Puglia Guided Walking Holiday

Uncover the rural charm and rich culinary heritage of Puglia, in the heel of Italy's 'boot'


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Activity types:

  • Central location
  • Hills & moorland


  • 2
  • 3
More information

Choosing the level of your walks

Our easy grading system shows whether a region offer gentle strolls or more challenging routes to help you choose the right holiday for you. Difficulty is measured on many factors such as distance, ascent/descent, terrain, weather and more. There's no magic formula, but from our experience we grade our walks 1 to 5 (where 1 is easy and 5 hard). Our challenger holidays require a high level of fitness and stamina.

More about difficulty levels

From £949.00 - 7 to 14 nights


Prices are per person

Room 1:
Room 2:
Room 3:

Holiday overview

2019 Puglia Guest Booklet

Visit the region of Altamura, Puglia which is relatively undiscovered and located in the 'heel' of Italy. It has been home to multiple empires and cultures who have all left their architectural mark. The terrain is pre-historic with caves, sink holes and narrow ravines.  Alta Murgia National Park is rich in many varieties of bird and flora. The gentle rolling countryside offers view across the plains to snow capped mountains of del Polino. This area was once seen as the bridge to the East and resulted in a diverse mix of cultures, arts and history. This area boasts three UNESCO World Heritage Sites, one of them being the town of Alberobello, famous for its unusual Trulli houses.

Holiday Highlights:

  • Discover an area of Italy that is still relatively undiscovered and fringed by mountains and turquoise seas
  • Walk through the rolling landscapes of the Alta Murgia National Park, dotted with ancient towns steeped in history
  • Uncover rural charm and rich culinary heritage by its quaint trattorias and great food
  • Visit the Sassi at Matera, UNESCO listed cave dwellings lived in until the 1960s
  • Socialise in the evenings when the town comes alive, Italian-style

Price includes:

  • A full programme of guided walks with two options every walking day
  • All transport to and from walks
  • The services of experienced HF Holidays' leaders
  • "With flight" holidays include return flights from the UK and hotel transfers
  • 7 nights' accommodation in en-suite rooms
  • Half Board – continental breakfast and evening meal 

In pictures...


Hotel San Nicola in Altamura, Italy

The 4-star Hotel San Nicola dates back to 1741, it has been beautifully restored and is located in the centre of the picturesque old town of Altamura. 

This charming town is on the doorstep with easy access to its shops, picturesque streets and attractions. Sample some of the breads and its well known Focaccia de Altamura (topped with tomatoes and herbs).


Your room

There are 27 modern en-suite bedrooms.

All bedrooms are equipped with a:

  • Phone
  • Air conditioning
  • Flat screen
  • TV
  • Minibar
  • Complimentary toiletries
  • Hairdryer
Hotel San Nicola bedroom


Hotel San Nicola hall The hotel has a:
  • 24-hour reception,
  • Room service,
  • Laundry,
  • Ironing and dry cleaning service (extra charge)


Holidays at Altamura are Half Board with continental breakfast and evening meals at two of Altamura's restaurants.

Continental buffet breakfast: this is served from 7am in the courtyard dining room. This will include cereals, fruit juices, yoghurt, fresh fruit, cheeses/meats, selection of breads and croissants, jams, tea and coffee.

Lunch (payable locally)
Packed lunches can be bought from the local shops a few minutes from the hotel and can also be purchased from the hotel.
Evening meal
One of the highlights of this holiday is that our guests dine out in Altamura at a local restaurant that serve local dishes and specialities. A 3-course dinner will be served at the Tre Archi Restaurant every evening except on Saturdays and Wednesdays when we will be dining at the newly refurbished restaurant at Hotel San Nicola. 

This restaurant is within easy walking distance of our hotel and guests can experience the "passiagata", an Italian tradition where the locals with their families and friends walk out in the evening socialising, and take in this unique atmosphere.


Altamura Dining Room

Your Evenings

The friendly atmosphere of our holidays continues into the evening.

Most of our socialising at Altamura is over a relaxed meal, opportunity to talk about your day with your fellow guests and sample some local wines and dishes. See the town came alive in the evening with all the local families walking out, treating their children to ice creams and just sitting over a coffee.


  • Our experienced leaders offer the choice of two different walks each day
  • Choose the option which best suits your interests and fitness
  • We provide flexible holidays. Choose easier walking one day and harder the next or just explore independently or relax around the resort
  • Our leaders are friendly and welcoming, making your holiday fun and sociable

HF Holidays walks grade 2 easy


Easier Walks: 5 to 7 miles (8-11km) on a mixture of good paths and tracks. Up to 1,200ft (360m) of ascent in a day.

HF Holidays walks level 3 medium


Harder Walks: 6 to 11 miles (9.5-17.5km) on a mixture of paths and tracks with some rocky sections. Up to 1,400ft (420m) of ascent in a day.

Day 1: Arrival day

For those arriving on the group flight into Bari, the onward journey to Altamura is by coach. You should arrive at the hotel with time to settle into your room, and perhaps explore the town. On the first evening your leaders will explain more about the walks and there will be plenty of time to meet your fellow guests.

Day 2: Altamura and the Pulo

Option 1: Altamura and the Pulo

See beautiful olive trees in Altamura, Puglia, with HF Holidays

Distance: 7 miles (11km)

Ascent: 500 feet (150m)

The walk in a nutshell: We'll start close to the Pulo, and after exploring the northern rim of the depression we'll visit a cave dwelling. We then descend out of the Alta Murgia National Park across limestone and through fields of grain, almond and olive groves towards Altamura.

Don't miss: The area is a haven for wildlife and flowers - how many species will we spot?

Option 2: Altamura and the Pulo Extended

Walk in the Pulo di Altamura, Italy, with HF Holidays

Distance: 10 miles (15km)

Ascent: 300 feet (90m), with 700 feet (210m) of descent

The walk in a nutshell: This walk starts a little further north of the Pulo. We'll take a longer walk amidst typical Murgia scenery towards the Pulo, visiting the depression and the caves. We return to our hotel by the same route as the other party.

Don't miss: The Pulo is one of the largest dolines, a depression common in limestone areas, in Italy. 

Day 3: Sightseeing day - Matera and the Sassi

Visit the Sassi in Matera, Italy, with HF Holidays Visit the World Heritage Site of Matera, Italy, with HF Holidays Visit the San Nicola dei Greci church in Matera, Italy with HF Holidays

Both groups will travel to the World Heritage Site of Matera, about 18km from our hotel. We start from the Jazzo Gattini Visitor Centre outside the town and walk through the limestone scenery on the north of the deep Matera Gorge. We visit a number of ancient rock churches and other antiquities and enjoy spectacular views across the gorge to the city. Both groups will then go to the south side of the gorge, where there is an opportunity to visit more troglodyte houses and churches in Matera. Alternatively, you could sit and have a drink in one of the many bars in this popular destination. Matera has been selected as European City of Culture for 2019. The whole group will follow the same route accompanied by an experienced and knowledgeable local guide. Approx 5 miles (8km).

Day 4:  Alta Murgia and Castel del Monte

Option 1: Castel del Monte

Visit the Castel del Monte, Puglia, with HF Holidays

Distance: 5 miles (8km)

Ascent: 500 feet (150m)

The walk in a nutshell: We start east of the castle and wander on good tracks through olive groves and past many whitewashed trulli houses. We'll then ascend to the castle with plenty of time to take in refreshments and speculate on the many oddities of its construction. 

Don't miss: The Castel del Monte - a World Heritage Site that was completed in 1250.

Option 2: Alta Murgia and Castel del Monte

Walk in the Alta Murgia National Park, Puglia, with HF Holidays

Distance: 9 miles (14½km)

Ascent: 600 feet (180m)

The walk in a nutshell: This option starts near the small hamlet of San Magno, south-east of the castle. We take a longer route, on good tracks, to reach the World Heritage Site. Our route crosses through the heart of the National Park before joining the other party's route.

Don't miss: Our route to the castle takes us through beautiful scenery - enhanced in the spring by wonderful wildflowers.

Day 5:  Free day

Each week there is a free day when no guided walks are offered.  This is an ideal opportunity to relax around the hotel, walk independently or visit local places of interest.

Day 6: Gravina in Puglia

Option 1: Gravina in Puglia

Visit Gravina, Puglia, with HF Holidays

Distance: 6 miles (9½km)

Ascent: 800 feet (250m)

The walk in a nutshell: From the centre of Gravina we make our way across an ancient aqueduct to the far side of the ravine. We ascend Botromagno Hill, home to a number of archaeological sites. We return to explore the town and visit the Sotteranea archaeological complex. 

Don't miss: We'll use an English-speaking guide to tour the Sotteranea - a fascinating underground complex.

Option 2: Serra Pendino & Botromagno

Walk in the spectacular countryside around Gravina, Puglia, with HF Holidays

Distance: 8 miles (13km)

Ascent: 1,400 feet (420m)

The walk in a nutshell: This walk starts to the south of Gravina and follows tracks and quiet lanes traversing the flanks of the Serra Pendino. We then ascend to the summit plateau of Botromagno with time to explore the archaeology. We then trace the same route as the others into Gravina and the Sotteranea tour. 

Don't miss: The summit of Botromagno Hill features the remains of an Iron Age fort.

Day 7: Mercadante Forest

Option 1: Jazzo and Masseria

Watch out for Green Woodpeckers in the Mercadante Forest, Puglia, with HF Holidays

Distance: 6 miles (9½km)

Ascent: 400 feet (120m)

The walk in a nutshell: Our route starts from a taverna in the forest and takes us through the northern edge of the woodland and out into open heathland. We continue to a deserted jazzo - a traditional sheepfold - before we head back into the woods and back to the taverna.

Don't miss: This 'artificial' forest is home to many species of birds - will we see or hear woodpeckers?

Option 2: Mercadante Forest Exploration

Walk in the Mercadante Forest, Puglia, with HF Holidays

Distance: 9 miles (14½km)

Ascent: 400 feet (120m)

The walk in a nutshell: We follow the same route as the other party to the deserted jazzo. From here we continue onto open land south of the forest before heading back into the forest on good paths to join the others for well-earned refreshments.

Don't miss: We find a peaceful and sun-dappled spot perfect for a picnic lunch.

 Day 8: Departure day

Please note that the itinerary outlined is provisional and could be subject to change. A finalised itinerary will be available at the resort and your leader will brief you every evening about following day's walks.


Make the most of your European holiday by visiting two resorts. Why not visit our popular resort of Sorrento?

Altamura & Sorrento - 14nts

Hotel pool at SorrentoCombine a week at Altamura with a week at Sorrento. It's easy to see why this resort is a firm favourite with our guests. Enjoy world-class sightseeing at Pompeii and Herculaneum, and stunning coastal walks lined with lemon groves. Our friendly family-run hotel has wonderful views over the Bay of Naples.

A direct transfer between Hotel San Nicola and Hotel Caravel is included in the price.

To book any of our Two-Centre holidays call our Reservations Team on 0345 470 7558


Fredericus Festival

Altamura Festival

Altamura celebrates the Fredericus Festival in from 28th April until 1st May; celebrating the visit of Frederick II who stayed in the region on the way back from the sixth Crusade in 1232.  The medieval festival includes processions, flag wavers, jugglers and street performers during these three days of frivolity.

Local area

Explore the narrow streets of this historic town and you will find the interesting Romanesque-Gothic cathedral which has the most intricately carved portal in Puglia, and 14th/15th century miniature sculptures. The alleyways or “claustri”, distinctive to Altamura usually end in small courtyards. This area has prehistoric sites where you can see dinosaurs’ footprints and “Man of Alamura”, a Paleolithic skeleton.

We loved the location of this holiday, it felt like we were seeing the real Italy, not many tourists in Altamura so no exceptions made. The town was celebrating a religious festival, the main square where we stayed was particularly beautifully decorated with special light features - a bit like Christmas! We ate, drank and shopped the same as the locals and people were very welcoming. The area was full of little churches you could pop into and one afternoon we heard singing and went in to listen to a group of nuns singing – it was very memorable. The sightseeing days were exceptional and the trulli really were special. The places we ate were full of local diners and delicious puglian cuisine. We went on to spend a week in Sorrento which provided a great contrast and chance to experience the variety of Italy. (Caryl and Chris, Oxon)

Shops and facilities: Altamura is famous for its bread, made since the time when the town supplied ancient Rome. There is a famous bakery where they make the Pane di Dlamura and Focaccia de Altamura (topped with tomatoes and herbs). Other local specialities include cheeses, fried artichokes, braised chicory, fava beans and fresh ravioli and an array of homemade sweets.

There are many other interesting small shops and cafés.


We recognise that everyone’s travel arrangements are unique, so all our holidays to Europe can be booked ‘with flight’ or ‘without flight’, giving you more flexibility and choice.


Travel by plane


‘With flight’ holidays – the hassle free option

Book your holiday ‘with flight’ from Gatwick to Bari airport. For flight times and prices please see the Dates & Prices tab.

If you choose this option we automatically include return transfers between the airport and the hotel. The coach transfer takes approx 1 hour to the Hotel San Nicola.

Our hotel is based within the historic walled old town of Altamura, as buses are unable to access this area you will be dropped off just outside in the Plazza Unita and enter the town on foot via the archway, Porta Bari. Here you will get your first glimpse of this fascinating town on the short walk to the hotel San Nicola.




Driving to us

‘Without flight’ holidays – the flexible travel option

Alternatively, tailor your journey to suit you by booking your holiday ‘without flight’ allowing you the freedom to book your own flights from your local airport.

If you choose this option, transfers are not included in the price. However, below are some suggestions to help you reach your destination:

  • We can book you a seat on the HF Holidays’ transfer coach from Bari airport. This is timed to meet the HF Holidays’ flights* (provisional flight times can be found on the dates and prices tab or you can call us on 020 8732 1220 for more information). Cost per single journey is £20.
  • Why not let us book you a private taxi transfer at a cost of £90 per single taxi journey?

Transfers must be pre-booked.  Please call 020 8732 1220 for more details

* Please note that HF Holidays is not responsible for your onward travel if you fail to meet the transfer coach


Read more reviews from feefo

Dates & Prices

Date Description Nights Brochure price Book
7 Sep 2019 PULCL - Puglia & Sorrento Guided Walking - Without Flights 14 £2,249.00 Book Now
7 Sep 2019 PULCL - Puglia Guided Walking - Without Flights 7 £949.00 Book Now
14 Sep 2019 PULCL - Puglia Guided Walking - Without Flights 7 £949.00 Book Now
14 Sep 2019 PULCL - Puglia & Sorrento Guided Walking - Without Flights 14 £2,249.00 Book Now
14 Sep 2019 PULCL - Puglia Guided Walking
(Travel included - Departs from: London Gatwick)

Flight - Outbound


  • Depart: 14 Sep 2019, 8:20 a.m.
  • Arrive: 14 Sep 2019, 12:10 p.m.
  • Depart from: London Gatwick
  • Arrive at: Bari Palese Maccie

Flight - Return


  • Depart: 21 Sep 2019, 1 p.m.
  • Arrive: 21 Sep 2019, 3 p.m.
  • Depart from: Bari Palese Maccie
  • Arrive at: London Gatwick
7 £1,149.00 Book Now
28 Sep 2019 PULCL - Puglia & Sorrento Guided Walking - Without Flights 14 £2,249.00 Book Now
28 Sep 2019 PULCL - Puglia Guided Walking
(Travel included - Departs from: London Gatwick)

Flight - Outbound


  • Depart: 28 Sep 2019, 8:20 a.m.
  • Arrive: 28 Sep 2019, 12:10 p.m.
  • Depart from: London Gatwick
  • Arrive at: Bari Palese Maccie

Flight - Return


  • Depart: 5 Oct 2019, 1 p.m.
  • Arrive: 5 Oct 2019, 3 p.m.
  • Depart from: Bari Palese Maccie
  • Arrive at: London Gatwick
7 £1,149.00 Book Now
28 Sep 2019 PULCL - Puglia Guided Walking - Without Flights 7 £949.00 Book Now
5 Oct 2019 PULCL - Puglia Guided Walking - Without Flights 7 £949.00 Book Now
5 Oct 2019 PULCL - Puglia & Sorrento Guided Walking - Without Flights 14 £2,249.00 Book Now

Prices are per person


  • Double room for sole occupancy: £9 per night
  • All transport to walks is included in the price of the holiday
  • Non-member associate fee: £10 per person

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