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REVIVING Puglia...Itinerary Crisis

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Mar 2nd, 2012, 07:42 AM
  #1
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REVIVING Puglia...Itinerary Crisis

AN EXPLANATION
Thinking about how I might word a topic title that would rally the Puglia fans,I remembered a Chinese ideogram for "crisis" ....a symbol both for challenge and opportunity.That is where we are at this moment.After purchasing our plane tickets,and beginning an exploratory dialog with EKS and other knowledgable Fodorites,a series of family responsibilities requiring all our time and attention cleared all other issues from our thoughts.Now,free to finally think about our trip,we are 7 weeks from departure,and without a plan,and I am in a panic.I must decide on our itinerary and make reservations,quickly We have 13 days,not including our day of departure.On arrival in Rome our plan was to pick up a rental car and drive to :
Ascoli Piceno for 2 nights,and then drive down the coast with stops in Trani ,Matera,Ostuni and Lecce,ending with an early A.M. flight from Brindisi to Rome and home to D.C.Please advise the number of days we should apportion for each stop,AND whether we should plan a night or 2 enroute to Trani.OR...Sulmona looks wonderful.Should we drop Ascoli and start in Sulmona and head for the coast from there???This is the opportunity part.We can change our itinerary.My husband is an aging road warrior;still game,but no longer interested in marathons.In the interest of time,I want to get this out to all of you. I will follow up with a list of hotel/massiera possibilities for your attention.PLEASE ...I treasure all your practical/creative ideas.I hope to make great progress,quickly.
TANTI GRAZIE,
Carolina
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Mar 2nd, 2012, 07:49 AM
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Hi Carolina,

Please be sure to come back with a trip report! We are heading to Puglia the last week of June so would love to hear about your trip.

I have put my itinerary up on Fodors and received lots of help - if you click my name you will find it easily!

Good luck!
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Mar 2nd, 2012, 09:54 AM
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Thanks,jamikins !! Your itinerary/assists are fantastic.I hope to make good use of many of the comments/suggestions.I admire your discipline in grounding yourselves in one agriturismo for the length of your stay!!Will post my itinerary as it develops.
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Mar 3rd, 2012, 09:40 AM
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Carolina: Can you write down the masserie/hotel possibilites? I responded to your other message just now..
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Mar 3rd, 2012, 09:47 AM
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Beginning to finalize our itinerary,and look forward to feedback feedback.After re-reading posts on Ascoli,we have decided that WILL be our first stop from Rome !!
ASCOLI PICENO: Albergo Piceno -2- nights
LAMA de LUNA in Montegrosso -3- nights.....Made this choice so we could have Saturday dinner at Antiche Sapori and Sunday lunch at Massiera Barbera...I have emailed an inquiry about availability of rooms there,as well.While at Lama de Luna,we will spend a day in Trani..
MATERA:Albergo S.Martino -2- nights,AND 2 iffy days:...a Monday and Tuesday !!! Tuesday,1 May,is MayDay!! I hope this will keep things lively,rather than shuttered.Any thoughts ??Has anyone been to Matera on a Monday??
OSTUNI:-4- nights.Where to stay:
IL FRANTOIO
LA RASCINA
MASSIERA MONTELAURO
MASSIERA S. MARTINO in Pezze de Greco Feed-back here,please!!!!!!
We don't mind driving to dinner,but it is also nice to have places near-by
LECCE: Palazzo Persone or.....????-3- nights
Once I have secured our hotel/massieras I will work on our daily itineraries.I look forward to comments on this itinerary,and any adjustments you care to suggest.
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Mar 3rd, 2012, 09:48 AM
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Whoops...Sorry about the "feed-back" doubles.
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Mar 3rd, 2012, 11:42 AM
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One thing jumps out at me at first reading: Masseria Montelauro is near Otranto, not near Ostuni. So cross that one off your list for the Ostuni area.

You do have time to spend a night or two there, however, just be aware of the location in the Salento south of Lecce.


I am wondering about the 3 nights at Lama di Luna and if you would be better off taking one night away from there. Personally I would not plan on an entire day in Trani. You could spend the morning there and drive to Castel del Monte after lunch, thereby seeing the highlights of the immediate area easily within a 2-night stay at Lama di Luna. Maybe others will have a different opinion. If you take time away from Trani, you could add a night, or even 2, to the far southern Salento area.. But then, there are towns along the coast near Trani that I did not visit, and there is also the town of Minervino Murge, that I also had to miss due to time constraints. (See Franco's report for further details on this area' look at #3 about Bitonto and daytrips from there)


http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...-revisited.cfm





I'm not sure about the closings in Matera and the May 1 issue. But Sonia at Locanda San Martino speaks fluent English and should respond to your e-mail queries.


This has the making of a fabulous trip. I think that you have ample time to add another destination here..Salento; agriturismo in Basilicata perhaps for the evening of May 1 so that you can enjoy an extensive feast? (We will have to write to a couple of places and find out if a meal is planned).

Can you say more about your own travel style?

Should we begin writing out the itinerary, with the dates so we can see about May 1 and where it falls within the entire trip?
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Mar 3rd, 2012, 07:38 PM
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Thanks so much,EKS!! I am already beginning to re-consider our itinerary.I had been thinking of May,1 as a day of closings and a possible dead spot,but obviously it might present a unique opportunity.SO..other than arriving in Ascoli on 4/25 for 2 or 3 nights,and ending in Lecce or Ostuni so we can easily get to Brindisi for a n early AM flight,5/9 I am wide open to other approaches....13 full days not including arrival and departure.

In regard to our travel style:we travel to experience and enjoy other European cultures and peoples.We like to stay in lovely small hotels or B&B's which provide a taste of the local "custom of the country as well as helpful,creative padrones...if we are lucky.We usually choose an area to focus on,do lots of reading and research and then plan our days to incorporate what we have distilled.We walk,drive back roads,sit in cafes,shop local specialties for picnic lunches,visit museums and historic sights and soak up beauty spots.We love food markets,and always travel with a corkscrew,but no stop-watch.This feels like a great adventure
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Mar 7th, 2012, 11:48 AM
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AT LAST....AN ITINERARY I think will be wonderful.I had to factor in Sunday and May Day,and I think /hope this will work well.
25 April for 3 nights:ASCOLI PIENZA ALBERGO PICENO
28-9 April TRANI ALBERGO LUCY....with Sunday lunch reservation at Masseria Barbera.I could not get a Saturday reservation at Antico Sapori,...full up....and so decided staying in Trani would be fun.
April 30-May 1 Matera....May day in Matera could be very interesting.Hotel pending.Guide Nadia contacted.
May 2-5 La Rascina in Ostuni.Looks lovely
May 6-8 Lecci PALAZZO PERSONE.
NOW.....to begin filling in the days/evenings.I welcome your comments and suggestions
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Mar 13th, 2012, 10:01 PM
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4 carolina-- did nadia in matera ever get back to you? she didn't get back to us-- and finally found that our internet service is blocking her internet service-- so had to use an address at hotmail instead of comcast. after figuring that out-- she got back to us within a day. this happened also with one of the hotels we were trying to contact. which makes me wonder--- have tried to get a reservation at masseria barbera and they haven't answered-- even with new address. how did you get through to them?? which address did you use??
am firming up plans-- and will post soon. getting excited.
kawh
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Mar 15th, 2012, 03:19 PM
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I telephoned Nadia after receiving No response to 2 emails.She told me she had received my emails and had entered the requested day and time on her calendar.While she was very pleasant on the phone,she never explained her email silence.Also,since I was unsure about which hotel to book,I asked her for suggestions,which she promised to supply immediately.I sent her an email,telling her how much we were looking forward to our meeting AND her suggestions.Three days later,and still no response.I suggest you call her.I got a reservation at Massiera
by calling,as well.They were extremely pleasant,and we are delighted.I suggest you do the same;instant gratification !! I will post our detailed itinerary in a day or so,and am delighted to share any information I have collected.
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Mar 15th, 2012, 06:23 PM
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4carolina- thanks much for the info. yes,good idea, we will call masseria b. for a reservation. just have to go out and get a long-distance phone card!
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Mar 16th, 2012, 02:14 AM
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Hi all,
nice plan, but remember: roads and "logistics" in South Italy could be a nightmare.
So, don't arrange "speed transfer" between cities and restaurants

Vito
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Mar 16th, 2012, 01:46 PM
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Thanks Vito!! I have been hoping you would join the discussion,and wonder if you have any favorite osteria /trattoria in/around the places we will be? I have read your comments in the past,and value your suggestions.Are you familiar with the area around Ascoli Pienza? I will post a 'fuller" itinerary later today.
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