Basilicata, once called Lucania, is one of the Italy's smallest regions and borders Campania to the West, Apulia (Puglia) to the North and East and Calabria to the South. The Tyrrhenian Sea touches the southwest of the region, whereas the Ionian Sea touches the southeast of the region. The territory is completely mountainous and hilly except for its Ionian strip. Each town hangs onto its local culture, customs and traditions tightly. The customs and gastronomy belong to its ancient traditions and the gorgeous landscape hides a wonderful historical heritage.
The regional capital, Potenza, destroyed by earthquakes in the centuries, today has become Basilicata's regional heart with its active cultural life and its University. Matera is famous especially for its Sassi (Rocks), the houses excavated into the cliff which were declared by UNESCO as belonging to the heritage of mankind.