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BASILICATA:MATERA, POLLINO NATIONAL PARK AND MARATEA

A 8 day group walking holiday

 


This lovely tour starts in Matera, a UNESCO site famous for its ancient town, the "Sassi of Matera. Leaving from Matera 'Sassi' with its rock caves and stone we head to the Pollino Park. This national park is the biggest in Italy, spreading over more than 200.000 hectares in areas of absolute wilderness and cultural landscapes in Southern Italy. Founded to preserve the last individuals worldwide of “Loricato” Pine (Bosnian Pine-Pinus Leucodermis) resistant to freezing cold, snow and hard wind, the park is still its last refuge against the human destruction, where the so-called civilization didn’t protect the Earth most endangered and precious natural environments. Unlike other holiday destinations where tourism dominates, this park is the ideal location for a break, whether you’re looking for a brisk walk on the highest tops of South Italy, where the view extends to two seas (Ionian and Tyrrhenian Sea) and until Sicily, a demanding trekking, a daredevil ride in canyons down the mountains or just a relaxing break in a natural unspoilt scenery. The last days we are in Maratea, called the 'pearl of the Tyrrhenian' because of its beautiful scenery and coastline.

 

 

 

Programme

 

Day 1 Individual arrival at Matera

Matera, one of the oldest inhabited cities in the world, is built in a small canyon. The town is on the World Heritage list of UNESCO because of its Sassi, habitations dug into the rock itself. Today there are many restaurants, pubs and hotels. In the afternoon we have a guided tour through the Sassi with its small alleys, squares, cave dwellings and rock churches. In the evening we will have dinner in a typical 'Sassi' restaurant. 

Walking time: 3 hrs; distance 4 km / 2,5 miles; difficulty: easy  

 

Day 2

The Park of the Rupestrian churches

Today we make a walk on the Murgia plateau in search of the rupestrian churches. We walk along walking trails with beautiful views of the surroundings. We have lunch in one of the caves. In the afternoon free time to visit Matera.

Walking time: 4-5 hrs; distance 9 km / 5,6 miles; difficulty: easy to medium

 

Day 3

The Pollino National Park 

On our way to the Pollino National Park we make a walk the Calanchi near Tursi. Then we arrive at our hotel in Viggianello, where we make a light short walk around the village. Viggianello is situated in a beautiful position in the Valley Valle del Mercuri at the feet of Mount Pollino. The village is famous for it eno-gastronomic traditions. The dishes have exciting names like i “Rasckatìeddi” (pasta), i “Kavatìeddi” (gnocchi), “frascàtula” (polenta), la “Minestra ‘mbastata” (soup with vegetables and potatoes), “Rafajùoli” (ravioli), “Brasciòla” (porc meat) Overnight stay and dinner.

 

Day 4

Serra di Crispo

Today a nice walk in the “heart” of the Pollino Park. The trail through the forest follows the  abandoned “Rueping.”, a nineteenth century railway line used for the transportation of tree trunks. We pass alongside a tiny lake called "Lago Fondo" and further climbing you will reach Pietra Castello (1750 m.) where you will meet the first Loricato (Bosnian) Pines. We continue with our uphill walk till Grande Porta del Pollino (the big gate) at 1958 m. and to the Serra di Crispo summit (mt. 2056) known as the “Garden of the Gods”. A deserved downhill walk will bring us back our hotel, dinner and overnight stay.

Flora: Bosnian pine, turkey oak, chestnut trees, beach trees, aromatic herbs, blackberry bushes, hollies, wild pear, mushrooms, musk, peonies, orchids, wild violets, thistles, brooms, gentians, hawthorns, mistletoe and red lilies

Fauna:roe deer, golden eagle, Apennine wolf, raven, eagle owl, peregrine, black woodpecker and the Orsomarso  

Walking time 6 ½ hrs; distance 12 km; differences in altitude 678m

 

Day 5

 

I Patriarchi del Pollino

Today we will reach the peak of Monte Pollino, the second highest summit in the National Park. We cross a beech tree forest with a spectacular views of the rocky shore with the characteristic Bosnian Pines. Maybe we are lucky today and will have a glimpse of an Eagle or the Pilgrim Hawke. Back to the Hotel, dinner and overnight stay.

Walking time 6 ½ hrs; distance 14 km; differences in altitude 771m

 

Day 6

The Tyrrhenian coast: Maratea

Transfer to Maratea and get settled in at your Hotel. We make an excursion to the San Biagio Mount and the Redeemer statue, with a breathtaking panorama of the cliffs and coves along the coast. We descend on foot into the countryside along a paved path to visit the historic centre. Free time to enjoy the beautiful centre of Maratea. Overnight stay at Maratea.

Walking Time: 3 hours

 

Day 7

La Spiaggia Nera (The Black beach)

After breakfast we start an easy excursion passing through the alleyways of the old centre. We will walk on the west side of the San Biagio Mountain and will have a nice panorama with the contrasting landscape of green fields and woods and the blue of the sea. We are always accompanied by a nice view from the Policastro gulf to the Cirella Island in Calabria. The route follows an old path linking different little churches and chapels among which the famous Madonna della Pietà. Your final destinations of today’s route are the Maratea Caves and the famous “Spiaggia Nera” (the Black Beach) where the volcanic black sand fades into the dark blue of the sea. Overnight stay at Maratea 

Walking time: 3 hours

 

Day 8

Departure after breakfast

 

 

 

 

 

 

Included in this walking tour:

  • 7 overnight stays in a double/twin room with breakfast 

  • 6 dinners

  • maps 

  • a guide during the tour

  • transfer from and to airport of Bari

  • information material

 

Not included:

  • lunches, 1 dinner and drinks during dinner  

  • entrance fees   

  • everything else which does not come under the heading “ included services”  

  

Dates

03/06; 04/09; 22/10

Level 2/3

Walking in a hilly landscape.  Walking experience is needed and a good physical condition. Walks of 4-6 hours per day /12-20 km (with an average of  3/4 km an hour)

Participants

tour parts with min 6 persons

Prices p.p. 2017

6 till 14 participants

In a double/twin room     € 980,00 
In single room     € 1.135,00 

15 till 24 participants

In a double/twin room     € 670,00 
In single room     € 825,00