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Puglia cycling trip 2020

We did a cycle trip to Puglia a couple of years ago - see:  but this one is to a different part of Puglia.  We still go to Matera this time but the rest of the trip is different and we don't do the Trulli houses.  Instead we cycle through different historic Italian towns, then along the beautiful coast.

The route is mainly downhill or flat on quiet roads -as usual cycling for softies!  You will have to carry your own stuff in panniers while cycling.

The route

Make sure your hotels from Matera to Barletta have somewhere to put the bike overnight as you are normally responsible if the bike is lost or stolen.

Day 0 21st March Fly to Bari train from airport to Bari overnight in Bari, leave any luggage not needed for cycling in Bari at hotel
Olive Tree (P, J. P, M)

Casa Piacquadio (L, S, S)

Day 1 22nd March Train to Matera, journey time around 2 hours arrive lunchtime explore Matera, incredible cave city one of the most spectacular cities in Italy and a Unesco world heritage site: just google it to see the amazing photos.
overnight in Matera
Affittacamere Passarelli 9 (P, J, P, M, L, S, S)
Airbnb apartment in Matera (G, C)

Day 2 23rd March More time in Matera, collect bikes
Overnight in Matera
Affittacamere Passarelli 9 (P, J, P, M, L, S, S)
Airbnb apartment in Matera (G, C)

Day 3 24th March Train to Altamura journey time around 30 minutes, arrive around 11:30, spend a little time in Altamura and then start cycling.  18 miles   Cycle though Cassano delle Murge to Acquavia dell Fonti
Overnight in Acquaviva dell Fonti  (Acquaviva delle Fonti (about 20 miles south of Bari) NOT a suburb of Bari with a similar name (eg Acquavia dell Fonti).
B&B Via Roma 15 (P, J, P, G)
La Maison  (C)

Palace B&B (M)
B&B Bellini Appartamento (L, S, S)

Day 4 25th March Cycle from Acquavia dell Fonti to Palo del Colle via Adelfia and Cassamassima and Bitetto 29 miles
Overnight in Palo del Colle (some people may need to overnight in Auricarro (about 2 miles away) due to limited accommodation options in Palo
B&B Il Principe (P, J, P)
Savarini (G, C)

Nona Lella (M)
Vice Apartment, Palo del Colle (L, S, S)

Day 5 26th March Palo del Colle to Corato via Terlizzi  24 miles
Overnight in Corato (lots of accommodation in Corato)
Albergo Tripoli (P, J, P, G, C, M, L, S, S)

Day 6 27th March Corato to Barletta on the coast via Andria  22 miles (option of side trip along coast extra 5miles each way to Fiumara)
Overnight in Barletta (Plenty of accommodation)
La Disfida Di Barletta   (P, J, P, G, C, M)

Cavalieri Guest House (L, S, S)

Day 7 28th March Barletta to Trani along coast 10 miles (bikes to be collected at Trani) explore Trani
Train from Trani back to Bari (about 40 minutes)
Overnight in Bari, collect luggage.  [If short of leave, may be possible to fly out that evening but that depends on timing of flights]
Olive Tree (P, J, P, M)

Casa Piacquadio, Bari (L, S, S)

Day 8 29th March explore Bari until time to fly home

London Gatwick to Bari  EZY8365 Departure 15:50 Sat 21st Mar North Terminal Arrival 19:35
(P, J, G, C, M)

Ryanair FR 1905 21.3.20 Stansted 16.55 to Bari 20.40
(S, S, L)

Return EZY8366 Departure 12:45 Sun 29th Mar Arrival 14:45
(P, J, G, C, S, S, L,M)

Bike hire   € 80 per bike (5 days hire + collection in Trani)

Name    Type of Frame preferred   Height of person
P           Diamond frame                  165cm
J           Diamond Frame                 165cm
P           Diamond Frame                 174cm
L           Diamond Frame                 160cm
G          Step through                       152cm
C          Diamond Frame                 181cm
S          Step through                      163cm
M          Diamond Frame                165cm
S          Diamond Frame                163cm

We collect bikes from the shop in Matera on  the afternoon of the 23rd March and have them collected around lunchtime at Trani on 28th March.

Helmets can be hired from the shop when we collect the bikes.  According to website:  bicycles are equipped with: a cycle-computer, signal lamps, rear pack frame with side bags and an emergency pack (universal tools for small repairs — spare tube)."  Need to double check about locks.

Getting to Bari from Airport
The train (FR2, grey) takes around 17 minutes and costs 5 Euros. Tickets are available at the airport.  There is also a metro, which is called Ferrovia Metropolitana (FM2, yellow) which costs the same.  The trains run 2 to 4 times an hour.  The last train from the airport departs around 23:35
Bus number 16, operated by AMTAB, is the cheapest but least convenient.  It leaves at least once an hour and runs between the airport and Piazza Aldo Moro square near the main railway station Bari Centrale. Travel time is about 50 minutes as the bus makes multiple stops.  A one-way ticket costs € 1 and the last bus departs from the airport around 22:20.  Consult website and timetable bus number 16 for more information.

There is also a shuttle bus, operated by Tempesta Autoservizi, which runs once every hour from and to Piazza Aldo Moro and only makes 2 stops and has a more direct route than bus number 16.  The travel time is only 30 minutes and costs € 4 and tickets are available on the bus.  Thre last bus leaves around midnight. Consult website and timetable Tempesta Autoservizi for more information.

We will probably take the train from the airport (quickest and easiest)

Train travel
Train  to Matera and from Matera to Altamura on the FAL Trains, departing from a separate station on the main Bari Central station
For the journey from Matera to Altamura we need to avoid trains in the above timetable where it is says No Bici (and obviously avoid buses)
For the journey from Trani to Bari is via Trenitalia and takes around 30 to 40 minutes and there are 2 to 4 trains per hour

Sunny (hopefully!)

Travel insurance
Mandatory.  Details will be collected later as well as next of kin information

Mapping apps

Ride with GPS has a range of maps including Open Cycle Map but with the free version the maps are online only.  

Locus Maps has a free version (although the Pro version which costs around £6 is slightly better) and you can choose 3 free downloadable maps from the Locus store.  NB  Locus Maps is only available for Androids not Iphones. 

Komoot: free version works with either phone types but if you have an android phone Locus map is probably better.

ViewRanger:  choice of online maps including Open Cycle Map.  Available for Android or iPhone.  Offline mapping only 5 quid a year BUT requires you to download lots of map tiles - so not ideal for a multi-day route.  Probably works well if you just use the online maps (eg if you have a contact with plenty of data).