Melfi

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Melfi

Slide background

Melfi

Slide background

Melfi

Slide background

Melfi

Slide background

Melfi

Slide background

Melfi

HOME TO ITALY’S MOST BEAUTIFUL CASTLE

The medieval town of Melfi is situated in the province of Potenza, at the foot of the extinct volcano; Mount Vulture. The town itself is surrounded by a winding Norman city wall, the only one of its kind in Southern Italy.

Melfi has been inhabited since Neolithic times but begun gaining importance throughout the Middle Ages when it became the Norman Capital of Southern Italy. The spectacular scenery of this medieval village is not to be missed, with its splendid cathedral, Norman walls and rich cultural heritage.

Melfi is most famous for being the chosen headquarters of the Roman Emperor Federico II of Svevia.  From here he issued the famous “Constitutiones Augustales” to regulate feudal rights; the imposing stone castle which stands on the hill was said to be his favourite residence, and also considered to be one of the most beautiful castles in Italy, featuring an impressive 10 towers. The castle has been
modified by its various residents over the years, and now includes the National Archaeological
Museum of Melfi.

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CRYPT OF SANTA MARGHERITA

The numerous cave churches of Melfi known as “Chiese Rupestri” are a major attraction. The crypt of Santa Margherita located 3km away from the town is the most important cave church in the Melfi area and its entirety is carved out of the rock in the 13th century. The interior of the cave is covered with frescoes and paintings depicting the life and martyrdom of Saint Margherita. This is a fine cave church, well worth a visit.

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DON’T MISS

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MELFI CASTLE

Emerging from the rock face you will discover what is to be considered as one of the most beautiful castles in Italy, featuring an impressive 10 towers. The castle has been modified by its various residents over the years, and now includes the Archaeological Museum of Melfi which houses a fascinating collection of local artefacts dating back to 8th century BC including a sarcophagus of Asian origin dating back to the 2nd century BC.

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CATTEDRALE DI SANTA MARIA ASSUNTA (MELFI CATHEDRAL)

The “Duomo dell’Assunta” is the most important religious monument of Melfi. The Cathedral dates back to the eleventh century, but has been renovated several times due to an earthquake. Only the bell tower dates back to the Norman period, whilst the front clearly has Baroque influences. The interior contains a magnificent 13th century fresco; the Madonna with Child and Angels.

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VILLAGES NEAR MELFI

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MONTICCHIO LAKES

Situated to the southwest of Melfi there are two beautiful volcanic lakes, surrounded by thick, green vegetation; a delightful place to walk all year round. In the summer you can hire pedal boats and investigate the lakes by yourselves. The stately Benedictine Abbey of San Michele overlooks the lakes, high in the forests above it is a wonderfully peaceful place.

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