Just a few kilometers from the Ionian Sea, Policoro is a gem that harmoniously combines two contrasting aspects: its rich historical and cultural heritage and its modern, contemporary vibe. The village is known for its pristine beaches, delicious food, and notable monuments.Policoro is not just a must-see on a tour of the Metapontino area’s small and large villages. With its hotels, bed and breakfasts, and various accommodation options, Policoro also serves as a “base camp” for visiting other characteristic localities in Basilicata. These are small gems in a natural necklace of tourist delights, each with unique aspects that cannot be found in more “celebrated” tourist spots.A tour of Policoro and the surrounding villages is perfect for those who enjoy relaxing, alternative stays, far from the hustle and bustle of typical beach and aperitif holidays. Let’s explore the most interesting nearby places to visit in a day, with a return to Policoro for a five-star overnight stay.

Craco, the Ghost Town

Craco, basilicataOur tour of Policoro and its surroundings begins with Craco, known as the “ghost town.” This highly evocative location, with its almost spectral atmosphere, has a population of just 600. The reason for this depopulation dates back to a terrible landslide in 1963 that forced most residents to leave.The highlight of Craco is the town itself: visitors can book a guided tour of the ghost town, which has become a location for famous films. Mysterious itineraries, silent streets, and houses that seem part of a parallel universe make the guided tour of spectral Craco a must for those wanting to discover another side of Basilicata.

Tursi, Home of Poetry

TursiTursi is a unique village with a special morphology and the birthplace of one of the greatest dialect poets. Stepping into Tursi offers an experience different from the classic tours of Matera’s Sassi.With just over 4,000 residents, Tursi is the hometown of poet Albino Pierro, multiple times a Nobel Prize nominee for Literature. Tursi’s center is divided into districts, each with special characteristics. The most famous, Rabatana, is the oldest and most fascinating due to its strategic position. Surrounded by three ditches making it impregnable, Rabatana is the historical heart of the town.

Valsinni, Wonder of the South

veduta ValsinniThe medieval beauty and authenticity of its inhabitants have earned Valsinni the prestigious Orange Flag from the Italian Touring Club, awarded to places with fewer than 15,000 residents.Why? It’s simple: just stroll through the town, breathe in the historical atmosphere, and visit the Valsinni Castle to appreciate why sometimes it’s worth taking intricate paths to enjoy the beauty of a place steeped in history and magnificence.Valsinni also hosts significant cultural and social events, some featuring the poet Isabella Morra, who was born and lived in this captivating location.

Colobraro, the Unnamed

No tour of Policoro and its neighboring villages is complete without visiting a town that turned an unfortunate reputation into a tourist attraction.Colobraro, dubbed “that town,” “the unnamed,” “the most unlucky town in Italy,” has many derogatory epithets. Yet, it boasts an almost esoteric, mystical charm. Colobraro is the Lucanian village that has best risen from the ashes of a dismal reputation. This is thanks to its residents, who, irritated but undeterred by an urban legend rooted in the 1940s, have reclaimed their town.