The Park of the Rupestrian Churches is a top attraction for hikers and good walkers, but it really pays to go prepared and take the walk in this area seriously. One could spend several days hiking the area so it really pays to consult a guide or one of the official city tour offices before you set out to understand what you might like to see and how difficult a hike you would like to take. It's a vast park with many trails and although they are marked; its not that easy to follow them. A guide is recommended. Be aware that with the recent heavy rains the two small bridges have been washed away making it a bit tricky getting to the other side and to get around in the most easiest accessed area, along Via Madonna delle Virtu. With that said; its an amazing experience but be sure to wear good hiking boots, bring water, snack and sunscreen if you plan to stay out for awhile. A walking stick would be helpful as some of the declines are steep along with the "steps" but you won't find any in the park so come prepared!. If you can find a copy of "Matera-Itinerari nei Sassi e nel Parco della Murgia Materana it lays out several tours to take both in the city and the park-its very helpful, but hard to find.
Many of the frescoes have been badly damaged by graffiti-if you are reading this you probably aren't someone who defaces art, but its really sad to see what has happened in this lovely park. Try to encourage others not to touch what's left.
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