Discover Puglia

From £1,299 per person // 12 days
Travel by rail down through Italy to discover the sun-kissed region of Puglia with its white-washed villages, olive groves and Mediterranean vistas. Your journey takes you via Freiburg in the Black Forest to Parma, Bari and Alberobello.

Discover Puglia

From £1,299 per person // 12 days
  • 12 Days
  • £ From £1,299
  • Italy
The Essentials
  • London to Italy via Freiburg and the Gotthard Route through central Switzerland.
  • The historic city of Parma
  • Regional capital Bari, stunning Alberobello and Baroque Lecce in Puglia
  • A night in Rome before your flight back to the UK
What's included
  • Standard class rail travel with seat reservations
  • 11 nights’ handpicked hotel accommodation with breakfast
  • Flight from Rome to London in Economy class
  • Clearly-presented wallets for your rail tickets, flight documentation and hotel vouchers
  • All credit card surcharges and prompt delivery of your travel documents to your home

Suggested Itinerary

Discover Puglia

Take a Eurostar across to Brussels this morning and connect with a German InterCity Express (ICE) train through to Frankfurt, Germany’s financial hub. Here, change onto another fast train through the south west of Germany to Freiburg im Breisgau on the edge of the Black Forest.

On arrival, it’s a short distance to the Novotel am Konzerthaus (or similar) where you have an overnight stay. Why not head into the old town area of Freiburg for a late dinner?

Today you take the civilised mid-morning train that runs direct from Freiburg to Milan. This enters Switzerland after around 40 minutes at Basel, and proceed through the Alps via the Gotthard Base Tunnel, that opened in 2016. The scenery both before and after the tunnel is spectacular as you pass lakes Lucerne and Lugano along the way.

Once you reach Milan, you have time for a coffee while you wait for your evening train to Parma, approximately 85 miles south of Milan and your home for the night. Check in at the NH Hotel Parma (or similar) for an overnight stay.

You have a morning to explore Parma, perhaps taking a visit to the 12th-century cathedral or the Teatro Regio Opera House in this delightful corner of Emilia-Romagna.

At lunchtime, board a Eurostar Italia Frecciabianca which takes you comfortably along the east coast of Italy and into Bari, Puglia’s capital, in time for dinner. Check into the Palace Hotel Bari (or similar) for a 2-night stay.

Your first stop in Puglia is in its maritime capital, Bari. Known as a strategic port for onward travel to Greece or Montenegro, Bari also has a charming medieval Old Town, known locally as Bari Vecchia which sits atop a peninsula between two harbours. Not to be missed here is the Basilica of Saint Nicholas with its gilded ceiling, floor mosaics and the tomb of Saint Nicholas (otherwise known as Santa Claus).

Elsewhere, the Romanesque cathedral and Swabian Castle (Castello Svevo) are also well worth a visit. The castle now hosts regular temporary exhibitions.

Enjoy another free morning in Bari and perhaps take a wander along the seafront promenade in the stately Murat Quarter. After an early lunch, return to the station and catch a regional train through the countryside of Puglia, sharing the scenic journey with locals as you change at the small town of Putignano. Here, a connecting bus will take you to Alberobello, the home of the famous Trulli houses.

On arrival, make your way to the Palazzo Scotto (or similar) , where you’ll be staying for the next 2 nights.

Alberobello is best-known for its trulli housing, a fascinating feature of this part of Puglia. A construction with conical roof put together without mortar. Alberobello is designated a UNESCO world heritage site – as its collection of over 1,500 trulli in an townscape environment is unique. Some of the trulli are now used as shops, restaurants, and accommodation, although many are still lived in by locals.

As you would expect, Alberobello is popular with tourists, but not overrun, thanks to its relative remoteness compared to the more touristy western Italian coastline.

Catch a Trenitalia bus this morning for a 20-minute ride to the small town of Martina Franca, where you are back on the rail network. From here, take a regional train through to Lecce, right at the southeastern tip of the ‘heel’ of Italy. On arrival here check in at the Risorgimento Hotel (or similar) for 3 nights.

Lecce is often known as the Florence of the South thanks to its impressive collection of Baroque architecture including a stunning cathedral with a five-floor belfry.

You have two full days in Lecce to explore at your own pace. The town has two main focal points, the Piazza Sant’Oronzo and Piazza del Duomo. The Piazza Sant’Oronzo boasts an interesting mix of modern and historic architectural styles, including the town’s Roman amphitheatre, half of which is still underground.

Lecce is also a great base for exploring the Salento Peninsula – the stunning coastal towns of Gallipoli (pictured) and Otranto are 90 minutes away by local railway and in 2½ hours you can reach Leuca, right on the ‘tip of the heel’.

Rather than take an irregular flight from Brindisi or Bari airports, today you take a comfortable and air-conditioned Eurostar Italia Frecciargento to the Italian capital, Rome. This journey takes 5 hours 30 minutes and passes through the central Appenine mountains in the spine of Italy. The train picks up the high-speed line near Naples before heading straight up to Rome.

Here, check in for an overnight stay at The Building Hotel (or similar) conveniently located near the main Termini station.

Today you make your way to either Fiumicino or Ciampino Airport, for your flight back to the UK. Rome is served by many different UK airports so let us know your most convenient and we will see what we can do!

TMR RECOMMENDS – Why not return to the UK by train? Take a high-speed train from Rome to Turin in northwest Italy and then cross the Alps to Paris and onwards to London the next day. Or, if you have longer to spare, travel back via the Italian Dolomites and the Brenner Pass – contact one of the team for details and a quote.

Typical hotels on this itinerary

Discover Puglia
Freiburg im Breisgau
Novotel am Konzerthaus

The Novotel Freiburg am Konzerthaus is situated next to the city’s major Concert Hall and offers easy access to the historic old town as well as the station, which is just 100 metres away. The hotel also boasts an indoor pool, a spa area, a restaurant and a bar where you can enjoy drinks and snacks in the evening.

NH Parma

Located within an architectural complex which also houses Parma’s main railway station, the NH Parma Hotel is also in easy reach of the city centre. The modern bedrooms are all sound-proofed with air-conditioning and free Wi-Fi internet access. Enjoy a drink in the bar or an Italian meal in the hotel’s stylish restaurant.

Palace Hotel

The Palace Hotel is situated in a central location, close to the seafront and the Castello Svevo. Bedrooms are furnished in a unique style with a combination of period furnishings and contemporary art works. There is also a rooftop restaurant with a garden overlooking the Old Town as well as a well-equipped gym.

Palazzo Scotto

The Palazzo Scotto occupies an historic building in the centre of Alberobello. The hotel boasts individually designed suites and also features a panoramic rooftop terrace with hot tub and sun loungers. Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the hotel.

Risorgimento Resort

Located in Lecce’s historic centre, the Risogimento Resort offers modern and comfortable air-conditioned bedrooms in an historic building. The hotel also boasts a rooftop restaurant with stunning views, a bar where you can relax with a drink and snack, and a tranquil spa area.

The Building

The Building Hotel is a modern property overlooking the Aurelian Walls, close to Rome Termini rail station. As well as comfortable, well-appointed bedrooms, there is also a restaurant, a spa with hot tub and sauna, a gym and a 24-hour reception desk.

From £1,299 Enquire Now
£ Pricing
From £1,299 per person

Low season (November-March) from £1,299pp

High season (April-October) from £1,399pp

These prices are based on two people sharing a twin or double room. Single supplements will apply for sole occupancy. It is based on Standard Class rail travel and includes seat reservations as necessary. It is based on the best fares on the trains. If you travel during a peak period, particularly at short notice, then supplements may apply.

Upgrade your travel

Upgrade all rail journeys on this holiday to First Class from £150 per person.

We can also upgrade individual elements of the journey.

Other holiday ideas you might like
Florence, Sorrento and Capri
From £1,149
9 Days
Take the train through the Alps to Florence, the stunning capital of Tuscany and then head south for some Italian sunshine on the Sorrentine Peninsula, including a day trip to the glamorous island of Capri.
From £1,149 per person // 9 days
St Petersburg and Helsinki
From £1,199
10 Days
Fly into St Petersburg, Russia's imperial capital and enjoy a 3 night stay before making your way back to London by rail and sea, via Finnish capital Helsinki, Danish capital Copenhagen and Cologne.
From £1,199 per person // 10 days
Verona Opera and the Orient-Express
From £3,099
4 Days
On this unforgettable holiday, combine a journey on the world-famous Venice Simplon-Orient-Express with a performance at the Arena di Verona's annual opera festival.
From £3,099 per person // 4 days
The Pilgrim Route to Santiago
From £1,199
9 Days
Travel by rail via Bordeaux and the Pyrenees to San Sebastian and then follow the famous route of pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostelo, with fascinating stops en route in Burgos and Leon.
From £1,199 per person // 9 days
Download Printable Itinerary
  • Download Printable Itinerary
Share this trip