Explore the fascinating and unique city of 'sassi'. Marvel at the labyrinth of caves, rock-hewn churches, underground tanks, noble palaces and much more that you'll have the chance to visit with your private guide.
"We relied heavily on the view that was there. In fact, the first time I saw her, I lost my head, because it was just perfect." So Mel Gibson talks about his choice for the set of the movie "The Passion of the Christ".
Matera was undoubtedly the ideal Jerusalem for the famous blockbuster. An invisible door of time seems to have preserved it over the centuries until it get to us as an incredible rock settlement, comparable only to the region of Cappadocia in Turkey. The whole housing system is perched on the slopes of the Gravina, a huge valley with extremely unique natural features, and is composed by houses and extraordinary cavernous mazes.
Caves, entrenched villages, farm houses engraved into stone, painted churches: you will be inevitably enchanted by this amazing city carved in the calcarenitic rock.
The landscape is perceived by the human eye as a superposition of stones, one above the other, as if to indicate the close link between the works of man and the land that houses and feeds him.
This “Subterranean City”, as it is called, has its focal point around the neighbourhoods Caveoso, Barisan and Civita, where you can admire narrow streets, ancient kilns, remnants of traditional rural life and a multitude of tanks and divers which represented an important system for the collection of rainwater.
Declared World Heritage by Unesco, Matera is worth a visit also for the XIII century Cathedral in Romanesque style, the XVI century stone crib made by Altobello Persio and the Baroque churches of San Francesco d’Assisi and Santa Clara. Furthermore, do not miss the Romanesque churches in the historic center of San Giovanni Battista and San Domenico.