Grottole, Italy is a small village unknown to most tourists. Airbnb is trying to change that.
The global vacation rental company is sponsoring an opportunity for four people to live in Grottole for three months this summer, according to an announcement from the company.
Called “The Italian Sabbatical,” the three-month-long experience, from June through August 2019, invites the lucky four to live in an rural home in the center of Grottole, a 300-person town with 600 empty homes. The “free” trip includes volunteering for Wonder Grottole, a local non-profit aiming to revitalize the southern Italian village, which is located in the province of Matera in the region of Basilicata.
Key to understanding Grottole’s history is its name: coming from the word “grotta,” meaning cave, it refers to the caves which have served as wine cellars for local residents for centuries, and where many families still produce their own wine today.
Italian language, gardening, and cooking lessons are a few activities you might find yourself doing as Airbnb’s guest, along with riding a classic Italian Ape Piaggio to explore Basilicata. Of course, you’ll kick back each evening to enjoy an aperitivo or two with the locals, perhaps at Bar Zolletta, a favorite café in the center of town.
Grottole even has an oil mill where the D’Aria family produces its own EVOO. Not a bad bunch to spend your summer with.
To become one of Grottole’s new temporary residents, apply here by Feb. 17, 2019.