Last summer, my wife and I visited Matera in the region of Basilicata in southern Italy. We were curious to learn why UNESCO inscribed Matera into its Heritage list. And it didn’t take long for us to find an answer. The old part of the city, called Sassi di Matera, originate from a prehistoric settlement, and are suspected to be some of the first human settlements in Italy. The Sassi are houses dug into the rock, often with no windows.
Because of the resemblance of ancient sites in and around Jerusalem, director Mel Gibson chose Matera as the setting for his famous movie The Passion of the Christ.
We shot several panoramic photos of the Sassi and surroundings so you can enjoy this very particular city that is finally starting to get the attention from tourist searching for the unbeaten path.
Click on the images below to view the high resolution version of the pictures. Each high-res image is about ~500K.