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Cripta del Peccato Originale

Contrada Pietrapenta, Matera, Italy
+393205350910
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Ranked #3 of 34 attractions in Matera
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Type: Churches/ Cathedrals
Owner description: Through a quiet path, among vineyards and wheat fields, you reach the Crypt of Original Sin. This exceptional cave church represents one of the oldest... more » Owner description: Through a quiet path, among vineyards and wheat fields, you reach the Crypt of Original Sin. This exceptional cave church represents one of the oldest examples of the rupestrian art of Southern Italy. Its extraordinary cycle of frescoes, made five hundred years before Giotto, illustrates scenes from the Old and New Testament. For its theological value and artistic pictorial compendium, the cave-church has been called the 'Sistine Chapel' of the rupestrian wall painting. « less
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163 reviews from our community

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English first
San Francisco, California
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
13 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2014

In 2013 I began my visit to Matera with a stop outside the city to visit the "Crypt of the Original Sin". This little chapel carved into stone has been described as the Sistine Chapel of the south. Just a few kilometers from Matera, in one of the ravines that run through the plateau of the Murgia, is one of... More

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Top Contributor
146 reviews 146 reviews
17 attraction reviews
361 helpful votes 361 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2014

I asked our guide Green Italy Tours to include this stop en route to Lecce. Very interesting and such well preserved frescoes in the cave. Well organized presentation as you sit inside...it is done in different languages different times and reservation is required. It was worth the time.

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Lucca, Italy
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
7 attraction reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2013

Situated a few kilometres from Matera, this crypt was built inside a natural cave overlooking the limestone cliff of the ravine crossing the Murgia plateau. It contains many fascinating rupestrians wall painting dating back to the 9th century. A. D. Those interesting frescoes representing scenes from the Old and New Testament are quite well preserved and recently restored. I strongly... More

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MEXICO08
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 13, 2013

Dear Traveller, after having discovered that just 1% of the Matera annual turist visit the Cripta (Chiesa dei 100 Santi) I decided to write this brief and friendly review. It is my second time there within 2 years. The first time I had a special visit organized by some local politicians to show the Cripta to a famous economist from... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 5
Rome, Italy
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
4 attraction reviews
74 helpful votes 74 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 26, 2013

Do not miss these 8th century frescoes in a cave. The entire valley is dotted with these and one can, in fact, find cave churches throughout this part of Puglia. This was the high point of my trip to Matera, although I would have gladly skipped the guided tour and the corny music. They should just open the wall, let... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 3
Bathurst, Australia
Top Contributor
423 reviews 423 reviews
293 attraction reviews
263 helpful votes 263 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2013

Getting here without my own transport was a challenge, and required a cab ride which ate into my tight budget, but it was well worth the effort. Enthusiastic guide with good command of English. In theory there is supposed to be a minimum number of visitors for a tour to run, but I found on arrival, on a Sunday morning,... More

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Castle Rock, Colorado, United States
Top Contributor
74 reviews 74 reviews
18 attraction reviews
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2013

We were privileged to have Antonio, a young engineer, as our tour guide. Antonio volunteers his time. His passion for the history of the crypt makes the experience even better.

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London, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
3 attraction reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 20, 2013

Very interesting and well preserved frescoes; guided tours at different times in different languages; ours (in English) was good if helpful, if rather loquacious

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new york
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
5 attraction reviews
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2013

To think, in the 9th century, monks entered this natural cave, coated the walls with stucco and painted amazing frescos, which to this day are intact! The site is 8 kilometers outside of Matera, but worth all the trouble! Just phone them and they will arrange it. The sight is accessed through a farm and along the cliffs of a... More

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New York City
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
8 attraction reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 29, 2012

This is definitely worth a visit, but you have to reserve in advance. It is a guided tour, especially because the site itself is quite off the beaten track. The guide was an engineer and extremely knowledgable and interested in the historic, artistic and archeological significance of the site.

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