Photo by: J Steedle
Location: Alberobello Puglia Italy

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PHOTOGRAPHY TOUR

Italy A Passion for Puglia

  • Limited to 12 participants to optimize your photographic experience with tour leader Kathy Adams Clark.
  • Enjoy photographing and tasting the local wine, cheese, and olive oil with local farmers and your Pulgia guide, as they teach you about the region and culture.
  • Explore and photograph on foot in the historic city center of Trani, Matera and Lecce. Amazing cities with their own unique architecture.
  • Photograph along the sea at Polignano, Ostuni, Otranto, and Gallipoli.
  • Trulli villages of Alberobello and Locortondo.
  • Photograph the mountain village of Castelmezzano with a mountainside backdrop.
Region

Europe

Destination

Italy

Dates

September 10-20, 2024

Duration

10 days

Available Post-Trip Extension

Rome

$6895

per person, double occupancy*

All spots are currently taken for this tour.

*U.S. dollars based upon minimum of 8 participants. There is a small group surcharge of $500 if 6-7 participants. We try to accommodate travelers who request single accommodations, as well as travelers who are looking for a roommate. If a single room is requested (subject to availability), or if we are unable to find a suitable roommate, there is a single room surcharge of $1045 LIMITED TO 5 SINGLES.

Tour Overview

The Strabo Photo Tour Collection is proud to announce a special tour to Puglia. Although it is a region in Italy, it is a different vision of Italy than you have seen before. You will notice the influences from the Greek Isles in architecture and your taste buds. It is certainly less traveled than the typical tour of Tuscany, Rome, or Venice. Yet still filled with the daily lives of people that grow olives, make wine and cheese, raising...

The Strabo Photo Tour Collection is proud to announce a special tour to Puglia. Although it is a region in Italy, it is a different vision of Italy than you have seen before. You will notice the influences from the Greek Isles in architecture and your taste buds. It is certainly less traveled than the typical tour of Tuscany, Rome, or Venice. Yet still filled with the daily lives of people that grow olives, make wine and cheese, raising their families in these busy hill towns of the ‘heel of the boot’.  The cities and villages have very narrow streets, and you’ll notice the architecture changing from one location to the next. Come explore from the ancient city of Matera to Lecce – referred to as the Florence of Puglia, and on to coastal port towns, and the famous Trulli in the interior.

Together you will explore the rich history, beauty, arts, and culture. You will photograph and walk among architecture influenced by the Greeks and Romans, with Byzantine and Baroque styles, Roman mosaics, and UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Explore hilltop villages, enjoy the cuisine, and last but not least taste the wine.

We always welcome tour companions who are not photographers. There are interesting aspects of Italian life waiting to be explored in every location. The trip’s leisurely pace will provide ample opportunity to wander through medieval hill towns, and feast on the renowned regional foods and wines. You will need to remain flexible to accommodate for unforeseen photographic opportunities, as events and weather changes, we want to remain adaptable to photograph unique opportunities. The accommodations that have been chosen combine simple, clean, and comfortable with good service at each location.

Focus and pace of the trip

Each of the areas we will visit has something unique to offer, and we will have time to explore them at leisure. The trip is suitable for virtually every level of photography or special interest. Anyone who is physically fit, and in good health should be able to participate in the entire program. The majority of time will be spent walking in hill towns. As in all our tours we walk at a photographer’s pace. Some of the sites will be uneven surfaces, or many steps to reach a particular vantage point. Please call us at 607-423-2525 if you have any specific questions on fitness or health.

Photo Leader

Kathy Adams Clark

Hi Jacque,

The Italy trip was delightful.  We got lots of great photo opportunities, met nice people and ate too much delicious food. As I’m sure you know, Kathy is a top-notch tour leader and terrific photographer. I used this tour as a trial outing for iPhone photography, limiting myself to use of only my iPhone camera.  I did bring along a “real” mirrorless camera but resisted the temptation to use it.  So now I have several thousand image files to get into and see if the iPhone camera held up as well as many photographers claim it does. Thanks for everything, it was great fun. Be Well, Richard & Rose

— Richard and Rose

Hi Kathy, I wanted to express my gratitude for the incredible photo tour of Italy you guided us on. Each day brought new wonders and photo opportunities that we will cherish forever. Your expertise in photography and your ability to introduce us to the art of capturing great pictures were invaluable. We learned so much from you and are excited to continue honing our skills.

Beyond the photography, the experiences you curated, from the delectable food to the rich culture, were unforgettable. Italy came alive in front of our lenses, and it was an absolute joy to explore with you. Thank you for sharing your passion and knowledge with us. We couldn’t have asked for a better guide. We hope our paths cross again someday. More gelato, please! Have a safe journey back home.

— Masuma

The workshop was wonderful, and hard and fulfilling and really fun! As usual, you were brilliant, prepared, encouraging, insightful and organized. Thanks again for your passion and for all the fun and knowledge you continually put in my life.

— Carol

I got the impression that Strabo Tours is an excellent organization. Congratulations on running things so well.

— S & J Dark

Tour Itinerary

September 10: Home

Depart home today on your overnight flight to Bari (BRI), Italy (flights may connect through Rome). (meals on plane)

September 11: Bari, Italy

We have found that the majority of participants like to have an additional evening to rest and get over jet lag. The Bari airport is less than 10 miles from the old city center and harbor of Bari; therefore we have included an overnight stay in the old town. Take a taxi to the hotel and depending on your energy level you can rest or walk on your own to get a feel for what is to come on your tour of Puglia. Suggestions to check out: the famous Basilica of St Nicholas, walk through the fascinating old quarter known as Bari Vecchia, where the local ladies still make pasta by hand sitting outside their houses. Bari castle is Norman and surrounded by a moat on three side, and original towers with a nice view of the old town. Lungomare Nazario Sauro promenade is a fantastic place to be at sunset. If you would like to opt out of this evening, please call Strabo Tours for credit information and the time you will need to arrive the next day. Overnight Bari Hotel

September 12-13: Matera

The tour bus collects you after breakfast at the hotel. You will need to be checked out and ready to travel with camera gear in hand. Your guide will welcome you to Italy and give you all the information about the tour en route to your first adventure – Trani. A historic fishing port on the Adriatic Coast. It’s a lovely introduction to Puglia, quieter than most you will be able to walk the promenade and photograph the yachts and fishing boats in the harbor.

On the way to the Basilicata region, you will stop at the picturesque town of Gravina to immortalize the breathtaking beauty of the town’s magnificent Roman bridge, an architectural marvel that whispers tales of history through its ancient stones. As a photographer, you’ll have the privilege of capturing not only the bridge’s structural elegance but also the enchanting interplay of light and shadow that dances across its weathered stones.

Continue through the countryside to the UNESCO site in Matera, Basilicata region (border to Puglia). Matera was elected the European capital of culture in 2019. Best known as the Sassi di Matera, an ancient city with houses and churches that have been excavated into the rocks and inhabited since the Stone Age. Continue with a photography walk this evening when the city begins to light up. Welcome dinner based on traditional local specialties and wine!

The next day take a day trip to the central part of the Basilicata region, Castelmezzano, a village located by a breath-taking wide valley. Located in the spectacular Dolomiti Lucane, mountains that draw a unique landscape through their rocky contour.  Return to Matera, this evening you will photograph at the belvedere, offering commanding views of the city at sunset. Mel Gibson chose to shoot the film “The Passion of the Christ” amidst this unique landscape. Overnight Matera (B, D; B) (meals listed each day B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=Dinner)

September 14-16: Lecce

On the way to Lecce city stop in Grottaglie for the ceramic district, visit and photograph with local artisans making hand-made ceramics. Then on to the lovely Apulian countryside, with wine tasting and light lunch. Then stop in the Apulian countryside, in the area of Negroamaro vineyardswith a visit local winery visit. After photographing the winery’s production area and the cellar with oak barrels, you will have a private lunch with wine pairing. Arrive to Lecce and enjoy a brief rest after checking in to the hotel. The superb beauty of its Baroque churches and elegant noble buildings, Lecce is called “the Florence of the Southern Italy”. Lecce is also famous for the cartapesta (papier-mâché art).

The next morning depart early, driving to the Adriatic Coast with photography of some of the beautiful natural bays Faraglioni and Grota della Poesia, where you’ll be charmed by a wonderful emerald, green lake set amidst rugged limestone cliffs. Then visit Otranto, full of interesting sights to visit while wandering through the town’s maze of narrow streets and passages. The beautiful Cathedral of Otranto holds one of the largest mosaics in Europe. Conclude your day with a captivating stop at Punta Palascia Lighthouse, Italy’s easternmost point, perched high upon a rugged cliff. At this location, you can capture the radiant beauty of the sun’s warm glow on the rugged cliffs along the Mediterranean. Late in the day you will drive along the Ionian Sea. Stop in Santa Cesarea Terme, a small fishing village famous for its natural thermal springs and stunning cliffs overlooking the sea. It’s a must-visit for photography enthusiasts due to its combination of natural wonders, architectural elegance, and captivating coastal scenery.

This morning you will have time to enjoy Lecce. It’s one of the few places, besides Bari to do a bit of shopping, as they have very interesting shops. Lecce is famous for the cartapesta (paper-mache art), you will see local shops and artists as they work. Alternatively there is much to photograph as it is one of the most beautiful cities in Puglia. Its city gates together with narrow sandstone streets are breathtaking, you will find something around every corner. Late this afternoon you will travel outside the city. Given time and weather you may stop in Galatina, then on to the stunning town of Gallipoli. Known for its historic charm, crystal- clear waters, and vibrant streets, Gallipoli is a treasure trove of photographic opportunities. As the sun dips below the horizon, you’ll conclude your day with a visit to this coastal gem, where the magic of a Gallipoli sunset will provide a memorable ending of this day trip.  Overnight Lecce (B, L; B; B, D)

September 17-19: Monopoli

After breakfast you will depart for Ostuni, best known as the “white city”. There will be a walking tour along the ancient walls and narrow streets, where some of the most picturesque spots are visible. Your guide will recommend some local restaurants for you to enjoy. Then stop in a local farmhouse where you will enjoy an olive oil tasting and can photograph an ancient oil mill underground and centuries old olive trees that are considered real “sculptures of nature”. Puglia has more than 60 million olive trees, and in this particular area close to the sea you can find some trees that are more than 1.000 years old!

Our trip continues driving to Monopoli. It is a typical Mediterranean town located on the Adriatic Sea and it was a thriving seaport, although its strategic position made it the object of regular attacks by pirates. Walking by the port, in the evening you can see fishermen with their fresh catch of the day. Check-in at the hotel and then enjoy Pizza & Birra in a famous pizzeria of the town.

After breakfast, explore and photograph more of the small village of Locorotondo. The old town layout follows a circular plan, with narrow and concentric arranged streets lined with whitewashed houses called cummerse.

Then visit and lunch in a local farm famous for the production of Apulian organic cheese. You can taste freshly hand-made excellent mozzarella, burrata and other Apulian cheeses! Mariangela, the owner of the farm, will cook a traditional family lunch and she will show you how to make fresh Mozzarella, hand-made of course!

In the afternoon enjoy Alberobello, the capital of the Trulli and a UNESCO Site. Trulli are ancient 13th century stone houses with a round shape, conical roof, and a pinnacle on the top. Enjoy a guided photography walk along the Trulli district and visit St Anthony’s Church, the unique trulli church. Waiting for the sunset, photograph up above the town away from the typical tourist district.

The next day your guide will take you to Polignano a Mare, a characteristic Mediterranean fishing village that stands on a rocky cliff. Enjoy photographic opportunities by the sea before reaching the village. Guided walking tour through the historical downtown where with the particular light of the sunset you can photograph houses and terraces directly overlooking the sea. Overnight Monopoli (B, D; B, L D; B, D)

September 20: Bari - Home

Given time there will be a group breakfast and an early morning group transfer to the Bari airport (time to be announced). (B)

Post-Trip Extension

Extension Name

Rome

Price

$2595*

Dates

September 20-24, 2024

Duration

4 days

* Based upon minimum of 5 participants. There is a small group surcharge of $300 if 3-4 participants. Single room surcharge is $895.


Those wishing to extend their stay in Italy will travel via train from Bari to Rome. Enjoy sunrise and sunset photography with Kathy at various locations for views of this ancient city. Explore the lesser-known quaint neighborhoods, away from the heavy traffic of the typical tourist routes. And of course you will tour the Vatican, Treve Fountain, and Spanish steps.

September 20: Bari-Rome

Given time there will be a group breakfast and an early morning group transfer to the Bari airport (time to be announced). Or you can join Kathy in Rome!!! (B)

September 21-23:

Meet your local guide Marcella 9AM in the hotel lobby. Enjoy a walking tour of the Trastevere neighborhood. Highlights include Fontana dell Acqua Paola, built in 1612 to mark the end of the aquaduct. Walk the quaint streets of Trastevere and photograph the people, architecture, and visit with unique craftsman of the region. After lunch stop at the Basilica Santa Maria on an ancient square at the center of Rione Trastevere. The basilica is considered the oldest in Rome, built in the same place where a fountain was at the time of Emperor Augustus. The fountain in the middle of the square is one of the oldest monumental fountains of Rome.

Return to the hotel late this afternoon for a break until your sunset shoot (weather permitting). The hotel will arrange taxi, taking you across the Tiber River to the Giardino degli Aranci, or the orange garden. Photograph the beautiful trees as you wait for the setting sun and the crowds to dispurse at the blue hour.There is a spectacular view of the city. Get acquainted with another part of Trastevere as you return to the hotel. You’ll cross the historic Ponte Sublicio bridge that spans the Tiber River. (Breakfast is assorted Pastry, L)

Enjoy the next morning with Marcella as you will be taken to a beautiful and special place, the Coppedè district or quarter. It’s a small happy place in the middle of a city that can be seen as a very large jungle at times. It owes its name to the architect who designed it,Gino Coppedè; it was built between 1913 and 1927 (with work interrupted during World War I). You’ll be able to slow down and photograph the unique architecture of the quarter.

Before returning to the hotel there will be additional time to photograph more famous locations such as the Spanish Steps and Trevi Fountain, or if you prefer Marcella can make additional suggestions. You will be back to the hotel around 3PM, which will give you some free time should you want to take in an optional museum visit. (L)

Your last full day Marcella will be with you for this morning, where you can enjoy as much of the Vatican as you wish, from the Sistine Chapel, St. Peter’s Basilica, and the Vatican Museum.

Enjoy another sunset shoot this evening. Depart with Kathy via Taxi to the Ponte Umberto, capturing St. Peter’s Basilica from the bridge. You will then continue with Kathy to the Castel and Ponte Sant’Angelo for additional photography and blue hour. Return to the hotel through Trastevere with Kathy (20-minute walk) as you spend your last evening in this beautiful city.

September 24: Rome - Home

Departure for home today. If your flight leaves later in the day the hotel can hold your bags until you return to the airport. The hotel can call you a taxi. Strabo will let you know if anyone is departing at a similar time.