Matera is best known for its cave dwellings, but the European Capital of Culture 2019 is a great place to visit for many reasons. Here’s how to see it on a budget.
Pashtello is one of the best places in town for breakfast, serving high-quality coffee and pastries in a refined space ($8). Fill up here before heading off on a walking tour of the Sassi, the old neighborhoods of cave dwellings that make Matera famous.
For lunch try San Biago, which focuses on using local ingredients. Bag a table on the terrace and enjoy great views while you tuck in ($25).
Avoid the afternoon heat with a visit to the Palombaro Lungo, the biggest water cistern in the town, and Matera cathedral, on top of the Civitas hill with great views over town.
In the evening, go for an aperitivo at Vicolo Cieco, a wine bar inside a cave house ($10) and then head for dinner at L’Abbondanza Lucana, a restaurant inside a cave that serves traditional local dishes like wild boar ragu ($25).
Continue your night out at La Focagna, a tiny little bar usually packed to the rafters, or go to Ridola for a more relaxed atmosphere ($10).
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