Matera Province

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Basilicata Information
Location of Basilicata
Area: 9,995 km²
Population: 600,000
Density: 59/km²
Capital: Potenza

Find a hotel in Basilicata
Provinces
Comunes
  • Matera
    • Accettura
      Aliano
      Bernalda
      Calciano
      Cirigliano
      Colobraro
      Craco
      Ferrandina
      Garaguso
      Gorgoglione
      Grassano
      Grottole
      Irsina
      Matera
      Miglionico
      Montalbano Jonico
      Montescaglioso
      Nova Siri
      Oliveto Lucano
      Pisticci
      Policoro
      Pomarico
      Rotondella
      Salandra
      San Giorgio Lucano
      San Mauro Forte
      Scanzano Jonico
      Stigliano
      Tricarico
      Tursi
      Valsinni

  • Potenza
    • Abriola
      Acerenza
      Albano di Lucania
      Anzi
      Armento
      Atella
      Avigliano
      Balvano
      Banzi
      Baragiano
      Barile
      Bella
      Brienza
      Brindisi Montagna
      Calvello
      Calvera
      Campomaggiore
      Cancellara
      Carbone
      Castelgrande
      Castelluccio Inferiore
      Castelluccio Superiore
      Castelmezzano
      Castelsaraceno
      Castronuovo di Sant'Andrea
      Cersosimo
      Chiaromonte
      Corleto Perticara
      Episcopia
      Fardella
      Filiano
      Forenza
      Francavilla in Sinni
      Gallicchio
      Genzano di Lucania
      Ginestra
      Grumento Nova
      Guardia Perticara
      Lagonegro
      Latronico
      Laurenzana
      Lauria
      Lavello
      Maratea
      Marsico Nuovo
      Marsicovetere
      Maschito
      Melfi
      Missanello
      Moliterno
      Montemilone
      Montemurro
      Muro Lucano
      Nemoli
      Noepoli
      Oppido Lucano
      Palazzo San Gervasio
      Paterno
      Pescopagano
      Picerno
      Pietragalla
      Pietrapertosa
      Pignola
      Potenza
      Rapolla
      Rapone
      Rionero in Vulture
      Ripacandida
      Rivello
      Roccanova
      Rotonda
      Ruoti
      Ruvo del Monte
      San Chirico Nuovo
      San Chirico Raparo
      San Costantino Albanese
      San Fele
      San Martino d'Agri
      San Paolo Albanese
      San Severino Lucano
      Sant'Angelo Le Fratte
      Sant'Arcangelo
      Sarconi
      Sasso di Castalda
      Satriano di Lucania
      Savoia di Lucania
      Senise
      Spinoso
      Teana
      Terranova di Pollino
      Tito
      Tolve
      Tramutola
      Trecchina
      Trivigno
      Vaglio Basilicata
      Venosa
      Vietri di Potenza
      Viggianello
      Viggiano

Basilicata Flag
Basilicata Airports
None
Basilicata National Parks
The Pollino National Park
National Park Val D’Agri Lagonegrese
The Gallipoli Cognato Park
Matera Province, Basilicata
Typical countyside of the province looking towards the town of Matera - Photo: www.understandingitaly.com
Matera is the smaller of the two provinces, 3,447 sq.km, which make up the region of Basilicata. It takes up the south eastern sector and has a stretch of coastline running along the Ionian Sea on the 'instep' of Italy.

Province of Matera, Basilicata

The nearest International airport serving the region is Bari Karol Wojtyla Airport - Bari, Italy (BRI / LIBD) which is 64km from the town of Matera. Website

For the Ionian coastal resorts the Aeroporto del Salento at Brindisi is slightly more convenient. Website

There is also a large port at Bari with ferries to the cities of Durres, Igoumenitsa, Corfu, Kotor and Dubrovnik. There are also seasonal summer services running to Cephalonia and Patras. Website

The train station at Bari is connected to all major Italian destinations. From here you need to change to the Ferrovie Appulo Lucane train line which covers the main towns in the province of Matera. The train journey between Bari and Matera takes around one and a half hours.

By road, the A14 motorway runs from Bologna (Emilia Romagna) in the north down to Taranto (Puglia) in the south and cross country, the A16 motorway runs from Naples (Campania) in the west to Canosa (Puglia) where you can connect to the A14.

The province of Matera is mountainous to the east and in the centre, gradually turning into rugged hills before flattening out as it reaches the Ionian coast.


Town of Matera - Photo: www.understandingitaly.com

Matera
The capital city of the province is also called Matera and is famous for its perfectly preserved Sassi caves. There are many other ancient towns, hilltop villages and places of historical interest to visit in this province.


Aliano - Photo: www.understandingitaly.com

Aliano
This was the fictional town of Gagliano which Carlo Levi wrote about in his famous book 'Christ stopped at Eboli'. It rests on top of a deforested, rocky hill with sandy soil leaving it vulnerable to landslides, which, along with a major earthquake in 1980, made many parts of the town uninhabitable. These events, along with lack of employment, have led many people to leave the area in search of a more prosperous life. European funding is making it possible to renovate the historic centre and Aliano is a warm, pretty town packed full of history and is a lovely place to spend a few hours.

Bernalda
This is a larger and more prosperous town with an 11th century castle which was enlarged by the Aragonese during the 15th century.


Bernalda Castle - Photo: Fiore S. Barbato
    There are three notable churches:

  • The Mother Church, built in the 1530's but has recently been refurbished.
  • Church of Our Lady of Mount Carmel with its large, 17th century wooden crucifix.
  • Convent Church.

The Palazzo Margherita with its beautiful gardens was originally owned by Giuseppe Margherita but is now owned by the film director Francis Ford Coppola and has been transformed into a small but luxurious hotel.

In this small town there are four other palaces, Palazzo Appio, Palazzo Fischetti Lacava, Palazzo Guida and Palazzo Lacava. Bernalda is close to Metaponto where the ruins of the ancient Greek city of Metapontum can be found.


Craco - Photo: Idéfix

Craco
This is a typical hill town of Basilicata but is unusual due to the fact that it is a ghost town. A series of natural disasters including landslides, flooding and earthquakes left the town uninhabitable but much of it remains intact and it has become a popular backdrop for films and TV series.


Irsina - Photo: Fiore S. Barbato

Irsina
A pretty medieval town, Irsina rests on top of hill around 550m above sea level giving it a good, all round view of the beautiful surrounding countryside. It is right on the border between Basilicata and Puglia and has old gates leading into the old town which is a maze of narrow alleys banked by elegant historical buildings. There is a cathedral (Cattedrale di Santa Maria Assunta) with a Baroque façade and a Gothic bell tower. Away from the historical centre the new town has colourful buildings with interesting shops and a number of cafes and bars.


Irsina Cathedral - Photo: Rocco Stasi

Tricarico
Almost in the middle of the province of Matera, Tricarico is one of the best preserved medieval towns in the region of Basilicata. It has a 27m high Norman tower, a cathedral, towers of Ràbata and Saracena, a Sanctuary (Madonna di Fonti) and a Ducal Palace which contains an archaeological museum.

The stretch of Ionian coast in the Matera province of Basilicata stretches from Metaponto to Nova Siri over a distance of 35km. The beaches are flat and a mixture of fine golden sand and pebbles. The sparsely populated towns along the coast become packed with tourists during the summer months.

Porto degli Argonauti
This is a luxury eco-resort and yacht harbour, ideally placed for sailing to other Italian destinations and further afield to popular destinations such as Greece, Montenegro and Croatia. Website

The part of Matera running along the Puglian border produces excellent wine and olive oil. Around Irsina there are vast fields of grain grown for the production of pasta.

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Basilicata Information
Location of Basilicata
Area: 9,995 km²
Population: 600,000
Density: 59/km²
Capital: Potenza

Find a hotel in Basilicata
Provinces
Comunes
  • Matera
    • Accettura
      Aliano
      Bernalda
      Calciano
      Cirigliano
      Colobraro
      Craco
      Ferrandina
      Garaguso
      Gorgoglione
      Grassano
      Grottole
      Irsina
      Matera
      Miglionico
      Montalbano Jonico
      Montescaglioso
      Nova Siri
      Oliveto Lucano
      Pisticci
      Policoro
      Pomarico
      Rotondella
      Salandra
      San Giorgio Lucano
      San Mauro Forte
      Scanzano Jonico
      Stigliano
      Tricarico
      Tursi
      Valsinni

  • Potenza
    • Abriola
      Acerenza
      Albano di Lucania
      Anzi
      Armento
      Atella
      Avigliano
      Balvano
      Banzi
      Baragiano
      Barile
      Bella
      Brienza
      Brindisi Montagna
      Calvello
      Calvera
      Campomaggiore
      Cancellara
      Carbone
      Castelgrande
      Castelluccio Inferiore
      Castelluccio Superiore
      Castelmezzano
      Castelsaraceno
      Castronuovo di Sant'Andrea
      Cersosimo
      Chiaromonte
      Corleto Perticara
      Episcopia
      Fardella
      Filiano
      Forenza
      Francavilla in Sinni
      Gallicchio
      Genzano di Lucania
      Ginestra
      Grumento Nova
      Guardia Perticara
      Lagonegro
      Latronico
      Laurenzana
      Lauria
      Lavello
      Maratea
      Marsico Nuovo
      Marsicovetere
      Maschito
      Melfi
      Missanello
      Moliterno
      Montemilone
      Montemurro
      Muro Lucano
      Nemoli
      Noepoli
      Oppido Lucano
      Palazzo San Gervasio
      Paterno
      Pescopagano
      Picerno
      Pietragalla
      Pietrapertosa
      Pignola
      Potenza
      Rapolla
      Rapone
      Rionero in Vulture
      Ripacandida
      Rivello
      Roccanova
      Rotonda
      Ruoti
      Ruvo del Monte
      San Chirico Nuovo
      San Chirico Raparo
      San Costantino Albanese
      San Fele
      San Martino d'Agri
      San Paolo Albanese
      San Severino Lucano
      Sant'Angelo Le Fratte
      Sant'Arcangelo
      Sarconi
      Sasso di Castalda
      Satriano di Lucania
      Savoia di Lucania
      Senise
      Spinoso
      Teana
      Terranova di Pollino
      Tito
      Tolve
      Tramutola
      Trecchina
      Trivigno
      Vaglio Basilicata
      Venosa
      Vietri di Potenza
      Viggianello
      Viggiano

Basilicata Flag
Basilicata Airports
None
Basilicata National Parks
The Pollino National Park
National Park Val D’Agri Lagonegrese
The Gallipoli Cognato Park
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