Craco Earthquake Ghost Town in Italy

Craco is in the heel of Italy, where the central mountain spine terminates just above the ‘boot’. It used to be a wealthy trading centre with a mighty castle and a huge basilica. After the 1980 earthquake, the residents packed up and moved away. You can visit Craco earthquake ghost town on the road between Stigliano and Pisticci, and wander past romantic ruins.

Craco earthquake ghost town in Italy
Ghost Town: Photo on Flickr by Patrizio Cuscito / CC BY 2.0

Craco Earthquake Ghost Town in Italy

Windows still gape from the ruined castle, monastery, and church. Today, there is no brightly coloured washing hanging the balconies though. The pubs have fallen silent. There is no more laughter from the students. Many people died in the disaster. The question arises, why did they build a town in an earthquake zone some time in the 8th Century?

Craco earthquake ghost town: Window from Nothing Italy
Window from Nothing: Photo on Flickr by Luca Roccotiello / CC BY-SA 2.0

Window from Nothing

The reason turned into a death wish 1,200 years later. Craco is on a rock formation that commands the surrounding hills and valleys. The bastion of knowledge, civilization, and faith withstood everything the Moorish and Barbarian armies hurled at it. The only force it could not withstand was the Irpinia earthquake. Craco stood no chance, as its walls cracked and crumbled, and tumbled down the mountainside.

Craco Earthquake Ghost Town in Italy: Strategic Position
Strategic Position: Photo on Flickr by Martin de Lusenet / CC BY 2.0

Strategic Position

Craco earthquake ghost town is a popular tourist attraction but we recommend an experienced travel guide. It has also become a regular movie set. I suppose there is always a possibility of spotting your favourite film star here. When you visit, there are small hotels and pensions nearby offering traditional accommodations and local cuisine.

Craco Earthquake Ghost Town in Italy: Movie Set
Movie Set: Photo on Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0

About Richard Farrell

Richard FarrellI tripped over a shrinking bank balance and fell into the writing gig unintentionally. This was after I escaped the corporate world and searched in vain for ways to become rich on the internet by doing nothing. Despite the fact that writing is no recipe for wealth, I rather enjoy it. I will deny I am obsessed with it when I have the time.My base is Umtentweni in South Africa on the Kwazulu-Natal South Coast (30.7167° S, 30.4667° E). I work from home where I ponder on the future of the planet, and what lies beyond in the great hereafter. Sometimes I step out of my computer into the silent riverine forests, and empty golden beaches for which the area is renowned.

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