visit the Royal Palace, or...
visit the Royal Palace, or Norman Palace with the Palatine Chappel and the Cattedral
you can see:
- Porta nuova
- Diocesan Museum
- Cathedral Treasury
- Palazzo Castrone Santa Ninfa
- Sicilian Regional Library
- Chiesa del Santissimo Salvatore
- Quattro Canti di Città
- Chiesa di San Giuseppe dei Teatìni
- Piazza Pretoria
- Senatorial Palace
- baroque Chiesa di Santa Caterina
- Chiesa di Santa Marìa dell'Ammiraglio (also know as la Martorana)
- Chiesa di San Cataldo
- Chiesa di San Matteo
- Chiesa di San Giovanni degli Eremiti
- Chiesa del Gesù and Casa Professa (today used as the City Library)
- Chiesa dello Spasimo
- Palazzo Patella - Abatelis
- a lively street market of Vuccirìra
- Chiesa di San Domenico
- Oratorio del Rosario di San Domenico
- Massimo Theatre
- Politeama Theatre
- Palazzo della Zisa
- La Cuba
- Chinese Palace
- Sanctuary of Santa Rosalia (the patron of the city)
Excursion from Palermo to:
- the Madonie and the Nebrodi
Dining on the balcony
I do not remeber the name of this little restaurant in Via Vittorio Emanuele.
Bur it was wonderful to have dinner just out on the balcony overhanging the street.
So when you are walking, remember to rise your nose up, you can make some funny discoveries.
San Vito lo Capo: a gem!
Sicily is an island, and Palermo is the main city of it: you are not allowed to miss the beaches, but..... Take care of pollution: unfortunately, waters may be severely polluted in the areas close by Palermo, as an example, the famous Mondello beach is no more open for swimming.
I suggest you drive all the way to Riserva dello Zingaro natural conservation area, or even to San Vito lo Capo (100 km west of Palermo), where the sea and the sand are almost Caribbean style.
Palermo's main market, the Mercato di Ballarò, can be found in the Albergheria quarter, just a couple of streets in from Via Marqueda. The oldest, and the biggest, of Palermo's markets, locals have been shopping at the stalls set up in this warren of narrow streets ever since the Saracens first set up the souk here, 11 centuries ago, and there's still more than a whiff of the souk about the market today. Churches may have replaced mosques but there's no mistaking the origins of this lively scene - cross the Mediterranean to Tripoli, Cairo or Damascus and you'll find the scene is pretty much the same.
All the life and colour of a typical Sicilian market is here in spades - mountains of wonderful produce, amazing displays of freshly caught fish, great wheels of cheese, more varieties of olives and salamis than you thought it possible to find. The smells are great too - pungent herbs, fragrant peaches, newly baked bread. Clothes, household goods, shoes, toys and more all add to the colours and the mix.
Morning's the best time to visit any market, Ballarò's no exception. Everything's closed on Sunday.
Before you leave, take a good look at the Chiesa del Carmine (Our Lady of Carmel) on the Piazza del Carmine, the centre of the market. Look up to see how the colourful tiled dome is borne on the shoulders of four giant Atlases.
The grand capital of superb Sicily
"Great city and gateway to western Sicily"
For each of my two trips to Sicily, I flew to Palermo and loved walking around and visiting this great regional capital. It has a rare and rich history, with a well-preserved legacy, whilst also offering an impression of a modern and messy city, like all southern Italy.