Altamura history and findings – b&b il claustro

Altamura is a city 45 km far from Bari and 18 km from Matera. It rises on a hill of the Murge Plateau and it is part of the National Park of Alta Murgia. The name Altamura means HIGH WALLS because the city, in the past, was surrounded by two big circles of megalithic walls. The city was founded by Frederick II SWABIA that chooses Altamura not only for the strategic position but even for the healthy air. Actually while Frederick II was coming back from the crusade in the Holy land finds some soldiers of his army on the hill of Altamura. Soldiers told to the Emperor to be miraculously healed by malaria. This is one of the reasons of Frederick’s will to built a magnificent Cathedral (splendid example of Apulian Romanesque), to thanks the Virgin Mary. Since The Emperor declared Altamura “free from every jurisdictions”, the city had its maximum moment of glory. He also promulgated an edict: ten year of tax exemption that encouraged the arrival of many people like Jews, Greeks and Arabian and Latins. From this moment on, the old city was featured by its famous Claustri. Just few kilometers far from the city it is possible to see the Pulo of Altamura. It is a huge doline in the ground. It is a karst cavity measuring 550 m in diameter and 92 m deep. In the areas adjacent to the sinkhole, in a deep cave has been discovered an important find: extend the MAN OF ALTAMURA. It is a skeleton almost intact (unique) of Homo arcaicus which dated back more than 300.000 years ago. It goes back a few years ago the discovery of a paleontologist: in a area about 5 km from Altamura, were found thousands of dinousar’s footprints that lived in the Late Cretaceous, or about 80 million years ago.
Altamura is above all… the city of the bread. The first and only bread receiving the P.D.O mark of European Community, a bread that contains all the culture and history of our city, which economy was always based on grain trade.