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Matera

N 4040', E 1636.662'
2019-04-20
Our rating: 7.60
Overall rating:
Matera is far from the major tourist trails in Italy and therefore not as popular and famous as other places, despite its importance.

Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak

We made a big mistake by stopping here for only one night. The old city is simply huge and we did not have time to see even half of the interesting places.

Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak


Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak

There are almost no hotels with parking in the old city, the closest we found is Hotel San Domenico Al Piano (booking.com).

The old city is very unusual, both for Italy and, in general, for Europe. It looks more like the cities of the Middle East, compare, this is Matera

Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak

and this is Amman, the capital of Jordan

Amman, Jordan
Amman, Jordan Yuriy Buriak

The symbol of the city are the caves of sassi, which can be found throughout the old city. They became world famous in the 1950s, when it turned out that 15 thousand people still live in caves. The government forcibly resettled them in modern residential quarters and walled up the entrances to the caves. In 1993, Sassi became a UNESCO World Heritage Site, some can be visited.

Caves (sassi) in Matera
Caves (sassi) in Matera @

The caves were in Matera much earlier, on the other side of the canyon are visible much older ones, prehistoric dwellings of troglodytes. It is believed that these are the first human houses in the territory of modern Italy.

Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak

But Matera is unique not only because of the sassi. The city tightly intertwined different epochs, near the millennial caves stands the cathedral of 1268-1270, surrounded by medieval streets, and further there are modern residential quarters.

Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak


Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak


Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak


Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak

One of the most picturesque places of the city is the square with the church of San Pietro Caveoso (1218).

Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak


Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak

Above the square is the even more interesting rock church of Saint Mary of Idris.

Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak


Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak

In general, in the city there are more than a hundred churches.

Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak

As you already understood, the old city is car free.

Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak

We also crossed to the other side of the canyon, which offers the best view of the sassi. You can come here on foot, by crossing the canyon, by car (N 40 39.839 E 16 37.062) or by bus (Linea Speciale Cava del Sole. Parco delle Chiese Rupestri) from Piazza Giacomo Matteotti.

Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak


Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak

Here you can wander for hours, see millennial caves and the remains of ancient settlements.

Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak


Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak


Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak


Matera
Matera Yuriy Buriak


Matera map
Matera map @


Matera map
Matera map @

Matera is a filming location for more than a hundred movies, including blockbusters such as The Passion of Christ (2004)

The Passion of Christ (2004) in Matera
The Passion of Christ (2004) in Matera Newmarket Films


The Passion of Christ (2004) in Matera
The Passion of Christ (2004) in Matera Newmarket Films


The Passion of Christ (2004) in Matera
The Passion of Christ (2004) in Matera Newmarket Films

and Wonder Woman (2017).

Wonder Woman (2017) in Matera
Wonder Woman (2017) in Matera Warner Bros. Pictures


Wonder Woman (2017) in Matera
Wonder Woman (2017) in Matera Warner Bros. Pictures


Wonder Woman (2017) in Matera
Wonder Woman (2017) in Matera Warner Bros. Pictures


Wonder Woman (2017) in Matera
Wonder Woman (2017) in Matera Warner Bros. Pictures

But the main promotion of the city will be made by the not yet released blockbuster "No Time to Die" (2020). Judging by the trailer, the film has a cool chase scene in Matera.

James Bond in Matera
James Bond in Matera Universal Pictures


James Bond in Matera
James Bond in Matera Universal Pictures


James Bond in Matera
James Bond in Matera Universal Pictures

Getting there: Covered parking N 40 39.747 E 16 36.475. From Bari there is a train Ferrovie Appulo Lucane with the final stop in Matera (https://ferrovieappulolucane.it/en/). There is Flixbus from Bitonto, where there is a train station (https://global.flixbus.com/bus/matera). Also there are many buses from Bari and Naples.
Tags, Italy: antique city, city

Tags, all countries: antique city, city
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