This Castle, which was erected starting from the early XVI century for the will of Earl Giancarlo Tramontano, was not completed for his murder in 1515.Its original goal was to protect the town against enemies along its more exposed side. It is constituted by a city wall that would have included twelve towers of defence.
The main part, which dominates a hill in the outskirts of Matera, has two towers and a central mark, besides preserving the ditch and the entrance of the drawbridge.
Avtually it's not possible to visit the castle inside as there are some rebuilding works in progress.
If you have time (and a car) you could visit this town with a fine view and some interesting churches. We did not get the opportunity. The picture was taken from the tour-bus window when we were enroute to visit Metaponto. We are driving along the Brandano River valleey when the shot was made (S380).
Aliano is as off the beaten path as you can get in Italy. It is where he was"confined in isolation" by Mussolini in the mid 1930's for his anti-Fascist activities. His experiences and observations in the town led to his writing his great social work "Christ Stopped at Eboli" Aliano is called Gagliano in the book. If you have the resources , it makes Levi's report more alive and vital. We went. Our adventure is covered in pages and tips under Aliano, if you are interested. But read the book!. It is a masterpiece.
We thought we might explore the Sassi on our own. You can get a leaflet from the Tourist office. However we opted for a private guided tour and were so pleased as we learnt much more than we could ever have got from the leaflet. We also got into an underground chruch that is not open to the general public. The guides are official and can be booked through the hotel or tourist office.
The castle sits on the highest point in Matera and it peeps out at you from many vantage points. We saw it best when we climbed the street from our hotel on via Ridola to via Lucana . We had to do this almost daily because the former street is too narrow to accept tour buses. The castle is not open to the public so go no further. It is a monument to the socio-political history that shaped Matera. Tramontano was the Napolitan-Spanish overlord appointed count in 1497. He built the castle to protect himself but was killed by the Materans before completion in 1517.
Don't miss to visit the casa Grotta di vico Solitario...
it is an oldest tipical "sasso home" where you can watch how people lived until '60
Price to visit..1 €