Is Matera, Italy, Value Visiting? • Flying With A Child


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Matera in Italy is a stupendous metropolis with a historical past that dates again 1000’s of years. As one of many world’s oldest repeatedly inhabited settlements, Matera, with its UNESCO World Heritage Web site cave dwellings, hanging church buildings, and cobblestone streets, is a improbable vacation spot for households who take pleasure in studying in regards to the previous in a metropolis far completely different from their very own. If you’re visiting Italy with children and have time to discover Matera, even when for a day – it’s so price it!

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I had the pleasure of taking my family on a visit to Matera- it’s positively price a go to. We stayed within the Ai Tetrazzini Residence—only a quick stroll from the town’s most important sights—and it really felt like we have been sleeping in one of many caves that the town is legendary for. 

Matera’s distinctive and cultural sights—together with its filming places for James Bond: No Time to Die—make the town an exquisite vacation vacation spot for households seeking one thing completely different. 

So whether or not you’re planning a visit to Matera, or would love extra info on whether or not it’s the best getaway for you, carry on studying as I delve into all the knowledge on the perfect time to go to, how you can get there, and the town’s prime sights. 

A street doorway in Matera, Italy

Finest Time to Go to Matera, Italy

The very best time to go to Matera is throughout spring and autumn. Nevertheless, summer season and winter even have their perks. Here’s a breakdown of every of the 4 seasons: 

  • Spring (March to Could): Throughout spring, the climate in Matera is delicate and nice, making it a superb time for households with little ones in tow. With temperatures starting from 15°C to twenty°C, you possibly can comfortably stroll across the metropolis and benefit from the flowers and inexperienced areas which can be at their most vibrant.
  • Summer season (June to August): The most important perk of visiting Matera in summer season is the truth that children are off for college holidays. Nevertheless, the town does get extremely scorching, with temperatures typically reaching over 30°C. Crowds may even be far bigger than in different months. However with that comes festivals, occasions, and out of doors actions that you may solely expertise throughout this season.
  • Autumn (September to November): Just like spring, autumn additionally has cool—however comfy—climate with temperatures of 15°C to 25°C. Crowds in each spring and autumn are far much less in comparison with summer season, which means you possibly can benefit from the native tradition with out an awesome quantity of vacationers.
  • Winter (December to February): Winter will be fairly chilly in Matera—you possibly can count on 7°C to 12°C—however the metropolis is quiet and peaceable, supplying you with a extra stress-free general expertise. Simply do not forget that some sights could have restricted opening hours.
A square in Matera, Italy
The well-known sq. the place James Bond 007 aka Daniel Craig spun his Aston Martin.

Find out how to Get to Matera, Italy

There are just a few methods to get into Matera, Italy, with the primary being flying into one in all two main airports which can be 50 minutes or an hour and 45 minutes away. The closest airport is Bari Karol Wojtyła Airport (BRI), however Brindisi Papola Casale Airport (BDS) can also be a well-liked selection amongst vacationers.

Getting from the airport to Matera is pretty easy as you possibly can lease a automobile, take a taxi, or pre-book a non-public shuttle service that may take you over to the town. 

Alternatively, in the event you’re visiting from one other a part of Italy—which we did—you will get a ferry into Salerno and take a bus, taxi, or shuttle to Matera. We got here into Salerno by a one-hour ferry from Positano. After which hopped on a bus over to Matera—it was a fairly easy expertise. 

And at last, you possibly can even catch a prepare into Matera as the town has the Matera Centrale railway station that’s only a quick stroll from the realm’s most important sights. The Bari to Matera prepare takes slightly below two hours. However because the Matera station is nicely linked, you will get into the town from numerous different elements of Italy. 

Breakfast cave room at the  Ai Tetrazzini Residence—just a short walk from the city’s main attractions.
Breakfast cave room on the Ai Tetrazzini Residence—only a quick stroll from the town’s most important sights.

High Issues to Do in Matera, Italy

There are such a lot of historic, distinctive, and breathtaking issues to do in Matera that you just’ll wrestle to suit all of it in. So, whether or not you’re visiting the town for just some days or perhaps a week, listed here are a few of Matera’s prime sights.  For our go to, we didn’t have a set plan and simply wandered round this stunning place – the youngsters liked the distinctive retailers within the previous city promoting native hand-made handicrafts – the place you may see the artisans at work. Cease to purchase the native rooster whistle and play the piano with a view. Pattern the native eating places and revel in meandering across the previous city. Should you want some fashionable buying the brand new city as loads of shops to fulfill your wants.

A church in Matera, Italy

Church of Saint Mary of Idris

You’ll discover loads of stunning church buildings in Matera. However the Church of Saint Mary of Idris is among the greatest. Often known as the Rock Church and the Chiesa di Santa Maria di Idris, the Church of Saint Mary of Idris is an iconic illustration of Matera’s historic significance. 

Carved right into a rocky cliff within the UNESCO World Heritage Web site Sassi district, the church presents impeccable views of the town. And, in fact, a visit again in time as friends can stroll by the constructing’s inside.

Relationship again to the thirteenth century, the Church of Saint Mary of Idris has spectacular frescoes all through its inside. Nevertheless, you possibly can’t take photographs inside, so it’s a sight you possibly can see solely along with your eyes. 

However though the church itself is magnificent, what actually attracts guests in are its viewpoints. Two of the most well-liked viewpoints are from the terrace subsequent to the church’s entrance and the terrace towards the again of the church.

You’ll be able to entry the again terrace by strolling across the church’s proper aspect and up some steps. When you make it to the terrace, you’ll have uninterrupted views of San Pietro Caveoso and the ravine—it’s really a wide ranging sight to see. 

San Pietro Caveoso

Should you do go to the Church of Saint Mary of Idris, then cease by the San Pietro Caveoso, which is simply subsequent door. The San Pietro Caveoso is one other church with nice views of the town. And because it’s free to enter, you possibly can benefit from the a whole lot of year-old frescos and fantastically painted ceilings. 

Duomo Matera

One other must-visit church in Matera is the Duomo which was devoted to the 2 patron saints of Matera, Sant’Eustachio, and to the Madonna della Bruna. Though the church was initially constructed within the thirteenth century in an Apulian Romanesque model, restoration initiatives courting again to the sixteenth and Seventeenth centuries have remodeled its inside into Baroque and Renaissance model making it a superb attraction for architect lovers.

However don’t fear, even in the event you aren’t an enormous fan of structure, it’s exhausting to not discover the Duomo fascinating—particularly due to its panoramic views of Matera.

local handicrafts from Mater, Italy
native handicrafts from Mater, Italy – the native rooster whistle!

MUSMA

The MUSMA—or Museo della Scultura Contemporanea Matera in the event you favor–is a museum in a Seventeenth-century constructing. Showcasing a outstanding assortment of up to date sculptures, guests can gaze upon artistic endeavors that Italian and worldwide artists carved over 200 years in the past. 

Cave Homes

Matera is residence to dozens of cave homes that we additionally know as Sassi di Matera. Carved into the gentle limestone cliffs of Matera, these cave homes are believed to be a number of the oldest repeatedly inhabited constructions on the planet—courting again to the Paleolithic period.

Matera has now remodeled a number of the cave homes into museums that showcase the normal furnishings and instruments that the Matera residents would have used all these years in the past. And though you don’t want to go to all the caves, a number of the hottest choices to go to are the next: 

  • Vico Solitario Museum
  • Casa Noha
  • Museo Laboratorio della Civilta Contadina
  • Casa Crotta “C’period Una Volta” Antica Matera
  • Casa Grotta Nei Sassi
  • Casa Grotta Del Casalnuovo

Some caves have even been remodeled into eating places and accommodations you possibly can keep in. In order that’s positively one thing to look into in the event you’re after a novel expertise in Matera. 

A cave house cut into the rock in Matera, Italy
A cave home reduce into the rock in Matera, Italy

Murgia Materana Park

Spanning 16,000 hectares, the Murgia Materana Park is a shocking pure reserve in Matera. The park is residence to varied mountain climbing trails, prehistoric cave dwellings, troglodyte settlements, and rock church buildings which can be crammed with well-preserved frescoes simply ready to be explored.

Should you do plan on visiting the park—whether or not that be to immerse your self in Matera’s nature or historical past—then listed here are a number of the park’s highlights:

  • Belvedere Murgi Timone – A viewpoint that offers top-of-the-line views of Matera.
  • Madonna Tre Porta – A rock church with frescoes and an altar. 
  • Chiesa Sant’Agnes – A century-old stone church with frescoes and an altar. 
  • Gravina di Matera – The gorge that runs by the park with picturesque landscapes and distinctive rock formations.
  • Monte Conca – An elevated plateau with unbelievable views of Matera and the encompassing nature.
The modern part of the town in Matera, Italy

The Matera Cathedral

The Matera Cathedral—also referred to as the Cathedral of Santa Maria della Bruna and Sant’Eustachio—is a Roman Catholic church. Constructed in 1270 and sitting on Matera’s highest level, the Matera Cathedral is a sight to not be missed. 

All all through the town, you’ll be capable to see the cathedral with its iconic bell tower. However it is best to positively head as much as the cathedral to marvel on the Apulian-Romanesque and Baroque structure up shut.

The inside of the cathedral has been by a restoration undertaking. And guests to the cathedral can benefit from the constructing’s ornate sculptures, intricate frescoes, and it’s spectacular coffered ceiling.

Piazza San Francesco

The Piazza San Francesco is an open sq. that the Basilica of Saint Francis of Assisi dominates. The church dates again to the thirteenth century and has understandably made its approach onto the UNESCO World Heritage Web site.

However though the church is the sq.’s most important focus, the views of Matera, quaint espresso retailers, and the sculpture that’s modeled after a Salvador Dali portray additionally draw 1000’s of tourists in.

Chiesa del Purgatorio

Fairly probably, probably the most distinctive church in all of Matera is the Church of Purgatory—or the Chiesa del Purgatorio. Builders accomplished the church in 1747. And it now acts as a spot for folks to wish for the souls who’re trapped in purgatory.

You’ll be able to see ornamental skulls, skeletons, and work of souls in a state of struggling each within the church’s exterior and inside.

You probably have younger youngsters, then it could be price skipping the Church of Purgatory—particularly its inside. But when your youngsters are older, then I’m positive they may love the church’s exterior. 

The place James Bond escaped in his Aston Martin in No Time to Die

James Bond 007 Guided Tour

James Bond followers will love visiting Matera the film James Bond: No Time to Die filmed a number of scenes on this historic metropolis. You’ll be able to, in fact, do your personal tour. However a guided tour will take you to all of the must-visit places whereas explaining the storylines of the movie within the course of.

Severe James Bond followers may even keep within the Palazzo Gattini Luxurious Resort, which stars initially of the film. 

Strolling Excursions

Lastly, one thing I at all times like to do when visiting historic cities like Matera, Italy, is to move off on a strolling tour. Strolling excursions are a superb solution to see the town’s sights whereas studying about its fascinating historical past from a educated information. 

Your information on a strolling tour of Matera will take you throughout Matera’s prime sights and down its cobblestone streets so you possibly can actually get a really feel of the town and all it has to supply.

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