After the Amalfi coast we ventured east to Matera - a town with caves dug all through the hillside. It was a maze of paths and buildings above and below ground.
The cathedral was also fairly impressive. But what we really wanted to see were the churches that had been built inside the caves.
Initially we tried to find our way without a map, but soon realised that we would become hopelessly lost. The first cave church we went to was allegedly the best. It was also closed. We thought it might have been closed for lunch, as were many places, but the lady in the information centre just said that it was closed in a definite way.
You can stare at the view for a long time and always see new things.
This is the view from a hillside that contained two cave churches. We could only find one of them. A kid had lost his family around here and looked very scared, but someone helped him.
Upon leaving, a child saw Yannick and grabbed him around his legs, possibly mistaking him for their mum. I laughed.
After Matera was a small town called Alberobello. This place had buildings with distinctive roofs, called trulli (singular trullo). I thought they looked quite like Hagrid's hut from Harry Potter. Not sure what the painted symbols mean. Most of the trulli had been turned into souvenir shops, and one of them said something like "Come Inside to Find Out What the Symbols Mean" but it was a bit creepy and we figured you'd have to pay so we skipped that.
We stayed in a campground just on the outskirts of town. The receptionist informed us that there was a beer festival that night, and we ended up employing our earplugs. Judging from the noise, they had barely stopped to sleep before resuming the festivities in the early morning when us sober folk were stirring. Hard partiers, those Alberobellians.
Very close by was Locorotondo which we saw in the evening.
The historic quarter was nice to look at. Here are some other tourists looking down an alley.
This is that alley.