Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page >

Cilento, Calabria and Basilicata: Help fill in a few blanks for us

Cilento, Calabria and Basilicata: Help fill in a few blanks for us

Old Mar 2nd, 2014, 03:15 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,137
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Cilento, Calabria and Basilicata: Help fill in a few blanks for us

Hello all – we could use a little help filling in some blanks on our schedule and deciding on a place to stay in or near Matera.

We’ve been to Italy many times and in Sept/Oct, 2012 visited Naples, the Cilento & the Amalfi coast. This year we had planned to visit France but…for various reasons really want to return to the Cilento coast. Friends of ours are on sabbatical and we have all decided to spent 5 days together there.

We arrive in Naples on May 6th and leave from Naples on May 19th. 13 days in Italy. Here’s what we’ve got:
- 2 nights Naples (visit Pompeii, Fields of Fire.)
- 2 nights Castellabate – our friends join us here. We visit Paestum, wander the towns, swim.
- 3 nights Agriturismo Tenuta Terre di Bosco (we stayed here in 2012, loved it). We’ll rent a boat, we hope to go fishing, we may go hiking.
- 3 nights…somewhere (see below)
- 2 nights in Matera staying in a lovely Sassi B&B or a few kilometers away at L’Orto di Lucania – www.ortodilucania.it
- 1 night Naples

I’m considering shifting the 2 nights in Matera back so that we have 2 nights in Naples at the end. There’s still so much to do, see and eat there!

As you can see we've got 2 or 3 nights we have not planned yet (I may add a night to Naples.) I had also thought of staying in Pisciotta for 2 nights as we really like that area. But DH is a geologist who loves road trips and is interested in exploring mountains and hill towns in Calabria or Basilicata. On www.borghitalia.it we found a few that interest us: Altomonte and Morano Calabro in Calabria and Pietrapertosa in Basilicata. I’m hoping that someone can shed light on these - have you visited the region and those towns? Recommendations?

Also – thoughts on staying in Matera or staying a few miles away at what appears to be a lovely agriturismo with good food and good views? Have you stayed at L'Orco di Lucania? Is it worth 3 nights? Other suggestions for the area?
rosetravels is offline  
Old Mar 2nd, 2014, 03:45 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 22,222
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I will return with a longer response, but for now: I visited Morano Calabro. It is a beautiful, very small village. We drove there from Castrovillari, which has a very well known, and excellent, restaurant, Locanda d'Alia, which I would recommend.

http://www.alia.it/booking/index.php...aurant&lang=en


It is convenient to the Pollino Park, which sounds perfect for your spouse!! If you go there, make sure to eat at Locanda d'Alia (which is a also a hotel), but perhaps stay at Agriturismo Le Farnie, in Altomonte, which has been recommended to me for good food.


http://www.agriturismolefarnie.it/index.php?p=39

Morano Calabro is so small that it will not take you long to investigate at your leisure. But make sure you are there during local business hours, or you will find things shut tight.

I did not make it to Altomonte, although wanted to very much; we just did not have enough time.



Agree that Pisciotta is beautiful; we spent 2 nights at an agriturismo at the entrance to the town; this is very convenient as you can park there and walk around the entire town (there are some steep streets, though).

http://www.amachina.it/brown/index.html

There is also a reportedly good hotel in the center of town, with a view. But I think you know that!!

I would stay IN Matera, for 2-3 nights. Admittedly, having the car is a pain, but I think it is worth it to be in this remarkable town.

I am sorry this response is not too well organized! Please feel free to ask more questions, and let me know which I did not cover..and I will expand this once I have time to read again, and think upon it some more!! I love those regions, and there is much to explore!!
ekscrunchy is offline  
Old Mar 2nd, 2014, 04:45 PM
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,137
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I appreciate the reply and the info and sharing your opinions - thanks ekscrunchy!

DH has been using google earth to explore that area and if we can combine that with good food and a view then we'd both be happy.
rosetravels is offline  
Old Mar 2nd, 2014, 05:04 PM
  #4  
kja
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 22,983
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Matera is fascinating, but as you say, there is SO much to see and do in Naples, and you are going to be in Naples, so it might make sense to wait to visit Matera until you visit Pugla.
kja is offline  
Old Mar 2nd, 2014, 06:13 PM
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,137
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
kja - I totally appreciate your logic. Especially since I made that same point in travel planning... As you can see I had to cede that point. We may not make it to Puglia for several years and DH would like to see Pietrapertosa and the mountains of Basilicata.
rosetravels is offline  
Old Mar 10th, 2014, 08:38 AM
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,137
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I'm checking in again with small edits. We've changed our schedule slightly - flying into Naples on the 5th and out of Bari on the 20th. Our flight from the US is now RT from Milan - cheaper, easier flights and good EasyJet connections to southern Italy. I cancelled our overly complicated FF mileage flights once I added up how much they were going to cost in layovers and transfers!

So we are:
3 nights in Naples
6 nights in the Cilento
2 nights in a hill town somewhere
2 nights in Matera (we're booked at one of the Sassi B&Bs - sounds lovely!)
1 night near the airport in Milan

Then we have one more night. We could spend that in Puglia, just to get a taste and quick look, or we could spend another night in the Cilento or near Pollino Park.

So, 2 questions:
1: Is it worth just spending a night and a day exploring Puglia? We could probably take a night from Cilento and shuffle things to have 2 nights in Puglia. We fly to Milan early evening on the 20th.

2: In Naples I'm torn between staying in the center (Meuble Sta Chiara where we stayed before) or staying the Chaia neighborhood near Piazza Plebescito. Small decision but....thoughts?

Thanks!
rosetravels is offline  
Old Mar 10th, 2014, 10:46 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 22,222
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
2. In Naples, the center is obviously more central to sights and food markets. But if you stayed there before, consider Chaia--we liked the Palazzo Alabardieri and they had good web rates a few years ago. More upscale area, with its own distinct charms.

1. Where are you thinking in Puglia? You might consider Bernalda in Basilicata--from there you can see Metaponto archeological site, the town of Pisticci, and the "ghost" town of Craco. The scenery in that area is sublime if you like windswept, rocky landscapes. This is a gorgeous area of Italy that sees few tourists.

http://www.immopolis.pl/wp-content/g...asta/craco.jpg

We stayed in an agriturismo not far from Bernalda, but I would probably stay in Bernalda itself next time.
ekscrunchy is offline  
Old Mar 10th, 2014, 12:28 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 6,534
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I suggest you stay in the Matera area the extra night and visit other parts of the Murge and the ravines. The ravine in Laterza (in Puglia) is one of the largest in Europe. Gravina in Puglia has dramatic features. (You might be able to see Gravina in Puglia on your way to Bari.) In addition to touring the Sassi itself, visiting the ravine park directly opposite Matera and the Crypt of the Original Sin just south of Matera (30 mins by car) are unique sights well worth the minor effort to see. You might be able to work in seeing Cracco as well.

Just basically I would give yourselves a full 5 days in Basilicata.
sandralist is offline  
Old Mar 10th, 2014, 12:58 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 6,534
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
http://www.oasilipugravinadilaterza.it/
sandralist is offline  
Old Mar 10th, 2014, 03:47 PM
  #10  
kja
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 22,983
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
"flying ... out of Bari on the 20th. ... 1 night near the airport in Milan" - do you mean one night in Bari? There is an easy-to-use bus from Bari to the airport. As I recall, it leaves from near the train station.
kja is offline  
Old Mar 10th, 2014, 04:03 PM
  #11  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,137
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks ekscrunchy - for these suggestions and the previous one about where to stay near Altomonte (there are very few options in the area & I have emailed Agriturismo le Farnie.)

We do like windswept landscapes. The images on google maps are all wide angle with sweeping skies -- very appealing. I am a painter and it looks like an area that would interest me. We'll look closer tonight. I had no clear ideas about where to go in Puglia - I saw a place in Noci that looked nice. That was as far as I got.

And I miswrote when I said how many days I have. After 6 nights in the Cilento, I have another 6: 2 for a hill town (possibly Altomonte) and then another 4 nights. So we could spend 2/2/2 or 2 in Altomonte, 3 in Matera and 1 elsewhere. DH would like to spend 3 in the mountains for hiking but I'm a little unsure of that plan. It would interfere with my general plan to sketch, look at things and then drink a nice wine towards sunset.

sandralist - I think that's a really good idea. 5 in Basilicata! Or at least 4. If I can whittle the mountain hiking time down to 2 half-days and a night...
rosetravels is offline  
Old Mar 10th, 2014, 04:07 PM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,137
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
kja - we'll have an evening flight from Bari to Milan, stay near MXP, then fly to Seattle on the 21st. Since Matera is just over an hour from Bari I think we may make Matera our last overnight in the south. That way we can leave Matera, buy a lot of bread items in Altamura, return the car then fly Bari to Milan. Hopefully that makes more sense - it was a little confusing.
rosetravels is offline  
Old Mar 10th, 2014, 05:01 PM
  #13  
kja
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 22,983
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Oh, now I understand!

"Is it worth just spending a night and a day exploring Puglia?" -- it might be worth waiting until you can give Puglia it's due. Instead, you might consider adding even more time to Naples. If you do decide to spend some time in Puglia, you might want to stay in the part in/around Bari. Trani is well worth seeing, IMO, and Lecce is a gem.

"So we could spend ... 3 [nights] in Matera" -- I found 1.5 days in Matera sufficient for my needs. Whether you want an extra night there might depend on what time you expect to arrive there (or leave, if you end up shifting some time to Puglia at the end of your trip).
kja is offline  
Old Mar 10th, 2014, 06:41 PM
  #14  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,137
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Sandralist - the Gravina di Laterza looks really interesting, thanks!

ekscrunchy - sadly the B&B I was looking at in Chaia has a shared bathroom (just noticed) and the Palazzo is around $200 a night. It looks like we'll stay in the center!
rosetravels is offline  
Old Mar 11th, 2014, 07:56 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 22,222
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Rose that will be fine....there is more to do nearby in the center..I am forever blown away by the prices of hotels these days..your trip has the makings of a memorable one!!
ekscrunchy is offline  
Old Mar 11th, 2014, 03:29 PM
  #16  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,137
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
You have all been so helpful. We are zeroing in on this:
3 nights Naples
2 nights Castellabate
1 night Pisciotta (I'm inquiring about anchovy fishing at night, to see if that is possible)
4 nights Agriturismo at San Giovanni a Piro (I'm inquiring about anchovy fishing at night, to see if that is possible)
2 nights Altomonte at the Agriturismo there - we will do some more hiking and explore hill towns
1 night Bernalda (NOT at the Coppola palace!)
2 nights Matera
then we fly to Milan, stay a night, fly home. I'm making our final reservations now. It's a fair amount of moving around at the end for us - we often rent apartments for 4 days or more - but there is a lot we want to see and do!

Restaurant recommendations are welcome!
rosetravels is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
anconeus
Europe
7
Jun 10th, 2016 07:15 PM
ozlinz
Europe
5
May 21st, 2014 10:29 AM
cmndesign
Europe
37
Mar 25th, 2011 01:20 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 08:19 PM.