Beaches, Experience, Hightlight

Metaponto Beach

Metaponto, between a crystalline sea and
the splendor of the Magna Graecia


The Ionian coast of the Basilicata region, about 35 km long, is undoubtedly famous for its vast fine, golden sand beaches that overlook a clean turquoise sea. In particular, the beach in Metaponto, lapped by a crystalline sea and equipped with various bathing establishments, is a beach with a shallow and gently sloping bottom, making t suitable for families with children. Completing what Metaponto offers its visitors is its fun Aquatic park for all ages.

The Pancratium Maritimum or “sand lily” still continues to prosper here today. This flower gives the beach a sweet and, at the same time, wild look while, not very far away, the pine groves and eucalyptus fill the air with their scents, which blend together with those of the sea. After a morning on the soft sand beach in Metaponto, the day ends in the best way possible: an afternoon in the Archaeological Park admiring the splendor of the Magna Graecia.

Experience, Food & Wine

Flavors of Lucania

The flavors of the Lucania territory


The Basilicata is a region that has made its food and wine peculiarities a great strong point for its tourists. The traditional cuisine of the territory of Bernalda, based on simple ingredients from the peasant culture, has been able to preserve delicious flavors over time.

Among its typical dishes, several are of very ancient origin. One is its cooked bread, where day-old bread is soaked in water, seasoned with oil, salt and oregano, put in the oven, and then served hot. Another way to recall its tradition is to boil beets in water and mix them with breadcrumbs that have been fried with oil and garlic.

The long journey among local products starts from the PDO oil of the Vulture and certainly passes through its hot peppers, characterized by their low water content. Once the peduncles of the peppers have been strung with a string, obtaining a necklaces called “serte”, and after being quickly dried in a strictly natural manner, the hot peppers are fried in extra virgin olive oil for a crisp and fragrant product, ideally used for garnishing first courses, red meats, or salted cod. When ground, they are excellent for accompanying a variety of dishes and also used for preparing cheeses and cold cuts, as well as for seasoning pasta with sauce, garlic, oil, and fried breadcrumbs.

The gastronomic itinerary continues with the red eggplant, pecorino cheese, caciocavallo cheese from Podolica cows, mushrooms, horse meat, salted cod and, finally, savoring the Aglianico del Vulture, one of the most prestigious red wines in the national enological panorama.

Other typical products of the Lucania territory include: fiordilatte cheese from the southern Apennines, padraccio cheese from Pollino, casieddu braided cheese, burrino cheese, cacioricotta cheese, toma sheep's cheese, headcheese, Lucanica sausage from Cancellara, pezzente salami, ventresca tuna belly, Sarconi beans, Senise hot peppers, poverello beans from Rotonda, Matera bread, chestnuts, fresh pasta, Ofanto cauliflower, San Severo potatoes, black summer truffles, and staccia oranges and white percoco peaches from Tursi.

Experience, Hightlight, Popular traditions

Rites and legends

Rites and legends


Through some of the most suggestive rites and legends of the Basilicata region, Borgo San Gaetano brings you towards discovering the true soul of the Lucania territory. Local events follow rituals dictated by the calendar, revealing aspects and peculiarities that can only be found in this land of charm and memories. You are invited to be protagonists of celebrations and ancestral feasts, experiencing stories passed down from generation to generation.

The night of the Cucibocca of Montescaglioso - January 5th

The mysterious protagonists of this rite circulate among the alleyways of the town center wearing dark cloaks, old hats, and a fake hemp beards. They carry a big needle with which they threaten to sew the mouths ("cuci bocca") of the children who approach them intrigued. This mysterious rite is repeated every year at the end of the Christmas festivities and is a sort of initiation for children towards helping them win over their fears.

Maggio festival in Accettura - April 23rd to June 18th

After a long preparation, the highest, biggest, and straightest turkey oak - called the “Maggio” - from the Montepiano woods is chosen, and a week later the top of a holly tree called the “Cima” from another forest. The Maggio is cut down first and, after 8 days, it begins its journey. The Cima is then cut, and at the end, the parts of these two different trees are joined together, or “married” in the heart of Accettura, where they are then raised and climbed up by teams of men called the "Maggiaioli”.

The parade of the Turks in Potenza - May 29th to 30th

The role players of the historical parade, in period costumes, bring back to life from time immemorial the legendary event dating back to 1111, when a miracle by St. Gerard allowed the inhabitants of Potenza to repel the attack of the Turks.

The Feast of the Madonna della Bruna in Matera - July 2nd

This feast, in honor of the protector of the city of Matera, takes place in a rather suggestive manner. During the procession, the spirit of the people is exalted in mass jubilation and the cart that accompanies the statue of the Madonna, created by artisans over many months, is assaulted and destroyed.

"The dream of a night... in that town!" - Colobraro - August

In a superstitious rather than a derogatory manner, Colobraro is called “that town”. This is presumably due to the fact that the word "Colobraro" is considered unmentionable because of the superstitious belief that even by just merely enunciating the name brings misfortune. Based on these beliefs, "The dream of a night... in that town" event was created. A theatralized itinerary held among the streets and characteristic squares of the town center that dominates the Sinni valley, where anthropology marries theater, magic, and food and wine, tying itself to the charm of a unique landscape.

Live Nativity scene in the Sassi of Matera - between Christmas and the Epiphany

Among the splendid scenery of the Sassi, the live Nativity scene of Matera allows you to become an integral part of the itinerary. In fact, every visitor has the opportunity to become a “visiting-actor” and become one of the role players.

San Bernardino Patron Saint’s Day - August 7th-27th

One of the most exciting feasts of the Basilicata region is the Patron Saint’s Day of Bernalda. United by the devotion to the patron saint, the devotees begin festivities among religious observances, historical reenactments, and entertainment.
For detailed information on the program:

The world of Frederick II in Lagopesole - all year round

The castle of Lagopesole, a place that calls to mind Frederick II par excellence, welcomes visitors and leads them into the world of this Emperor. The narrative museum, through modern technologies and innovative languages combined with historical research, aims at reviving the legend of the Stupor Mundi - the “Marvel of the World”, used to describe Fredrick II.

Beaches, Experience

Marina di Pisticci

Marina di Pisticci,
Colors and scents of the Ionian coast


Just a few kilometers from Bernalda you’ll find the spectacular Marina di Pisticci, which can be reached from the town, located in the hills, through a steep street called Le Varre. This is an ideal destination for spending some days in pure relaxation, between sea and culture. Its name comes from the famous town in the Lucania territory, Pisticci: a tried and true paradise of nature.

Here, you can spend long, relaxing days lying on a sandy expanse of coastline, strolling through the fragrant pine grove, and bathing in the waters of its crystal clear sea. A walk through the hinterland, a landscape that looks very much like the moon, is also something that should not be missed.

Experience, Places to see


Metaponto. A magnificent testimony
of the Magna-Graecia civilization


The archaeological area of Metaponto is an open-air museum that is a must-see for all lovers of history and archeology, since it represents the best place to understand the historical evolution of the area, from the Bronze Age to the advent of the Romans.

Founded in the mid-7th century B.C. by Greeks from the Acaia, Metaponto became one of the most important colonies of the Magna Graecia. Located "between two rivers" - the Bradano and the Basento - it is a hamlet in the municipality of Bernalda, in the province of Matera. In the park and the Archaeological Museum of Metaponto, traces have remained of a glorious past made up of heroes and gods, warriors and philosophers, like the mathematician Pythagoras who in founded his school and died in Metaponto.

The imposing Palatine Tables are a symbol of the ancient Greek city, as are the twelve Doric columns, remnants of the temple of Hera. The Antiquarium, the theater, the Roman castro, the city agora, and the necropolis, along with the temples of Apollo Licio, Demeter, and Aphrodite, enrich this itinerary that is already full of charm and history.

Following in the footsteps of Pythagoras

Walking through the nature areas of Metaponto transmits knowledge and emotions just as it once did through the tales of the philosopher, Pythagoras, who loved to teach his disciples while walking in the woods of that area, an area that has remained unchanged for centuries and that today has many stories to tell.

Metaponto is open to visitors through guided tours for all ages, with professional tour guides and also young volunteers, "Cicero’s Apprentices", from the tourism course at the IIS Bernalda institute.

Experience, Places to see


Craco, Ghost town


In the 1960s, the historical center of Craco, in the province of Matera, was part of a migration that made it a tried and true ghost town. Abandoned after a disastrous landslide, which was followed by more landslides, Craco has us experience the same emotion that directors probably did when they chose it as a movie set.

A wonder for thousands of tourists who come upon a town that has no intention of dying, as it was for those directors. Francesco Rosi shot several of his scenes from his “Christ Stopped at Eboli” in Craco, but the town also fascinated Mel Gibson, who chose it as the location of the final scene of "The Passion". Craco was also in the movie, "Basilicata Coast to Coast<2 by Rocco Papaleo.

Experience, Hightlight, Places to see


Matera, City of Stones


There is a place where you can walk through a complex and fascinating urban ecosystem of cave dwellings carved into stone. The suggestive city of Matera, better known as the Città dei Sassi - City of Stones - or also the “Underground City”, is famous all over the world for its archaic structures that constitute one of the oldest existing inhabited centers, as well as the first site in southern Italy to be included in the list of World Heritage sites by UNESCO.

However, Matera is also included in the best international guides as a cultural destination, especially after it became popular because of several successful film productions. Numerous events and periodic exhibitions, in addition to itineraries that evoke the life of past times within the Sassi, represent constant attractions in a suggestive scenario that has given the capital city of the Basilicata region the title of European Capital of Culture 2019.

Experience, Nature

Hunting for mushrooms

Hunting for mushrooms


The Lucania territory is characterized by an extraordinary amount of mushrooms, largely belonging to European mycological flora. A walk through the woods of this territory, along with certified mushroom identification experts, is an experience towards discovering the various species that spontaneously grow in the heart of the Basilicata region. You will find many species of porcini mushrooms and extraordinary specimens belonging to almost all of the most well-know types of mushrooms in Italy, including also the very select white truffle.

Experience, Nature

The beauty foliage

Contemplating the beauty foliage


There are wonders of nature that are just waiting to be admired. Just like foliage. The beauty of foliage, which in autumn is tinged with yellow and red, and turns into a kaleidoscope of warm hues. With a backpack on your shoulders and comfortable shoes on your feet, you can spend hours admiring the transparencies and veining of the leaves filled with new tones. A fascinating guided tour you shouldn’t miss, for those who love colors and walking through nature.

Experience, Nature

The flavor of olive oil

The flavor of olive oil, you make yourself


Choose your olive tree, pick the olives, extract the oil together with the millworker, and take the oil home with you after its been taste-tested. This experience gives you the opportunity to pick olives in the heart of the Basilicata region and, with your family, enjoy an oil that is renowned for its quality. You will have the opportunity to discover the land, places, and thousand-year traditions, personally experiencing the production processes related to the cultivation and transformation of olives.

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