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Basilicata

UNESCO sites

Our most recommended Basilicata UNESCO Sites

Matera: Guided Tour of Sassi di Matera

1. Matera: Guided Tour of Sassi di Matera

Embark on a day out in Sassi and explore the ancient neighbourhoods with a live guide. See a series of grottoes carved out of limestone and marvel at the Sasso Barisano and the Sasso Caveoso. Your tour will begin at the meeting point in Via Alessandro Volta. From here, your expert guide will lead you to the Church of San Francesco, situated in the historic centre of the city. Next, you’ll continue along a panoramic road comprised of narrow streets and winding alleys. After arriving at the Rupestre Church of Sant'Antonio Abate, you’ll find a pleasant surprise waiting inside: a classic example of the traditional culture of this remarkable city. Afterwards, you’ll move on to visit a typical Matera cave-house before continuing along Via Madonna delle Virtù and Porta Pistoia "Pert P’stèl" to conclude your cultural adventure.

Matera: Guided Walking Tour

2. Matera: Guided Walking Tour

You will meet a local tour guide in the main square, Piazza Vittorio Veneto, where you'll begin your walking tour admiring the landscape of the historic center from unique viewpoints. Then the tour will lead you through the historic center, covering topics of Matera history on the way. Matera is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and has been chosen as the 2019 European Capital of Culture, an important acknowledgment for its history and beauty which has been carved in stone.  Walking among the "Sassi" (the ancient neighborhoods of Sasso Barisano e Sasso Caveoso), you will discover the cave houses and churches carved in the rock, as well as the newly restored Cathedral. From the Cathedral which is built on a high point of the hill, you will enjoy enchanting views over the historic center and of Murgia Materana Park, an area characterized by hills and Mediterranean vegetation.  Over the course of 2 hours, you will be completely immersed in a magical unique land, seeing all of the major sights of Matera.

Matera: Sassi di Matera Guided Tour

3. Matera: Sassi di Matera Guided Tour

Meet your guide at Piazza Vittorio Veneto in Matera. From here, your expert guide will introduce you to the districts of Sassi. From the square, head to the heart of the historical center, where you will find the wonderful Apulian-Romanesque Church of San Giovanni Battista. Continue with a visit to Casa Cava, a hypogeum used in ancient times as a quarry, today turned into a convention center, thanks to outstanding restoration work. Stop at Sasso Barisano, to visit the rock church of Sant'Antonio Abate where you’ll find a pleasant surprise waiting inside, a classic example of the traditional culture of this remarkable city.  Move on to Sasso Caveoso to visit a typical Matera cave-house before continuing along Via Madonna delle Virtù and Porta Pistoia. Make a short stop at Piazza San Pietro Caveoso and stroll down one of the main streets of Sassi, Via Bruno Buozzi, to reach the second rock church of Madonna delle Grazie. Continue to the Baroque Church of Purgatorio. Next stop will be Piazza San Francesco d’ Assisi where you will visit the church dedicated to the Saint and from there you will move to Piazza del Sedile, Parliament's headquarters during the domination of the Kingdom of Naples. Finish your tour with a visit to the magnificent Apulian-Romanesque Cathedral, overlooking the highest part of the city.

Walking Tour of Matera at Sunset

4. Walking Tour of Matera at Sunset

Begin your journey at Matera’s main square, the Piazza Vittorio Veneto, where you will meet the tour guide who will take you on a walking tour of the city of the "Sassi", a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the European Capital of Culture 2019. From 6 PM explore Matera as the sun sets and the city’s lights flicker on, illuminating the human dwellings that have existed in the Sassi di Matera since the Paleolithic period. Explore the ancient districts of Sasso Barisano and Sasso Caveoso where houses and churches were dug into the rock. Take an optional guided visit of a cave-dwelling before heading to one of the highest points of the city, where you can visit a Rupestrian church and hear more about the history of Matera from your guide. The historic center of Matera also allows you to look out from the many balconies to view the Sassi and the Murgia National Park below.

Sassi di Matera Walking Tour

5. Sassi di Matera Walking Tour

This exciting tour begins at the Piazzetta Pascoli with a breathtaking view over the stunning Sassi di Matera and highland plateau of the Murgia. From here, you can see the Palazzo Lanfranchi, home to the Museum of Modern and Medieval Art of Basilicata, and the nearby Church of the Carmine. Continue the tour through the heart of the ancient dwellings of Sassi, considered a UNESCO World Heritage Site, partly built and partly carved out of the rock themselves and furnished as it used to be during the peasant civilization. Visit the church of Saint Lucy of the Malve and admire some striking frescoes and elaborate architecture before continuing the tour towards the ancient Gravina to the museum of farm history, with typical peasant dwellings, as well as artifacts and tools from the ancient peasant life. You'll also get to visit a typical cave house from around 1900, and pass the cave church of Saint Lucia delle Malve. Before the day's end, return to the center of town for a stroll around the town's Baroque area and admire some stunning churches of this style, including Saint Clare and Saint Francis of Assisi. End the fascinating tour at a look-out point over the Sasso Barisano in front of the beautiful Romanesque Cathedral.

Matera: Private Walking Tour

6. Matera: Private Walking Tour

Discover the story of a town which was carved into rocks and was inhabited until the 20th century. You will have the opportunity to visit a cave-house recently opened to the public, and will also have access to ancient rupestrian churches. Matera is a unique place, and makes for a great experience to experience. You will meet the local and expert tourist guide in the city center where the tour will start to discover this UNESCO site. From there, you will walk through the 2 main districts dug into the rocks, an area where you will discover cave-houses and rupestrian churches. During this tour, you can admire the panoramic view over the Murgia Materana Park from the balconies whilst you discover the Matera origins, one of the oldest European cities. Afterwards, you will reach one of the highest points of the Sassi where you will visit the cathedral.

Matera Cave Town & Sassi Guided Walking Tour

7. Matera Cave Town & Sassi Guided Walking Tour

Meet your top-rated tourist guide and the rest of the group in Piazzetta Pascoli where you can enjoy the breathtaking views of the Sassi di Matera. In this square you can also admire Palazzo Lanfranchi, which hosts the Museum of Modern and Medieval Art of Basilicata and the Church of Madonna del Carmine. Start your walking tour along the streets of the ancient city, navigating down stairways and alleys that will bring you to the heart of Sasso Caveoso. Throughout the tour, your knowledgeable tour guide will reveal the secrets of this extraordinary city, awarded the status of World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1993 and chosen by Passolini and Mel Gibson as a filming location for their movies. With games and stories along the way, this informative and interactive tour will captivate you and your children.  Visit the Church of San Pietro Caveoso, one of the most characteristic places in Matera, built in 1200 and modified in the 17th-century with the addition of a baroque bell tower. Enter the Rupestrian churches such as the Church of Santa Maria di Idris on the top of a big rock, or the Church of Santa Lucia alle Malve, part of an ancient monastery of Benedictine nuns built in the 8th-century. Here you can admire striking frescoes which are more than 1000 years old and perfectly preserved. After this, visit the Casa Grotta, a typical Matera house dug out of the rock, with a cellar and a stable where people lived side by side with animals like rabbits, chickens, and horses. Finish your tour in the baroque area of the city where you can admire the churches of Saint Francis of Assisi and Saint Clare. Enjoy the magnificent beauty of Sasso Barisano from the viewpoint in Piazza Vittorio Veneto in front of the wonderful Romanesque Cathedral.

Bari: Alberobello and Matera Day Tour

8. Bari: Alberobello and Matera Day Tour

Experience cities steeped in history with buildings that feel a part of the landscape itself on this day trip to 2 highlights of Italy, Alberobello and Matera. You'll see the famous Trulli buildings, historic churches, and more on this guided tour. After being picked up in Bari, be driven to the guide in Largo Matellotta to begin your sightseeing tour of Alberobello. Follow your guide into the historical center of Rione Monti, which boasts over 1,000 iconic Trulli buildings. Marvel at the unique architecture of these fascinating buildings while learning about their history and significance. Continue the tour with a visit to Rione Aia Piccola, an area that best represents the ancient medieval village. Take in the stunning view and snap some pics! The journey through Alberobello concludes at the highest point of the city, the site of the Church of Saint Anthony of Padua. Notice the similarities between the church and the Trulli buildings and soak up the historical atmosphere of the site as you listen to your guide’s anecdotes. The next stop is Matera. This part of the tour will begin at Via Alessandro Volta. From there, your expert guide will lead you to the glorious Church of San Francesco in the city’s historic center. Next, continue along a panoramic road of narrow streets and winding alleys to arrive at the Rupestre Church of Sant'Antonio Abate. Inside, you’ll find a classic example of the traditional culture of this remarkable city. You’ll then visit a typical Matera cave-house before continuing through the Via Madonna delle Virtù and Porta Pistoia areas to conclude your cultural adventure. It’s then time to reflect on the day's wondrous sights as you’re driven back to Bari.

Matera: 2-Hour Architecture and Landscape Private Tour

9. Matera: 2-Hour Architecture and Landscape Private Tour

Learn about the ancient architecture carved into caves on this guided tour. Your tour will begin at the meeting point in Via Alessandro Volta. From here, your expert guide will lead you to the Church of San Francesco, situated in the historic center of the city. Next, you’ll continue along a panoramic road composed of narrow streets and winding alleys. After arriving at the Rupestre Church of Sant'Antonio Abate, you’ll find a pleasant surprise waiting inside: a classic example of the traditional culture of this remarkable city. Afterward, you’ll move on to visit a typical Matera cave-house. Then you will continue along Via Madonna delle Virtù and Porta Pistoia "Pert P’stèl" to conclude your cultural adventure.

Andria: 3-Hour Bike Tour around Castel del Monte

10. Andria: 3-Hour Bike Tour around Castel del Monte

Feel like a local and explore Andria's top highlights, such as the Castel del Monte — a UNESCO World Heritage Site — and hidden spots on a 3-hour guided tour riding a bike or an e-bike. Ride in class and comfort on a bike, which is perfect for discovering various parts of the rural region.  See the Alta Murgia National Park differently and feel like a local as you cruise through its oak woods and expanses of pseudo steppe, uninterrupted by daily routines. You will look very Instagram worthy on your bikes. Visit many famous sights like the Castel del Monte octagonal castle, and discover typical local architecture marvels that are not on the front pages of tourist magazines.

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What people are saying about Basilicata

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 139 reviews

This was a fascinating tour. We loved our tour guide. He was so knowledgeable and spoke perfect English. I would highly recommend this tour for anyone interested in learning the history of Matera and the caves.

Beautiful experience especially thanks to the talented guide Antonia, who with her preparation, friendliness and a lot of passion, has been able to make this experience unforgettable

Very well prepared in all fields. From the history of the Sassi, to the traditions, to the curiosities, up to the art of the rock churches, a wonderful experience.

Very informative visit. The guide (Vito) very good, nice and engaging. To do absolutely

Fascinating unique town. So much to see. Very helpful and pleasant guide