Basilicata is one of the very few locations in the world where you can explore an area steeped in history dating back to the Palaeolithic age, a time when woolly mammoths roamed the earth. From pre-historic times until the modern day, Basilicata is a land of many influences.
After World War II the importance of Basilicata started to become widely recognised, most notably when the Sassi di Matera became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1994. With one of the most ancient histories on the Italian peninsula, Basilicata truly is one of Italy’s greatest historical treasures. In the words of Carlo Levi,‘The future has an ancient heart.’
The rich history of the region can be seen in its architecture, ranging from the exquisite rock churches of Byzantine monks to Longobard, Angevin, Norman-Swabian, Benedictine, Franciscan and Romanesque architecture. Frescoes, paintings, and sculpted objects throughout Basilicata represent a long and beautiful artistic heritage. The region even boasts what is thought to be a self portrait by Leonardo da Vinci while the contemporary art scene includes permanent installations by internationally recognised artists.
Basilicata is also full of vibrant culture and traditions, different from the sort of things you can see in a sterile, cold museum. Exciting and alive, constantly growing and evolving, each generation adds the thumbprint of its own particular Basilicata to the culture as a whole.