HPB’s holiday booking service has been rated 4.7 out of 5
based on 14510 customer reviews on Feefo.
Feefo Platinum Award Feefo logo

Puglia's incredible ancient cave city

Posted by Luci Ackers on 14 March 2016
Related property: Coreggia
Cave city in Puglia

Matera is a town in southern Italy which is truly unique. It lies in the side of a ravine created by a river that is now the stream Gravina. The ancient town, or the Sassi di Matera (literally the 'stones of Matera') is formed from an ancient network of subterranean slums, dating from Palaeolithic, troglodyte settlements; some of the earliest settlements in Italy. The Sassi and the Park of the Rupestrian Churches now form an important UNESCO World Heritage Site. And it's only a short distance from Coreggia, so take the opportunity to visit while you can!

Already having been occupied thousands of years ago, the myriad of natural caves were deepened and expanded throughout Classical and medieval eras, forming more inhabitable spaces used by peasants. Perfectly adapted to their terrain, ascending the flanks of the ravine, these shelters were considered slums. It has only been relatively recently that the caves' potential and wonder have been recognised.

Most of the more elaborate stonework dates from the Renaissance period when many of the caves were given new facades and today carved stone stairways still connect the arches, attics and balconies of the streets. The way the stone structures are formed means a maze of narrow streets and alleyways weave throughout buildings whose foundations often form the roof of the dwelling below.

Rock hewn churches, created by Byzantine monks sit amongst the jigsaw of carved stone houses. Streets run along the tops of the houses below in an almost honey comb effect; cemeteries were built above the roofs of their churches and what you can see from the surface of this warren-like town is approximately only 30% of the whole Sassi structure! There are metal walkways to follow through an enormous 16th century cistern complex that lies hidden beneath the town's main plaza and more modern renovations have been made to create underground hotels as well as cave restaurants, cafés and clubs. It really is a remarkable place!

You won't really know where to start, there are so many incredible buildings and quirky little streets that you may just want to wander and soak it all up. But if the architecture is a real draw for you then there are several places you won't want to miss. The UNESCO site it protected for its many ecclesiastical buildings: the magnificent Cathedral of Matera is an important one, first built during the 13th century and with that prominent bell tower which is so easily recognisable from the distance. The Convent of Saint Augustine is a picturesque complex that consists of a monastery and a church. The church of Santa Maria de Idris is one of the rupestrian churches with a number of fabulous frescos to admire; it's built into the rock and views from the top are great.

There is an abundance of great cave restaurants to try and you're bound to find somewhere fantastic. The Trattoria del Caveoso is located close to the Medieval art museum and has a good choice of food as well as a beautiful environment.

Don't pass up the chance to visit Matera while you're staying in one of the Trulli properties. You won't regret it! Find out how to stay in the Trulli by entering your details at the bottom of the page.

Luci Ackers

Luci Ackers

Luci loves getting out and about for a good cycle ride or easy-going walks in the countryside, and thoroughly enjoyed the time she previously spent working for the National Trust. Her love of writing started from a young age and on rainy days nothing beats curling up in a secret corner with a good book.

How can I find out more?

The Holiday Property Bond could do as much for your quality of life as it has done for many thousands of families who have already invested. That's why we invite you to get in touch with us in any of these 3 ways and please don't forget our unique 'Money back promise' and 'interest free loan' options.

Request our brochure Speak to a representative Explore one of our UK sites

Please request our fully illustrated holiday property brochure

Please read "How HPB works" and then we will be delighted to send you our brochure, including our property portfolio, and your FREE copy of Insight Magazine. See the beautiful holiday homes and magnificent locations where you can spend your holidays as a Bondholder and learn how impressed Bondholders have been by our handling of the problems caused by coronavirus.

Please complete and submit the form or, alternatively, telephone our FREE brochure request line on 0800 230 0391

Request a brochure
Title *  
First Name *  
Surname *  
Email address *
Postcode *  
Telephone number
How did you hear about us?

We will use the details you provide above to send you our detailed HPB brochure and keep you updated about HPB holiday offers.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

SUBMIT SUBMIT
* Indicates required fields
HPB’s holiday booking service has been rated 4.7 out of 5 based on 14510 customer reviews on Feefo.

COVID 19 / CORONAVIRUS UPDATE

Last updated
20th September 2021 at 14:00


Our Statement on Covid 19 / Coronavirus

Last updated
20th September 2021 at 14:00


Operating safely with covid-19

Last updated
20th September 2021 at 14:00


Frequently Asked Questions

Last updated
20th September 2021 at 14:00


Travel Status of Overseas Bond Sites

You can speak to one of our representatives

Your local HPB representative will be happy to call or video call you at a convenient time for an informal chat. Simply fill in your details and we'll do the rest.

Most of our representatives are Bondholders themselves and all have visited a number of Bond sites.

The representative will give you all the information you need and then leave you to make up your own mind. He or she will talk to you about your holiday requirements and what level of investment is needed to secure the kind of holidays you want.

Video chat now available with a local representative

This request is for new enquiries only, if you are an existing Bondholder please contact us via myBond.

How should we contact you? *  
Title *  
First Name *  
Surname *  
Email address *
Telephone number *  
Post code *  
Preferred Date/Time
Preferred Date/Time 2
Preferred Date/Time 3
OR
Please contact me to arrange a date

Your local representative will contact you to confirm the date and time.

Date/Time *  
How did you hear about us?
Chosen date (choose above) *
Chosen time (choose above) *

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

SUBMIT SIGN ME UP
* Indicates required fields


See our stunning holiday properties for yourself

Having a Private Tour at an HPB holiday location is an enjoyable way to see the high standards of furnishings and facilities you could enjoy with HPB. One of our representatives will show you around the site and answer any questions you may have.

Alternatively, you are welcome to book a Personal Presentation at a hotel near you. You can chat to one of our representatives, ask your questions and view the complete portfolio of HPB locations.

BOOK A PRIVATE TOUR OR PERSONAL PRESENTATION

This advertisement is issued by HPB Management Limited ("HPBM") registered at HPB House, Newmarket, Suffolk, CB8 8EH. HPBM is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and is the main UK agent and the property manager for HPB, issued by HPB Assurance Limited ("HPBA") registered in the Isle of Man and authorised by the Financial Services Authority there. The Trustee of HPB is Equiom (Isle of Man) Limited registered at Jubilee Buildings, Victoria Street, Douglas, Isle of Man, IM1 2SH. The Securities Manager is Stanhope Capital LLP of 35 Portman Square, London, W1H 6LR.

Holders of policies issued by HPBA will not be protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme if the company becomes unable to meet its liabilities to them but Isle of Man compensation arrangements apply to new policies. No medical examination required. HPB is available exclusively through HPBM. HPBM promotes only HPB and is not independent of HPBA.