Matera overview

ITALY SERIES: Places not to miss in the South of Italy | #1: Matera

The South of Italy is full of surprises

A few months ago was about the third time I visited the South of Italy, but up until now I had never visited the famous city Matera. An UNESCO world heritage site, well known for it’s beautiful and iconic scenery.
Matera is most well known for the Sassi , an area in Matera where the houses are carved out of the mountains. It’s a unique site and because of this also used as a movie set more than once. One of the more famous (non-Italian) movies is the Passion of the Christ with Mel Gibson. When you see the city, and then especially the part with the Sassi, you understand why.

Matera overview

You can get lost and lost and lost again, just wandering through the little streets of Matera. With all the light white houses it is such a clear and bright city. When you have the overview of the whole city, it’s like a different world in front of you.

Matera view

It’s a combination of exploring the streets, of views through little alleyways and of open views over the mountain and the river. We hiked down a little bit towards the river, to enjoy the pathway and also get a little bit of cooling off!

Matera Nature

hike matera

Nature Matera

However I was more city then nature prepared (forgot any hiking shoes) so staying inside the vibrant city was the best option. Also, since we are still in the South of Italy, a nice glass of wine followed by an espresso before leaving is of course something I don’t say no to! It’s funny to see how when you get in the city, or focus on specific points when you look over the city, you see all kinds of scenes happening in the same moment. I loved looking at this little terrace where 2 persons are just enjoying their time together.

Close up matera

Due to it’s specific look and feel, Matera is a perfect background for movies or even commercials.. When we were walking around they were shooting a commercial with a local Italian actress, and of course there are still many references to the Passion of the Christ that was shot there.

Commercial matera

Passion Matera

It really feels like in a way you’ve been teleported through time when you walk through a place like this. There is so much history and it’s amazing how this gets preserved and we are now able to enjoy it and still link back to the time now and hopefully still 100 years from now.

Church matera

Matera is one of the cities in the South of Italy that, if you should ever visit, is definitely worth to go to! Ofcourse if you do go to visit the South of Italy, don’t forget the beautiful coastline.. dive in some clear blue water along the beaches of Giovinazzo or visit the special town of Alberobello.


The Dreamy Discoverer

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