cliffs are just some highlights of your day exploring Polignano a Mare and Ostuni. 

Open your mind to hidden villages of the Dolomites: Allow your breath to be taken away by the medieval mountain towns of Pietrapertosa and Castelmezzano, known as "a world of gold." You will, of course, get a chance to taste the local specialties made by natives of the region!

Discover the "Florence of the South": Lonely Planet says, "If Puglia was a movie, Lecce would be cast as the starring role." Lecce is a beautiful baroque city that has been known to have the same charm as our beloved Firenze up north. You will kick the day off with a guided tour by a native from the region, who is know for bringing guests to the best pastry shop in town! 


Meet your host:
Cassandra Lena Santoro, CEO + Founder 

Cassandra Santoro is the CEO and Founder of Travel Italian Style. As a personal trip planner, Cassandra is an expert in Italian travel with a focus on authentic and inspiring experiences. She also leads motivational talks and can most recently be found at TEDxDHBWMannheim

Travel Italian Style + Cassandra's story has been covered by national and international press. Some highlights have been the Los Angeles Times, L'Italo Americano, the National Organization of Italian American Women, Oggi Today, and iHeartRadio

Our partners: 

We are honored to partner with a local family from the Basilicata region to give you the true Italian experience. They will welcome you to their beautiful farm, a Masseria, and are excited to introduce you to back-door Italy.


Your home for the week:

Your first six nights will be enjoyed in a typical Masseria (farmhouse) in the Basilicata countryside, 10km from the ancient city of Matera. The home is owned and operated by a delightful local Italian family.

This rustic farmhouse boasts an olive oil grove, private pool, communal terrace (inspired by the terraces of the Sassi of Matera), and an organic farm, which the owners use to create local, authentic meals daily. 

You close the week in the baroque city of Lecce, where you will experience a 19th century palace turned luxury B & B. Also operated by local Italians, this city center accommodation is steps away from the beautiful Piazza Duomo.

Your B&B owners strive to create a peaceful, bright, and carefree environment for their guests and they prove so with their modern decor, central location, and organic daily breakfasts.


Your tour includes: 

  • Airport pick up at Bari International Airport
  • Airport group drop off at Brindisi International Airport
  • 6 nights at a charming family-run masseria in Basiciliata
  • 2 nights at a city center restored palace in Lecce
  • All ground transportation 
  • Bilingual tour assistant for the week
  • Daily breakfast
  • Most lunches, dinners or apericena
  • Guided travel to Ostuni, Polignano a Mare, Pietrapertosa and Castelmezzano, and UNESCO Sites Alberobello and Matera
  • Fresh pasta-making cooking lesson
  • Participation in olive oil harvest and trip to olive press 
  • Intimate local music concert at the farm
  • Half-day walking tour of Lecce with local pastry tasting
  • Airline concierge to assist with booking flights

2% of your purchase goes toward fulfilling a student's travel dream. Read more about our commitment to FLYTE here.


$3,700 USD / pp based on double occupancy

Flights and Travel Insurance not included | Single room request? Please contact us.



I have never heard of Basilicata or Puglia, where are they located?
They are located on the heel and the arch of the boot of Italy. 

Is there a lot of walking on this trip?
We always say "bring your walking shoes to Italy!" but overall this will be a comfortable and fun filled trip. The toughest of the walks will be in Matera. You can keep active by going on morning runs or taking a mountain bike for a ride while staying in the masseria (farmhouse).

What is the average temperature?
Average temperature ranges from 73-80 F.

Why are only "most meals" included, but not all meals?
From past trips we learned:

1. Most of our organized meals are served...well...Italian Style!! So... they can be a bit filling. Thus, we left some time for you to skip a meal (if you are full) or get to enjoy something a bit lighter at your leisure.

2. Diets, restrictions, and allergies..oh my! We understand the pressure of traveling with these requests and we always accommodate in the best possible way. However, we now offer some time for you to enjoy a meal of your choice with no stress! But not to worry, there will be no shortage of food, just in case you were wondering!!

Do I have to attend every day trip?
Of course not! We hope you do but you are always welcome to stay back and enjoy 'you' time or coordinate another trip on your own. However, please note this does not change the price of the trip.

Can I come as a single?
Yes, and we would love to have you! We do not match up roommates so you are welcome to purchase the room at the single rate, which is a slight additional fee (so you can have the room all to yourself).

What do you mean by "flight concierge"?
Each tour guest receives a personal assistant (flight concierge) who will research and select flights based on your preferences and budget. They will assist with the booking process, always finding the best deals on the best airlines. Following the booking, the team will monitor your flight to and from Italy; if there are any changes or updates they will know first, via email or text, and pass you all the information! It's like having a personal assistant, just for your flights. They can even assist with using your miles or points for an extra fee.

I would like to extend my time in Italy, can you help me plan?
Yes! For a special rate I would be happy to arrange a plan for you to visit Rome, Amalfi Coast, Naples or anywhere you choose! Let’s chat and I can propose the best package for you!