Bernalda, in southern Basilicata and in the province of Matera, is a quiet town with about 12,000 people. It sits strategically on the road to the ancient Greek ruins of Metaponto, which was a flourishing outpost of Magna Grecia and was founded in the 7th century BC. It was also known as the town where the famous Greek philosopher and mathematician Pythagoras was born.
Bernalda is also the ancestral home of famous movie director, producer and screenwriter, Francis Ford Coppola. He first visited there when he was 20 yrs old and was greeted by his numerous cousins, uncles and aunts all of whom had great stories to share with him of his family and ancestral links to this beautiful town.
“You go to Tuscany and Amalfi for those big beautiful postcard views, but Bernalda is for escaping the tourist circuit. What you may trade in brain-melting beauty, you gain in chance encounters at the local gelateria, the cinematic purr of everyday life. Fifteen minutes away there’s a beach, where fishermen pull up with their boats and grill up the day’s catch fresh, right on the sand” Coppola.
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Coppola, famous for his Godfather films (1972 -1990); The Great Gatsby (1974) and Apocalypse Now (1979) amongst many other notable films decided to buy a historical 16th century palazzo in the centre of Bernalda, in 2004. Known as
Palazzo Margherita, it is a truly luxury hotel in Italy. There are beautifully themed rooms, a peaceful hidden courtyard garden and a fabulous little cafe’ attached to the building.
There will be time to stroll through Bernalda on the way to the archeological ruins at Metaponto where we see magnificent artefacts in the museum as well as walk through the ruins and learn all about the Greek culture of 2700 years ago…
Guests will take time out in Coppola’s cafe’ living like a local – indulging in local pastries and good coffee.
There is even a chocolate artisan right next door as well… there is so much to enjoy here in Bernalda.
BASILICATA – what to expect:
When visiting Bernalda with Luciana and Fabio on an
8 day BACK ROADS of BASILICATA tour, there is time also to admire the 11th century Norman castle and the Mother Church from the 16th century. It is also only about 15 minutes from the Ionian coastline of the Mediterranean.
Matera is the province and is famous for its ancient cave dwellings, dramatic landscapes, and historic houses. It is also our base for 4 nights where one can explore this whole area calmly and far from the tourist crowds.
Basilicata is quite undiscovered—one of a few remaining regions of Italy where culture, food, and wine remain authentic and untouched. The locals are very hospitable and a place where every guest feels more like a friend than a passing tourist.
LEARN MORE ABOUT FABIO HERE:
Tours will be lead by Fabio, a charming and very knowledgeable archeologist and English speaking guide. His passion for southern Italy and his vast experience make him the perfect escort on a Basilicata travel experience with Touring Abruzzo.
Here are some very interesting blogs and sites:
SEE YOU IN BASILICATA THIS YEAR! CONTACT LUCIANA