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Matera: The history

Cathedral to the right and ravines on the left

«A beautiful city, picturesque and impressive.» describes it as follows Carlo Levi in his book "Christ Stopped at Eboli".

The story begins about Matera 10.000 years ago, the territory of the "National Park of the high Murgia” testifies settlements right from’Paleolithic era. The man in those days lived in caves, but with the passage of time has gone by and they began to build housing more comfortable, that soon would form the "Sassi”.

Under the Kingdom of Naples the city experienced a major economic and cultural development. During the Second World War Matera was the first city in the South to rise up against the Nazis, for this he was awarded the Silver Medal for Valor and named "City of Peace".

The magic of the Sassi has captivated artists, writers and film directors, accomplices in the process of rediscovery worldwide, after leaving in the fifties. Today the Sassi were recovered and returned live. Hotel, workshops, restaurants, auditoriums and homes, over 2000 people have returned to the popular Sassi, among them many Foreigners.

Matera was the first city in the South to earn the seal Heritage UNESCO in 1993, Also in October 2014 has received the prestigious investiture European Capital 2019.

The Sassi of Matera

Sassi houses at night

The Sassi of Matera are the most ancient city. Entirely excavated in rock calcarenitic, tuff, Sassi represent a urban ecosystem exceptional, capable of passing from the most distant prehistoric past ways of living in the caves up to modernity.

The Stones are two agglomerations of homes each one on the other. The roofs are the paths to the floor above with a succession of stairways, cavernous maze of chimneys and fireplaces that create a landscape of great effect.

A will, then, enchanting is the spectacle of lights that peep from streets and homes, to represent a starry firmament.

Fascinated by the beauty of this timeless land, artists, writers and film directors, were complicit in the process of rediscovery worldwide Sassi. Of Pier Paolo Pasolini a Mel Gibson, large international filmmakers have chosen the Stones as a natural set for their films, become an international success. In no time, and almost without retouching, the old quarters have been converted into Jerusalem years 30.

The Sasso Barisano and Caveoso

Ravines in night vision

The Stones are a Cultural Landscape timeless. The Sasso Barisano, oriented toward the northwest edge of the cliff, is the fulcrum the ancient city, is the richest and friezes carved portals that hide the underground heart.

The Caveoso, oriented South, has the shape of an ancient amphitheater Roman, with cave dwellings that descend in terraces. The center's Civita, rocky outcrop that separates the two Sassi, on top of which is the Cathedral, in Romanic Style Baroque inside and outside.

At Last, on the opposite side to Caveoso, we find’Plateau Murgia with numerous rock churches scattered along the slopes of the ravine

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