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http://cakebysadiesmith.co.uk/celebration-cakes/40th-birthday-photo-cake/ Besides Su Nuraxi, there are still over 7,000 Nuraghes (beehive dwellings dating back to the 12th Century) intact on Sardinia

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Sardinia ~ A World Apart

Our Self Led Bike Tour of Sardinia is a cyclists dream.  From the beaches to the mountains through forests and hilltop villages, Sardinia is not just a beach paradise, but a perfect place to bike. This trip is steeped in history, famous archaeological sites and medieval hillside towns. A not to be missed tour!

Alghero ~Bosa ~Oristano
7 days / 6 nights self guided bike tour

 

Sardinia’s coastal flatland is perfect for more easy-going adventures whereas the island’s hilly interior demands a good portion of endurance and high levels of fitness.  Add to that the enchanting stretches of coast that are to be found throughout Sardinia, gorgeous beaches and inlets with dunes of white sand and you get a sense of  Sardina’s alluring charm. It is an island for adventurers and its rich and varied landscape is ripe for exploration.

Day 1: Introducing Alghero

 

We meet at the luxuryVilla Mosca for your tour introduction, professional bike fitting & orientation. Alghero is  one of Sardinia’s most beautiful medieval cities. Its Catalan legacy remains today, more than three centuries after the Iberians left, where a form of medieval Catalan is still spoken, and the golden Mura Catalane (Catalan Walls) are a highlight. In the evening take a walk along the wall and its towers and enjoy the animated holiday atmosphere, restaurants and bars.

Day 2: Romantic Bosa

 

Bike the beautiful uplands, with unforgettable landscapes.  Skirt the coastline to Bosa, a pretty and romantic town with an array of pastel hillside houses leading to the castello Malaspina. Panoramic views from the castle to  the waterfront where yellow and indigo traditional boats are moored. Be sure to taste the Malvasia wine, a regional speciality. Distance 43km / 26.5 Miles

Day 3:  Nuraghes and the Seven Fountains

 

Today you ride through a series of small villages en route to Santu Lussurgiu, a mountain village on the south-eastern side of the Montiferru mountains. It lies on the slope of an ancient volcanic hill, and its bright stone houses make a fine contrast with the green backdrop of woodland and meadows. A tour of its countryside will reward you with many fascinating remains of its Stone-Age and Nuraghic dwellers, with nuraghes, tombs of the giants and domus de janas. Santu Lussurgiu has a host of springs, the most famous being Siete Fuentes di San Leonardo, the seven fountains, which spew forth pure, perfectly drinkable water.  Distance 44 km/27.5 miles

Day 4: Beautiful Beaches

 

A downhill bike ride from Santu Lussurgiu, followed by flatland riding towards the seaside. On the way you can visit  Fordongianus where houses in the centre are built of pink and grey stone, revealing the wealth of trachyte quarries to be found in this area. One of the best preserved dwellings is the old “Casa Aragonese”, from the early 17th century, with portals and windows in Catalonian style.  A highlight of today is the Is Arutas beach, with its clear sea which colours are between green and blue. It is one of the best beaches in Oristano, Sardinia and owes its peculiarity to its sand, made up of small, round quartz grains, with colours that vary from pink to light-green to white. Arrive into the elegant town of Oristano in time for sightseeing. Distance 42 km /26 Miles More challenging options available.

Day 5: A World Apart

 

An amazing looped bike ride today, your bike trip is mostly along flat terrain. Explore the Sinis Peninsula and lagoon where pink flamingos, cormorant, marsh harrier, herring gull, sea partridge, heron abound. Then head Cabras and onward to Tharros, one of Sardinia’s most wonderful archaeological sites. Tharros was a major city, founded by the Phoenicians in the 8th century BC, taken over by Punics, then the Romans.  Much of what remains today dates to the 2nd and 3rd centuries AD, when the basalt streets, the aqueduct, thermal baths and other major monuments were built.  Bring your swim suit, you can take a break from wandering the ruins.  Stop at the Marina di Torre Grande for peppered mussels and enjoy the views. Distance 54 km / 65 miles

Day 6: Su Nuraxi ~ World Heritage Site

 

Today you bike from Oristani to Tuili, taking you to the archaeological site “Su Nuraxi” (Sardinian term for “The Nuraghe”) at the foot of the Parco della Giara, near Barumini. Nuraghes are megalithic, beehive-like buildings found in Sardinia. It is believed they were used as religious temples, meeting halls, or military strongholds. Carbon dated to 1478 BC, Su Nuraxi is located along the road that leads from Barumini to Tuili. It was declared World Heritage by UNESCO in 1997, and it is certainly the most important monument of the old civilization in Sardinia.  You end you day in the village of Tuili, a little centre of Sardinia, situated at the foot of the majestic plateau of the Marmilla Giara. Distance 56 km / 34 miles

Day 6: Departure

This morning after breakfast, you depart for Cagliari by train or private transfer.

La Bandita Townhouse

La Bandita Townhouse highlights one of Tuscany’s attractions that is often overlooked: the sweetness of village life.

Corso Il Rossellino, 111
Pienza (SI) 53026, Toscana, Italia
Tel +39 0578 749 005
Email: info@la-bandita.com              www.la-bandita.com/townhouse

La Bandita Townhouse is a 12-room luxury boutique hotel tucked inside the historic center of Pienza, a tiny Renaissance jewel of a village in southern Tuscany. The building is a rambling Renaissance-era palazzo where nuns have lived for over 500 years.

With its main door on the Corso Rossellino, a cobblestone lane, the property itself blends in completely with the Renaissance character of the rest of the village, its façade indistinguishable from the attached buildings. No exterior changes were made in the renovation, and a not a single square meter of space was added.

La Bandita is a comfortable, fun, and stylish place to relax, eat well and get caught up in the daily rhythms of everyday life here: the stillness of the main piazza in the morning, the old ladies making their daily shopping trail, and the evening hum of bustling trattorias.

The Townhouse Caffe is the small in house restaurant and wine bar with an open kitchen for guests to have direct interaction with the chef while he is working. There is an intimate covered outdoor seating area inside the walled medieval garden. The chef creates a focused daily set menu of Tuscan classics with the freshest seasonal local ingredients as well as a small list of well-crafted dishes meant to be shared.

Upgrade your tour accommodation or book La Bandita Townhouse as part of your Tuscany Tailor Made Bike tour today! Contact us at tours@cyclewest.com for more details.

 

Discover Wild Sardinia

Our Discover Wild Sardinia bike tour is a fascinating self bike tour on this beautiful island. Sardinia’s coastline is definitely one of  Europe’s most spectacular.

Oristano ~ Calasetta ~ Baia di Chia
Self Guided Tour 7 Days/ 6 Nights

Rugged mountains, pocked with caves, are home to large flocks of sheep that feed on local wild herbs and produce a cheese your palate will never forget!While a winding coastal ride, perfect for a cyclists , ths trip offers dramatic Mediterranean views and a powerful adrenaline rush. The real highlights are the prehistoric stone dwellings found in the Islands mountainous interior. The island is home to more than 7,000 stone Nuraghi towers, Bronze Age castles built between 1600 and 1100 B.C.

Day 1: Welcome to Oristano
Arrival, Meet & Greet Oristano, in the central-western part of the island of Sardinia.  After a professional bike fitting at your hotel, you are free to explore the beautiful narrow streets of the town. This tour can be tailored to suit you, with more relaxed and challenging bike trips available on a number of days.

Day 2: Tharros and the Sinis Peninsula
Starting from Oristano, heart of the Campidano plane you will ride in the terrific and suggestive Sinis Peninsula, where you encounter pink flamingos You’ll pass through Riola Sardo and then ride over the Cabras lagoon, before visiting the ruins of the Punic-Roman port city of “Tharros” with its breathtaking views. Distance 54 km / 33,5 miles all flat 

Day 3: Guspini & Spa
Today you cross the vast Campidano plane, passing by the village of Marceddi, surrounded by a beautiful sea. An uphill climb to Montevecchio, an old mine village, which is considered to be of great archaeological importance and is part of the Parco Geominerario Storico.

A more challenging bike ride takes you from Oristano, crossing the Campidano and taking a completely flat road until Sant’Antonio di Santadi for exactly 30 km! at this point you are warmed enough and can face the hills to Montevecchio, an old mine village. The mines of Montevecchio are an important site of industrial archaeology, part of the Parco Geominerario Storico. At the end of your ride enjoy a well earned downhill to Guspini.

Moderate option: Distance 59 km /36,6 miles or 73,5 km / 45,6 miles
Challenging option: Distance 73.5 km / 45.6 miles

Day 4: Nebida & Pan di Zucchero
Warm up with a short uphill to Arbus,  stoppingfor coffee, before enjoying a long downhill towards the ocean to Portixeddu and its long beach. Following from here to skirt the coastline enjoying stunning views of long sandy beaches and rugged promontories. Arrive at Nebida in front of Pan di Zucchero,  this is an outcropping rock 133 meters high with two natural arches. Distance 65 km / 40.5 miles

Day 5: Calasetta & San Pietro island
Today you bike around the coast before heading inland at Fontanamare. Off the beaten track roads lead you to the nearby  ancient nuraghes complex. Your final destination is the little fishing village of Calasetta on Sant’Antioco Island. Today you have the option of exploring the pretty San Pietro Island by ferry, where you can see pink flamingos and visit the lovely city of Carloforte with its Genoese Style. Distance 55 km / 34 miles 

Day 6: Wine Area & Baia di Chia
Start your last day of cycling on the Carignano wine road in the heart of Sulcis Area, then bike along craggy cliffs as  ancient fortified watchtowers alternate with little sandy coves and long stretches of beautiful beaches. Your destination today is Pula, which you will reach by the  Baia Chia. Distance: 47 km/29 miles or 102 km/63,3 miles 

Day 7: Pula & Nora beaches
This morning after breakfast enjoy Pula beaches and coves, Roman excavations and blindingly white sand dunes. Take an optional visit the beach of Nora and a large Roman amphitheatre that lies directly on the sea before your bus, taxi or private transfer available to Cagliari – Arrivederci!

Masseria Cervarolo

The Masseria Cervarolo complete with trulli is a fortified Puglian working farm, built in the 16th century, just 6 km from Ostuni village.

Ostuni, Puglia, Italy                                                                                      Tel. +39.0831.303729, Email: info@masseriacervarolo.it

The Masseria Cervarolo was once  a residence and a working farm and has been lovingly restored, respecting the original architecture and materials, the trulli, the courts, the walls, the altar, the fireplaces and floors. The surrounds ignite your senses: the sight of the white stone contrasting with the cobalt-blue sky; the scent of orange trees; the comforting sounds of nature; the taste of fresh, local cuisine. Come evening, personable owners, Teo and Patrizia, may join you for a craft beer or a glass of local wine before you settle down to superb fresh Puglian produce. What is not to love!!

Each of the 6 trulli, once a peasant’s workshop, is now a serene bedroom. Every one of the hotel’s  18 rooms have been furnished with restored furniture and have been embellished with traditional fabrics and handmade crafts.

Activities include wine and olive oil tastings, cookery classes, spa treatments and, of course, biking in the beautiful surrounding country side. Unwind with a yoga session, explore the historical region, hike or bike the much-conquered Puglian plains, or take a quiet moment in the Masseria’s baroque chapel.  The masseria is home to a small church, dedicated to Our Lady Of Sorrow Virgin Mary (1798), with a wonderful polychromatic baroque altar and several frescos.

The hotel has been awarded an EU Ecolabel for its environmentally sustainable practices, and power is supplied by solar panels. Food served on site is all locally grown or hand-made.

You will discover the superb landscapes of the Valle d’Itria while participating in our Cooking and Cycling in Puglia bike trip,  that leads you from Alberobello to Ostuni and Lecce. Enjoy!!

Please contact us at tours@cyclewest.com for more information.

Italy ~ Tailor Made For You

Create your very own tailor made bike tour in Italy that includes everything you want – and nothing you don’t. This is your vacation – where, when, and how you want it, to share with whomever you choose. Select any existing Italy itinerary and turn it into a private trip, or design your own adventure – we’ll apply our style and customize it to be everything you dreamed of, and more.

Our guides in Italy have an indepth local knowledge, enabling  us to develop a trips that offers the best il meglio! Our experience means we have a firm grasp of what is possible.  We take the worry out of your trip so that you can relax and enjoy the freedom of biking or the pleasure of walking the countryside!

Celebrating an anniversary or wish to Honeymoon in Italy? Or simply planning a small group getaway for family and friends? We look after all the logistics; van hire, luggage transfers, booking of special events, hotels & villa rental, restaurants, quiet roads.

Create your own tour!

Before proceeding you may want to go through our list of guided and self guided bike tours in all Tuscany, Elba island, Umbria, Sardinia island, Dolomites and southern Italy Puglia. Decide upon the region you want to spend time in. Fancy some walking as well as biking? Stay in a villa or a bed & breakfast, boutique hotel or spa?

Contact us today and get your private trip in Italy underway!

Enchanting Puglia

Our Enchanting Puglia Bike Tour is a luxury guided tour to a beautiful part of Italy. Puglia, the spur and heel of Italy’s boot, is an ideal cycling territory due to its mainly flat terrain.  It is also a food lover’s paradise, with a cuisine closely linked its local produce such as great olive oil and wine, sea food, chicory and  fava beans.

Foodie Adventure Highlights

* Unbeatable views of ancient olive groves, whitewashed villages and age-old
farmhouses
* Ride on quiet one-lane orchard roads, cooled by sea breezes, under big blue skies
* A sommelier-led tasting of full-bodied primitivo and other notable Pugliese vini
* The World Heritage sites of Alberobello with 1,500 trulli and overnight in
authentic Trullo

Alberobello  ~ Ostuni ~  Lecce
Luxury Guided  Tour,  7 Days/ 6 Nights, Euro 2900.00 per person sharing

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On this food and wine bike tour you will experience and learn how to cook regional specialties with a local chef including handmade Orecchiette pasta. With dishes enlivened with seafood, fruity green olive oil, fresh green vegetables and huge, bursting tomatoes, it is easy to see why Puglian cuisine is considered to be one of the most enviably healthy diets in Europe!

Here you will find wine produced from the Primitivo di Manduria, a distant cousin of California’s Zinfandel grape and Salice Salentino, a powerful red wine made primarily with Negro Amaro.
Discover the unique trulli dwellings in the Itria valley, roaming the rural countryside: whitewashed houses with conical stone roofs which blend into the well-tended orchards and vineyards of this vast and historic landscape.

Day 1: Welcome to Puglia!

Welcome to Puglia! We meet at Bari train station at 11.00 am and transfer to your villa. Mid-morning briefing and a custom fitting for your bikes. Take a short test ride and first cooking lesson of the tour. After the class, we will all enjoy a delicious dinner together paired with some of our favorite local wine.

Day 2: Alberobello

This morning we bike out to Cisternino, one of the most lovely and chic hilltop towns in Puglia, soaking in sweeping views of the beautiful Itria Valley. Enjoy the peaceful countryside while riding past olive groves and rock-scattered fields to the UNESCO world heritage site of Alberobello with its fascinating trulli – stone houses with conical roofed topped with pinnacles or spheres. A guide will introduce in the trullo world. Once you have explored enough ride back to trulli resort – only 14 km or transfer by van – Tonight dinner in Locorotondo – pizza
Distance 55 km/33 miles.

Day 3: Martina Franca & olive oil tasting

Your highlight today is Martina Franca and olive oil tasting at Frant’Olio.
We start from the resort using small, country roads. We pass the village of Noci and arrive at Martina Franca, a must-see town for its marvelously intact historic center, beautiful Baroque architecture, and stunning palazzo. Our first stop is to get a cappuccino from apasticceria in the town center!

Back in the saddle and reaching Cisternino, one of the most lovely and chic hilltop towns in Puglia, you will soak in sweeping views of the Itria Valley. Here you can see firsthand why this town is starting to gain some serious international repute.
Now is time to go to frantoio d’Amico where we have the olive oil tasting and lunch. Shuttle back to Resort or cycle in time to be ready for a memorable cooking class followed by dinner!
Distance 69km/43 miles.

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Day 4: Coastal Biking and Ostuni
Today we cycle by the ocean, the starting point for a perfect, easy, flat ride which heads north past ancient olive groves and along the Adriatic coast to the archaeological site of Egnazia, once the location of a Greco-Roman town dating as far back as the 4th century BC.
From your Trulli Resort you will reach Savelletri on the coast, then Torre a Canne also on the coast. You will be instantly charmed by the sky blue of the sea, that melts onto the white of the calcareous rock dotted here and there by the fichi d’india prickly pears. Finally, the last section of the day is an uphill ride to get to Ostuni village. Your lodging tonight is the Ostuni Palace. We dine at Taverna della Gelosia.
Distance 55 km/ 32 miles.

Day 6: Lecce and wine tour in Salento

We could not let you spend a week with us in Puglia without sampling one of its most sensational and up-and-coming products – wine!
Bike ride from Ostuni to Cellino San Marco where winery is. The cycling is easy: all flat, all secondary road pasing through San Vito dei Normanni and Mesagne.
Liveli is one of Puglia’s most renowned wineries in Salento area.
After a fascinating tour with the vineyard’s expert oenologist, we will be treated to a private lunch and wine tasting in a dining room overlooking the ageing barrels of wine.
After lunch transfer to our Masseria just out of Lecce, the pink city, the Florence of the Baroque, the gleaming gem of Apulia. Lecce: is known as the “Lady of the Baroque” unmistakable style that characterizes this city of art and architectural heritage is the value reported to the 17th and 18th centuries.
Tonight dinner is at Osteria degli Spiriti and your Lodging is the Masseria & spa hotel LuciaGiovanni
Distance 56 km/35 miles

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Day 7: Arrivederci al prossimo bike tour!

After a farewell breakfast all together at your villa we provide transfer to Bari airport/train station.

Discover the Flavours of Sardinia

Our Flavours of Sardinia Bike tour is a culinary adventure that combines cycling on the Mediterranean Island, exploring its historic sites and an unforgettable gourmet adventure. Come Join Us!

Bottarga ~ Culurgiones ~Malloreddus ~Cannonau
Guided Tour – 7 Days/ 6 Nights

Discover the best flavors of the Mediterranean island of Sardinia, through all stages of cooking, from the choice of ingredients through to preparation. In addition to cooking classes, reserved for you with the most renowned chef of the  island, we will take part in Sardinian olive oil, wine and cheese tasting. While cuisine is a focus of this trip, there are also historic and natural highlights to enjoy.  Work up an appetite  while cycling through fantastic scenery, such as the Montiferru or the plain of Arborea and explore the Punic-Roman ruins of Tharos and the famous archaeological site of Barumini, where there is the Nuragic town Su Nuraxi.

Day 1: Santu Lussurgiu & bue rosso
Meet at Oristano, before taking a  private transfer to Santu Lussurgiu for your bike fitting! Take an optional bike tour test or walk: the village is developed around the small rustic church of Santa Croce (built in 1158) with characteristic historic structures such as an amphitheater and steep narrow cobbled lanes making it an ideal spot for exploration! This evening, treat yourself to your first gourmet dinner of the tour – taste the local cheese and the fabulous ‘Stinco di Bue Rosso’

Day 2: Cuglieri & Malvasia
Today we will bike along country roads passing through small villages such as Magomadas and Cuglieri before reaching the famous Siete Fuentes water sources in San Leonardo, where we can relax in the woods. Soon we will arrive on the top of Montiferru, admiring the great plateau of Ghilarza while descending. Return to Santu Lussurgiu and prepare for your first cooking class. Our chef Riccardo Porceddu will introduce you to the preparation of ravioli Culurgiones and capocollo di suino . Distance: 64 km/40 miles.

Day 3: Oristano & Vernaccia
After breakfast you’ll have time to visit the village before we set of on our bikes: in the morning it is filled with scents of homemade sweets. First we’ll pedal downhill in the region of Montiferru, a dormant volcano, passing through small towns rich in medieval history history, admiring the Campidano plain and the sea of the Sinis peninsula from the top. Finally we will arrive in Oristano, a town of fishermen and horsemen. After a wander through the cobbled streets of the city, a short transfer will take us to Cabras village, famous for the production of bottarga (Sardinian caviar), where we’ll have wine tasting at “Cantine Contini”, and will try the delicious dry wine of the area: Vernaccia di Oristano. Distance: 54 km/ 33 miles.

Day 4: Tharros & Bottarga
Our day will start in a special way: we will go with the chef Pierluigi to choose fresh products directly in Oristano open market and we’ll go on a loop with him which will take us first to the inside of the land and then to the picturesque peninsula of “Sinis”, where there are plenty of ponds and lagoons: if yo are lucky, depending on the season, you will have the chance to see wonderful pink flamingos. We’ll pass through Cabras the tour continue on to Marina di Torre Grande to taste unforgetable peppered mussels for lunch Distance: 55 km / 34 miles

Day 5: Barumini & Malloreddus
After breakfast we’ll take a relaxed ride in the region of Monte Arci.  A highlight today will be a stop at Barumini in the Marmilla area, a Nuragic city which is home to the most important and well known archeological area of the island: the Bronze Age Su Nuraxi complex. Continue on to Siddi where the chef Roberto Petza will welcome us at his renowned cooking school at the restaurant “S’Apposentu di casa Puddu” (Michelin Guide starred). We’ll  have the chance to cook our own gourmet dinner with cook pasta such as saffron malloreddus, ravioli with lettuce or tallutzas! Distance 67 km / 41.5 miles, rolling hills. 

Day 6: Costa Verde & Sheep milk Cheese
Starting from Guspini we’ll cross the Campidano by cycling along a completely flat road until Sant’Antonio di Santadi. At this point we are warmed enough to face the hills of Costa Verde. Continue on until we reach the little fishing villages of Porto Palma, Tunaria and Portu Maga; here we will stop for a cheese tasting at Funtanazza farm, to try the pecorino cheese which is only produced from the black sheep of Arbus area. Afterwards we will take our last climb to Montevecchio, an old mining village. The mines of Montevecchio are now an important site of industrial archaeology and a part of the historic Parco Geominerario Distance: 70 km/43.5 miles

Day 7: Arrivederci al prossimo bike tour!
After a farewell breakfast all together we will  arrange  for your private transfer to Cagliari airport or town

Ever taken a Bike Trip in a Blue Zone?

A Blue Zone is one where inhabitants demonstrate extraordinary longevity. These include: Okinawa in Japan, Nicoya Peninsula in Costa Rica, Ikaria in Greece, Loma Linda in California and Sardinia, Italy.

Despite the vast geographical and cultural differences of these five places, similarities appear to include a diet of mainly local produce as well as an active daily lifestyle.

In 2015 we introduce our new Blue Zone Bike Trip: Cooking and Cycling in Sardinia. As part of this itinerary, we have a special edition of our ‘Cooking and Cycling in Sardinia‘  bike tour “Discovering Centenarians” from  June 28th to July 4th  2015. This tour will include a visit to visit the Barbagia “ the blue zone”.

The Sardinian lifestyle and pleasant climate plays a big part in the longevity of its people. Shepherds and farmers walk miles and miles and perform consistent physical work every day. Locals commute in towns by foot or bicycle to shop, to meet friends or just to get their daily exercise, even in the towns are situated in a hilly area. Sardinians enjoy the outdoors and what nature provides.

One of the principal foods of the Sardinians is known as Pecorino, 100% sheep milk cheese; thought to contain components that may prevent inflammatory diseases of aging such as heart disease and Alzheimer’s disease. Other traditional foods making up the Sardinian diet are whole grain breads, legumes, nuts and berries, with chicken, lamb, pork, wild boar, oily fish and shellfish for meat. The large variety of meats were not always available in the high mountainous regions, where meat was reserved for meals just once or twice a week.

Also, a glass or two of locally made wine is enjoyed at each meal. Some of the most famous Sardinian wines are Cannonau, Carignano del Sulcis and Malvasia. Sardinian wines have been found to contain at least three times the antioxidants of any other wines.

On this unique and exclusive Bike Tour, we bike through the rugged landscape and visit villages where the centenarians live, eat and tell their stories in the town squares join this bike trip!

Roll up your sleeves as part of this culinary bike tour and learn to prepare traditional recipes with Award Winning Chefs.  Enjoy the clear blue sea, sandy beaches and star filled skies of Sardinia!

Price: Euro 2,250 per person (price based on double room)

Luxury Guided Tour: 6 days, 3 Cooking Classes, Luxury Hotels Accommodation, Private Guide.

Contact us at: tours@cyclewest.com for a detailed itinerary and additional dates or please see our ‘Cycling and Cooking in Sardinia Bike Tour’. Read more >

 

il Melograno

Il Melograno, Puglia, overlooks the Adriatic Sea and lies on the green hills that are directed towards the Murgia. Here you will find trulli (cylindrical homes with cone roofs in Southern Italy) and caves, the hills and the sea, the olive groves and woods, traditions and flavours, smells and vibrant colours.

Monopoli, Puglia, Italy                                                                                 Tel: +39 080 6909030, Email: info@melograno.com

Located between the majestic olive trees of the Puglia countryside, halfway between the green hills and the blue of the Adriatic Sea, the 5 star hotel Il Melograno enjoys a location of rare and striking beauty.  Built in the sixteenth century as a commission of the Order of the Knights of Malta, the farmhouse, known as “La Torricella” (the little tower) due to its shape which is reminiscent of a fortified tower, has for centuries been at the heart of the district where it is located so much so that it has given it its name. A careful restoration, begun in 1986, has transformed the farmhouse into a 5-star hotel. The owner Camillo Guerra, a known antique dealer, personally oversaw the restoration, which has been faithful to the building’s original appearence.

Nestled in a square draped with bougainvillea, between the jasmine and wayfaring trees, the 31 rooms and 6 suites are beautifully decorated by the owner. Guests can relax at il Melograno’s private beach ‘Lido Tamerici’ 8 km from the farmhouse or remain at the hotel and enjoy the newly built and highly refined “Wellness Workshop” SPA which offers a wide selection of personalised treatments for the face and body. Two floodlit tennis courts, an outdoor swimming pool and jogging track satisfy guests who prefer outdoors physical activity.

In the hotel restaurant you can enjoy typical dishes of Mediterranean cuisine prepared with great skill to enhance the simplicity of the carefully selected ingredients. The flavor of fresh garden vegetables and its self-produced olive oil, give the dishes a genuinely authentic taste. Puglia, known in ancient times as Oenotria, thanks to a mild and temperate climate, produces well-known high quality wines in the inland areas, which are exported all over the world and can be tasted in the hotel cellar, along with a wide selection of Italian wines.

Il Melograno is one of the luxury hotels as part of  the Mediterranean flavors of Puglia bike tour.

Il Melograno can also be booked as part of a tailor made itinerary in Puglia.  Please contact us as tours@cycleswest.com for more information.

Palazzo Squarcialupi

Situated in the heart of the historical center of Castellina in Chianti, you will find the 15th century Palazzo Squarcialupi.

Castellina, Chianti , Sienna , Tuscany, Italy
Tel. + 39 0577 741186  Email: info@palazzosquarcialupi.com

In the past, the Palace was a noble residence with surrounding farmland and has recently been restored and reopened as a luxury hotel . Underneath the main building, in the ancient vaults are the antique wine-cellars where wine is produced to this day from the grapes grown in the vineyards surrounding the village. These ancient underground stone tunnels have also provided the idea location for Palazzo Squarcialupi’s spa.

The hotel, with 15 rooms, two Superior rooms and three elegant lounges, transports you into a medieval world, offering the maximum comfort for a pleasant and relaxing stay.  At the hotel bar, small enoteca and at the panoramic terrace, guests can taste the hotel’s own wines whilst admiring the magnificent scenery of the Chianti hillside. The hotel also has a swimming-pool in its spacious garden, and guests can enjoy pleasant walks through 170 hectars of woods and vineyards which surround the property.

Palazzo Squarcialupi can be booked as part of a tailor-made itinerary. Please contact us at tours@cyclewest.com for more information.