Potenza

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Potenza

Slide background

Potenza

Slide background

Potenza

Slide background

Potenza

Slide background

Potenza

Slide background

Potenza

POTENZA

Potenza is the capital of Basilicata and at an altitude of 819m, Potenza is the highest regional capital in Italy.  Nestled within the Apennine Mountains, the city overlooks the Basento River valley.

The city was founded in Roman times however most of the town itself was destroyed by an earthquake in 1857. On top of this the remaining structures suffered significant damage in World War II.As a result, Potenza has lost many of its ancient and medieval buildings, but it is still a vibrant city definitely worth visiting.

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The historic centre of Potenza is located in the upper part of the city and is accessible via escalators. The square of Mario Pagano, is found in the historic centre and provides a perfect base for exploring the city. Across the square is the Via Pretoria, the famous street of Potenza, that goes from the east to the west side of the city. Packed with bars, shops and restaurants, Via Pretoria is a vibrant hub during both the day and evening.
Along the Via Pretoria there are also many major cultural, architectural and art historical buildings, which include the “Palazzo del Governo”, the recently restored ‘Stabile’ theatre, and the church of San Francesco of Assisi which was founded in 1274. The church houses the De Grasis sepulchre and a 13th century Madonna in Byzantine style that is worth visiting. The Romanesque church of San Michele Arcangelo dating back to the 11th century has many beautiful artworks including over 500 ancient frescos, one of which depicts St. Michele slaying the dragon. Also worth visiting is the Torre Guevara, the last remnant of an old castle which now hosts art exhibitions.

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DON’T MISS

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THE PROVINCIAL ARCHAEOLOGICAL MUSEUM

The Archaeological Museum of Basilicata in Potenza is definitely worth a visit. Located to the north of the town centre, it contains numerous interesting artefacts, ranging from the prehistoric age to Roman times.

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THE DUOMO CATHEDRAL OF SAN GERADO-POTENZA

The Cathedral of Potenza was originally built during the 12th century in Gothic style and then restored in a neo-classical style in the 18th century. The cathedral still houses the rose window and the apse from the original 12th-century structure and inside the cathedral lie the remains of Saint Gerardo, the patron saint of Potenza.

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NATURE RESERVE OF LAKE PANTANO DI PIGNOLA

Located a few kilometres from Potenza, the Lake of Pantano di Pignola spreads out into a valley surrounded by mountains. The lake was formed by an artificial dam in an area of meadows and cultivated fields. The nature reserve is home to a variety of wildlife including Foxes, Weasels, Beach Martens, Hedgehogs and Shrews. The habitat provides a perfect environment for birds and the reserve is home to many beautiful species including Grey Herons, Moorhens, Egrets, Widgeons, Teals and many other species of duck, Great-Crested Grebes, Kingfishers and Lapwings.

VILLAGES NEAR POTENZA

ACERENZA – known locally as ‘Cathedral City’

CASTELMEZZANO – a picturesque mountain-top village, home to the exhilarating ‘Flight of The Angel’ zip-wire

MELFI – a medieval town with a fantastic castle and fortress ruins

VENOSA – a historic town steeped in history

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THE FLIGHT OF THE ANGEL

The ‘Flight of the Angel’ is one of Basilicata’s most exhilarating tourist attractions and is not for the faint-hearted. This zip wire adventure takes you on an incredible 1452 m journey from the peaks of Castelmezzano in the Gallipoli Cognato National Park, across to the village of Pietrapertosa which clings to a mountain peak opposite.

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