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  • Writer's pictureCiara Mooney

Matera - Undiscovered Italy


The words Fascinating and intriguing don’t even being to describe this city, perched on the side of a canyon, the grey carcase of the city hugs the side of the rock as if were etched into it. The façade hides what I can only describe as the most intriguing and best kept secrets I have ever had the joy to discover. It devours you like the caves have devoured the rock over many years creating this wonderful place. From one side of Matera you can travel back into history by looking to the far side of the canyon and like a mirror image of where you are standing is what it was like so many hundreds of years before, you can see the caves in their primal state.

A place were in a garden you see a neighbours chimney were you can see donkey bones hold the terracotta pipes because they don’t rot. The boutique hotels restored with such care and attention to detail it’s like walking into heaven.

This city once known as the shame of Italy is now a UNESCO site which is host to the 2019 European capital of culture bypassing the likes of Venice and Sienna. It stands triumph after resurrecting itself from a state of abandonment and disrepair like a rugged diamond which after being cut carefully and cleaned sparkles so much you have to do a double take to make sure it’s real.

Its streets are once again alive with a hive of activity never has a city before captured my imagination and some film directors such as Mel Gibson’s The Passion of Christ. I long to travel back to discover what else is hidden from view waiting to be discovered.

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