Most cities start at the top: A hillside, a mountain, a promontory. Matera swells from the bottom, an ancient series of caves carved into a ravine and expanded by man. It’s easy to believe that this is one of the oldest continuously inhabited places in the world. What isn’t so easy is this: Until the 1950s, the rough scooped dwellings were home to 30,000 people, when the government moved 15,000 out of the caves and into housing above. Today the “sassi’’ or stones are a UNESCO World Heritage Site, still home to some locals, churches, hotels and restaurants. If you saw Mel Gibson’s The Passion it will look familiar; some scenes were shot here.
Wednesday, March 05, 2008
Posted by DARCOS CRUZ at 10:40 AM