Gravina in Puglia is on the border with Basilicata, just to the west of Altamura. It can be reached by the small railway line from Bari which also serves Altamura and Matera.
Originally established by the ancient Greeks, then ruled by the Romans, the town was on the Via Appia on the route to Tarentum.
The town is set within dramatic scenery, with the Cattedrale Santa Maria Assunta perched on the edge of a deep ravine, offering superb views across the landscape. When the Visigoths and other barbarians rampaged through the towns and villages of the area in the post-Roman centuries, the inhabitants were forced to take refuge in the ravine, and then further underground by creating dwellings and other spaces out of the tufo by adding to the existing caves. Tunnels, cellars, granaries, acqueducts, churches, barns and drainage systems all exist under the town today. Tours of the subterranean world are available, head to Via Meucci near Piazza Notar Domenico. Tours are available on weekends and during holidays, but can be organised during the week by request.