Matera: the enchanting city of stones
Italian town of about 60,000 inhabitants built close to a large karst rift in the heart of Basilicata. It is known as the city of stones for the particularity of its historic center totally excavated along the walls of the deep gorge. Here bricklayers and master builders worked to build an infinite number of houses and churches, arranged one on top of the other in an apparently disordered tangle. This ancient urban core is so special that it has been declared a cultural landscape by UNESCO. So did you understand which city we are talking about? Just her. Matera. Matera is an almost magical city, which turns red at sunset and lights up with lights in the night like a perpetual nativity scene. And it is for this authenticity that Matera is one of the most loved film sets by national and international directors. An example? “The Passion” by Mel Gibson. Christ’s passion. Its authenticity and uniqueness can be recognized as soon as you arrive in the city. From its historic center, to its churches, tangled streets and ancient walls, Matera is a jewel for anyone willing to visit it and what better way to do it than by participating in a Matera Walking Tour. Here, with a local tourist guide, you will enter the heart of the city, its history, its traditions and its good food. Have you ever tasted Caciocavallo? Matera is all to be discovered, to go through and to find and will allow you to experience an unforgettable day.
What to see in Matera
As Carlo Levi said: “Anyone who sees Matera cannot fail to be struck by it as its painful beauty is expressive and touching”. The attractions to visit are many and among them we find:
– Matera Stones, the two symbolic districts of the city rich in rock buildings and architectures that can be visited by participating in a Matera Walking Tour.
– The Matera Cathedral, built in 1230 in the Gothic style and dedicated to the Madonna della Bruna;
– The rock churches, about 150 rock churches including crypts, sanctuaries and basilicas, scattered throughout the Matera area and declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site;
– The Crypt of the Original Sin of Matera, a masterpiece of rock painting art;
– The Palombaro Lungo di Matera, a dense network of underground cisterns;
– The Musma Museum, the museum of contemporary sculpture.
Matera Guided Tours
Matera is one of the oldest settlements in Italy where man has lived there since the Neolithic. Testimony of this are the buildings and churches, buildings and alleys that, carved into the rock represent the heart of Matera, also known as the Sassi di Matera. At the end of the 1980s, the stones of Matera were recognized as a site of pre-eminent national interest. There are two main districts: the Sasso Barisano, which most of all hides the underground heart of the city, and the Sasso Caveoso, arranged on a theatrical cavea with houses and caves that descend in steps. One of the tours available to visit these places in their entirety and as a whole is certainly the Matera Walking Tour. Mel Gibson said that after seeing Matera he lost his mind. Matera is history, culture, art, in a barren and sunburnt landscape but full of silence and spirituality.