Imagine yourself in a hidden and secret place, a place in which the only sounds are the chirping of the cicadas and the whisper of the wind. The first time in Aliano, you will be captured by its quiet and by the amazing view of its badlands.
Carlo Levi wrote its masterpiece “Cristo si è fermato a Eboli” (Christ Stopped at Eboli) in this very village. In 1935, Mussolini’s fascist government exiled the writer in this village, hidden in the heart of Basilicata. Born in Turin and unaccustomed to the rural life in Aliano, Carlo Levi eventually fell in love with this place, expressing the will to be buried here.
A MYSTERIOUS VILLAGE, HIDDEN IN THE BADLANDS
Aliano is the perfect choice for those who want to visit a place beyond space and time: the ghost town of Craco (enlisted since 2010 among the cultural heritage sites of the World Monument Founf) is located not far from here. Aliano has also been the location of some of the most touching scenes of Mel Gibson’s The Passion. We strongly invite you to visit Aliano, maybe after reading Levi’s masterpiece, and to retrace with him the beautiful the story written among these ancient houses..
THREE GOOD REASONS TO VISIT ALIANO AND THE GHOST TOWN OF CRACO
1. THE HERITAGE OF CARLO LEVI
Carlo Levi’s exile in Aliano lasted two years (1935 and 1936), and this event positively marked the village. The Carlo Levi Thematic Park will invite the visitors to discover the novel with guided tours of Aliano and historical representations, using the village as a stage.
It is also possible to visit the Carlo Levi Historic Museum and the house in which the writer lived during his exile. Another very interesting place is the civic museum of rural culture, which allows visitors to take a glance at the recent past of this region.
2. "MONACHICCHI", JINXS AND A GHOST TOWN
Witches, crones, jinxes and naughty sprites (called “monachicchi”) wander the silent alleys of Aliano. To keep them away from the houses, the people from Aliano used to build their front doors in the shape of human faces. The so-called “Casa del malocchio” (Jinx house) remains as an evidence of this habit.
You should of course visit Craco, too. This ghost town can be visited by booking a guided tour. You will climb steep stairways, amidst abandoned alleys and silent houses, to reach the remains of a church, a noble’s mansion and the looking tower. From the top of the tower, you can enjoy the breathtaking panorama of the plain and the badlands.
3. THE BADLANDS
Aliano is situated in an area in which badlands are the most prominent features, with their impressive clay pinnacles. Some have compared this place to Arizona’s badlands for the presence of dunes, canyons and the color of the land, ranging from gray to ochre.
Foto Craco: Marco Lovisco