23 Fabulous Issues to do in Palermo Italy, Scorching Sicilian Capital

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There are such a lot of cool issues to do in Palermo Italy! Palermo is the most important metropolis within the autonomous area of Sicily, with a inhabitants of about 650,000. It sits within the sunshine, surrounded by seashores and nestled in by tall cliffs.

And what a metropolis it’s. Palermo is stuffed with loud and passionate individuals, attractive and weird spiritual structure, some questionable driving, and completely incredible (and sometimes uncommon) meals.

I not too long ago spent every week in Palermo — for much longer than most guests spend right here. And let me let you know, this time was very effectively spent!

There are a lot of misconceptions about Palermo — particularly regarding security. Even if vacationers usually affiliate Palermo with mafia risks, Palermo is a protected metropolis to go to, about as protected as any main European metropolis. (You can read more on Palermo safety below.)

I additionally anticipated Palermo to be simply as brash and loud as Naples — however it wasn’t that method in any respect. Palermo truly felt pretty low-key so far as Italian cities go — not practically as wild as Naples or Rome. Go determine!

Palermo can be extraordinarily good worth for cash. I stay in Prague, which has a fame of an affordable metropolis (although it’s gotten a lot pricier lately). Palermo is considerably cheaper than Prague, particularly with regards to meals and lodging. Massive arancine for a euro? That’s lunch!

Palermo will not be as well-known as Florence or Rome — however this underrated metropolis is effectively value a go to.

This publish was printed in February 2023.

A single statue of an angel on a piazza in Palermo, in front of city roofs and mountains in the distance.

Issues to Do in Palermo Italy

You’ll discover on my record of issues to do in Palermo has quite a lot of church buildings and quite a lot of meals. Truthfully, that’s what Palermo does greatest!

The Arab-Norman structure has earned UNESCO World Heritage Designation for numerous church buildings within the metropolis — all value visiting.

And the meals! From hearty pastas and wild avenue meals to delectable pastries, Palermo is without doubt one of the most scrumptious cities I’ve ever visited.

What are good issues to do in Palermo with youngsters?

Youngsters visiting Palermo will love all of the pastry shops and taking part in within the sand at Mondello Beach.

What are the perfect day journeys from Palermo Italy?

My high suggestions for day journeys from Palermo are the seashore city of Cefalù, the romantic hill city of Erice, and the Greek ruins of Segesta.

Life-changing panzerotti kick off your Palermo meals tour!

Go on a Palermo Avenue Meals Tour with Streaty

If there’s something you must do in your FIRST day in Palermo, it’s go on a meals tour. Whereas I like to recommend doing that in every single place, it’s particularly necessary to take action in Sicily and ESPECIALLY ESPECIALLY so in Palermo as a result of there are such a lot of distinctive meals right here that you just gained’t know to order!

Streaty is a Sicilian-owned firm that gives a couple of totally different meals excursions in Palermo. On these excursions you’ll have a enjoyable, pleasant information introducing you to a number of the better-known Sicilian specialties (like cannoli and pasta con le sarde) and a few extra wild stuff (insalata musso and donkey mortadella!).

I went on the Classic Sicilian Food & Wine Tour and had SUCH an excellent time! This tour is beneficiant with each the meals and wine (OMG a lot wine) and also you go to quite a lot of cool eating places and get to sit down down, which doesn’t all the time occur on a strolling tour.

After this tour, you’ll have a number of eating places and spots you’ll need to go to once more!

A street market in Sicily with people selling food items.
Bollaro Market in Palermo Italy

Palermo Markets

Visiting the road markets is an effective way to get to know Italian cities on an area degree — and that’s very true for Palermo. Palermo could be very a lot a market metropolis, and there are three value visiting: Ballaro, Capo, and Vucciria, all positioned pretty shut to one another.

If you happen to solely have time to go to one market, make it Ballaro. That is the most important market in Palermo and wandering round it feels SO Sicilian — distributors shouting to you to strive their cheeses, meats, contemporary juices, and varied fried meals cooked on the spot, like arancine (not arancini — Western Sicily spells it otherwise than Japanese Sicily). It’s wild and welcoming and a full sensory expertise!

Capo is one other good market, positioned near Teatro Massimo. There are many nice produce stalls right here and fairly a little bit of avenue meals choices right here, from sfincione pizza to freshly fried panelle chickpea fritters.

Vucciria has lengthy been one of many high markets in Palermo, however lately the market stalls are dwindling and it’s turning extra into an aperitivo or nightlife vacation spot. (More on that below.) It’s nonetheless value visiting, and you’ll find avenue distributors turning out only-in-Palermo eats like stigghiola, veal or lamb intestines wrapped round a spring onion and barbecued.

A chapel covered with curving ceilings topped with golden mosaics and images of Christ and the apostles.

Palatine Chapel

As I write this piece, I’m conscious {that a} metropolis like Palermo can provide you main church/UNESCO fatigue. However I visited the Palatine Chapel (Cappella Palatina) and it was so excellent, it stuffed me with pleasure.

This chapel is positioned on the second ground of the Norman Palace (Palazzo dei Normanni, or Palazzo Reale/Royal Palace). The constructing appears good, however nothing too thrilling.

And then you definately get to the chapel. Put together to be blown away. Gold rains down from each angle. Like the opposite UNESCO World Heritage Websites in Palermo, it’s all in regards to the mixing of religions and cultures, and it feels extra like a Byzantine spiritual monument with Islamic influences within the geometric tile patterns.

The mosaics listed below are significantly spectacular, and I used to be shocked at how most of the patterns regarded like traditional American quilt patterns I affiliate with Americana. What a shock to see them in Sicily.

Admission to go to the chapel, the palace, and the outside gardens is 11 EUR ($12 USD).

A person on a bicycle standing in front of a magnificent street corner filled with statues and a fountain.

Take within the View from Quattro Canti

Palermo’s most well-known intersection, named after its 4 corners, is positioned at Corso Vittorio Emanuele and Through Maqueda. This space was constructed within the Baroque type between 1608 and 1620, at a time when Palermo was beneath Spanish rule.

Right here the intricate 4 corners divide 4 conventional Palermo neighborhoods — La Loggia to the northeast, Kalsa to the southeast, Albergheria to the southwest, and Seralcadio/Capo to the northwest.

Moreover, every nook has art work dedicated to one of many Spanish Kings of Sicily, in addition to its patron saint and fountain depicting one of many 4 seasons.

This intersection is a good spot for pictures and capturing some actually Palermitan avenue scenes!

A hand holding an espresso martini in front of a rooftop view of a white and yellow church on a piazza, blue sky behind it.

Have Cocktails on Prime of La Rinascente

La Rinascente is an upscale division retailer in downtown Palermo, positioned proper on Piazza San Domenico. It’s value a pop in to see what’s on the market — I ended up shopping for a coat and bought a 20% low cost only for signing up for his or her electronic mail record — however the actual attraction is the roof.

There’s a rooftop restaurant with a beautiful view over the piazza beneath, and catches all of the sunshine. We requested for espresso and so they solely serve espresso downstairs — so we requested for espresso martinis. What an ideal loophole!

I can’t converse to the restaurant, however it makes an ideal place to go for a break from vacationer points of interest the place you’ll be able to take pleasure in a stupendous view.

And in the event you’re searching for cocktail bars at evening, there are heaps in Palermo’s metropolis middle. We significantly cherished one referred to as Terzo Tempo.

A sand-colored theater with big Greek columns and a staircase in front. A horse-drawn carriage is on the road in front of it.

Teatro Massimo

Palermo’s most well-known theater, Teatro Massimo, is the most important opera home in Italy and a significant landmark in popular culture. Have you ever seen The Godfather: Half III? A sure very well-known and tragic scene was shot on the steps of the opera home. (No, I can’t spoil a 30+ year-old movie.)

It’s an extremely grand constructing, and a guided tour of the theater is without doubt one of the hottest issues to do in Palermo. Would you somewhat see an opera? Great. You will get opera tickets in Palermo for a lot lower than what you’d pay in Florence or Milan.

(Whereas a scene happened inside Teatro Massimo in HBO’s The White Lotus, it was truly filmed within the theater in Catania. Don’t count on it to look the identical!)

A sand-colored cathedral topped with a blue-green dome, with lots of crenellation on the outside and three big porticoes on the side.

Go to the Palermo Cathedral

Each Italian metropolis has its personal Duomo, or central cathedral, and in some ways it usually represents town’s persona. The Cattedrale di Palermo actually does, with its wild mishmash of architectural types, representing its centuries of being conquered and reconquered.

The cathedral, authentic constructed within the twelfth century, is considered one of Palermo’s many UNESCO World Heritage Websites described as Arab-Norman Palermo. On this cathedral you will have influences from Muslim, Byzantine, Jewish, Latin, Lombard, and French cultures.

Curiously, the cathedral of Palermo has a zodiac on its ground — uncommon in Italian cathedrals! And the spectacular structure of the surface options every part from three-tiered porticoes to Baroque cupolas.

A Baroque fountain on an Italian piazza filled with lots of statues of muse-like women. In front of it some teenagers in winter coats take a selfie.

Fontana Pretoria

Near Quattro Canti is the Fontana Pretoria, essentially the most spectacular fountain in a metropolis of spectacular fountains. This fountain was truly initially constructed in Florence and dropped at Palermo’s Piazza Pretoria in 1574 — a painstaking course of that concerned 644 items.

The fountain options the Twelve Olympians — the Greek gods who dwelled on Mount Olympus, together with Zeus, Aphrodite, Apollo, Poseidon (who seems to be a ton like Florence’s notorious Neptune, doesn’t he?).

The sq. was as soon as known as the Sq. of Disgrace (Piazza della Vergogna) because of the many nude our bodies on the fountain.

A simple bakery with pastries in cases and a prominent crucifix on the wall. An older woman leans down closely to look at the pastries.

Have Pastries in a Monastery

Palermo is brimming with incredible bakeries and sweets outlets. However you’ll be able to’t high the ambiance of I Segreti del Chiostro, a bakery positioned inside Santa Caterina d’Alessandria Monastery, positioned very near Fontana Pretoria and Quattro Canti.

Stroll in and head upstairs. It can possible be busy with a line, and also you’ll be given a quantity. (You would possibly need to search for the interpretation of your quantity in Italian as a result of they are going to be studying it out loud.) After they name your quantity, you place your order and so they’ll offer you your pastries and a receipt to pay on the money register.

This bakery is stuffed with scrumptious, luxurious pastries. Intricately embellished cassata, big cannoli the scale of your forearm, and dozens extra baked items you’ve by no means heard of. They’re all labeled with their identify and components in each Italian and English, an enormous novelty in Sicily.

When you’ve purchased your pastry and maybe an espresso or macchiato, head out to the courtyard to sit down by the fountain and revel in your afternoon deal with. You may as well tour the monastery in the event you’d like.

A beach in winter with big frothy waves and a kitesurfer surfing across them. Pastel-colored square beach buildings in the background.
Mondello Seashore on a windy winter day

Go to Mondello Seashore

Mondello Seashore — Spiaggia Mondello — is a stupendous white sand seashore with unbelievably clear water, positioned inside Palermo’s metropolis limits. It’s a few 35-minute experience from central Palermo on the 806 bus.

The water right here is so turquoise in summer time, you gained’t imagine that is in the midst of a busy metropolis! In between your swimming and sunbathing, seize a granita or fritto misto at one of many close by eating places, and take a stroll across the neighborhood to benefit from the lovely villas.

Palermitans love the seashore, so count on Mondello to be tremendous crowded in the summertime months. That being mentioned, Sicilians have a tendency to go to the seashore throughout “correct” summer time — from mid-June by way of mid-September, regardless that it’s nonetheless swimming climate effectively into October. Shoulder season seashore visits may be nice right here.

Within the winter months, it will likely be simply you, the dog-walkers, and the kitesurfers.

A very small chapel. The top half of the walls is covered with intricate sculpture work of angels and demons, all in white stucco.

Oratorio del SS Rosario in Santa Cita

Along with its many Baroque church buildings, Palermo is stuffed with small oratories which have their very own artworks. One positively value testing is Oratorio del SS Rosario, which is uniquely carved from white stucco.

Palermitan Giacomo Serpotta sculpted this room, and the outcomes actually take your breath away. Angels and cherubs fly on excessive; the condemned and war-stricken undergo beneath. There are partitions dedicated to the Joyful Mysteries, Sorrowful Mysteries, and Superb Mysteries.

This place was featured on the BBC’s sequence Sicily Unpacked, however I don’t usually see it talked about in Palermo journey guides. It’s a disgrace; it’s a very cool place that deserves extra visits.

One other close by oratorio value visiting is Oratorio del SS Rosario in San Domenico, simply down the road and behind the cathedral of San Domenico.

A three-story gate. The bottom is all stone blocks and has a narrow opening, but the top has a balcony, a mosaic roof, and intricately cut porticoes.

Porta Nuova

You’ll see the Porta Nuova proper across the nook from the Royal Palace, a brief distance from the Duomo. This was the unique metropolis gate resulting in Cassaro, the oldest avenue in Palermo, and was constructed within the sixteenth century.

You’ll be able to’t go up the gate, however it’s a beautiful spot to seize a fast picture when visiting the UNESCO-listed church buildings of Palermo.

A 30-something man sitting on a chair, repairing a puppet that looks like a knight in armor. A tall puppet is standing behind him, a bit creepily to be honest.

See a Sicilian Puppet Present

Puppet exhibits have lengthy been a cultural custom in Sicily basically and Palermo specifically. Palermo’s Opera dei Pupi, a conventional puppet theater, was added to UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity record in 2001.

These puppet exhibits started within the late nineteenth century, depicting medieval chivalric romances and Renaissance poems. At the moment they’re nonetheless occurring, although the exhibits are sometimes simplified for a extra international viewers.

Check out the Opera dei Pupi site to see what exhibits are on throughout your go to. And in the event you’d somewhat simply get a fast glimpse of the puppets, take a stroll down Through Bara All’Olivella, near Teatro Massimo, to see the puppet-makers in motion.

A square stone church topped with unusual red domes.

Go to San Cataldo and La Martorana

In Palermo’s metropolis middle, you’ll discover two distinctive church buildings aspect by aspect: the Church of San Cataldo and La Martorana (also called Santa Maria dell’Ammiraglio). Each are value visiting.

La Martorana is one other visible stunner with sensational Byzantine mosaics on the partitions and an intricate Baroque marble altar.

San Cataldo is topped with purple domes, a remnant of the Arab affect right here. The within feels extra historic by comparability — plain stone partitions, although a mosaic on the ground.

People sitting at street side restaurants, drinking spritzes and eating fried food.

Get pleasure from Nightlife in La Vucciria

La Vucciria was as soon as one of the well-known markets in Palermo, immortalized within the La Vucciria portray by Renata Guttuso. Over time, the market stalls have develop into fewer and fewer, however that’s okay — the market has reinvented itself.

As of late, La Vucciria has develop into extra of a vacation spot for nightlife. When aperitivo hour hits, head to Through Maccherronai, the slender avenue connecting La Vucciria and Piazza San Domenico, and select one of many institutions for some drinks and meals.

Right here you’ll be able to seize a desk exterior, order a super-strong spritz, and order a plate or two of fried Sicilian specialties — pannele, crocche, possibly some fried or grilled squid. This isn’t going to be your full dinner — however it’s the right place to get your night began in Palermo!

A courtyard in winter with elegant stone columns circling a green courtyard with trees.

San Giovanni degli Eremiti

One other of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Arab Norman Palermo websites is San Giovanni degli Eremiti (St. John of the Hermits), a beautiful spot to go to a stone’s throw from the Norman Palace and Palatine Chapel. You’ll discover the purple domes topping this monastic church earlier than you stroll in.

This place appears like a secret backyard in the midst of town, from the second you stroll in and are surrounded by lush greenery. Head upstairs to see the chapel and the courtyard. There’s additionally an Arab cistern on web site.

The courtyard, for my part, is the spotlight of this place, surrounded by columns and feeling because it it’s caught in time.

A row of creepy skeletons wearing clothes and lined up standing in the catacombs.
The creepy, extremely effectively preserved Capuchin Catacombs, through Shutterstock.

Go to the Capuchin Monastery Catacombs

You may need heard of Rome’s catacombs, however how about Palermo’s? The Capuchin Catacombs are house to greater than 8,000 our bodies and it’s simply one of the macabre issues to do in Palermo.

You would possibly consider catacombs as being a spot for the poor, however this last resting place was truly one thing restricted to Palermo’s most privileged from the sixteenth to nineteenth centuries. The mummification course of was groundbreaking on the time, and to this present day you’ll be able to see the human-ness of those our bodies of their expressions.

Please know that there are mummified kids on show in these catacombs. If seeing that may upset you, don’t go. I selected to not go as a result of I used to be devastated by the kid mummies of Guanajuato, Mexico. Moreover, pictures should not permitted right here.

A church atop a hill overlooking a city surrounded by mountains.
The view atop Mount Pellegrino, through Shutterstock.

Monte Pellegrino

In search of a straightforward escape into nature? Head to Monte Pellegrino. This mountain (actually, extra of a big hill) overlooks Mondello Seashore and the Tyrrhenian Sea. It’s lined with mountain climbing trails and incredible scenic overlooks. Not unhealthy for nonetheless being throughout the metropolis of Palermo!

On the mountain is Sanctuaria di Santa Rosalia, a church constructed straight into the rocky mountainside, full with a cave-like chapel.

You’ll be able to take the 812 bus from Politeama to the highest of Monte Pellegrino, or book a bike tour with a local triathlete.

A church with tall columns along the aisles, a wooden ceilings, and gold mosaics on all the walls.

Go to Monreale and Its Cathedral

Monreale is a city positioned up within the hills south of Palermo. (You’ll be able to count on it to be a couple of levels cooler right here, so it’s an ideal place to go to on a sizzling day!)

The Cathedral of Monreale is a UNESCO World Heritage Website and is thought for showcasing the convergence between Norman and Byzantine structure. The ceiling and partitions are studded with gorgeous mosaics with a lot gold.

The golden inside evokes the Byzantine chapels of Central and Japanese Europe, whereas the cloister seems to be like one thing straight out of Andalusia or North Africa. That’s Sicily for you!

To get to Monreale, take the 389P bus from Piazza Independienza. It’s the final cease. Make sure to have a look at Google Maps carefully — many “different” bus routes they provide embody a “12 minute biking” addition to the itinerary.

A pastry case filled with dozens of different brightly colored Sicilian pastries.
The pastry case at Antica Caffe Biondo. Get the inexperienced factor — cassata!

Eat All of the Sicilian Pastries

I’ve been to all 20 areas of Italy, and I feel that Sicily has the perfect pastries and desserts in your entire nation. That’s not a small declare.

Certain, you’ve heard of cannoli earlier than (singular: cannolo), and also you’ll discover them throughout Sicily. These attractive fried pastry shells stuffed with ricotta cream and chocolate chips, topped with candied fruit — they’re incredible! (And addicting.)

However don’t cease at cannoli. Two different desserts you must strive are cassata (a Sicilian cake with brilliant inexperienced marzipan wrapping round layers of sponge cake and cream) and torta setteveli (a seven-layer cake standard in Palermo that layers chocolate and hazelnuts and was featured as a technical problem on The Nice British Bake-Off).

Past that? Strive something that appears good! One evening I ended up with a molten lemon cake that was nothing wanting transcendent.

One good factor is that many bakeries have mini pastries together with regular-sized ones — good for simply having a bit little bit of one thing candy, or attempting numerous totally different goodies.

Two of the extra high-end bakeries in Palermo that I particularly loved are Antico Caffe Biondo (they’d the BEST cassata!) and Antico Caffe Spinnato.

A long-distance view over the hills surrounding Palermo, covered with homes, mountains and ocean in the distance.

Day Journeys from Palermo

My high recommendation is to be reasonable about what you’ll be able to see with a day journey from Palermo. No, you’ll be able to’t day journey to Catania or Siracusa or the Aeolian Islands; it’s too far. Stick with the encircling space — which is all Western Sicily. And stick with a 2.5-hour drive.

That being mentioned, there are such a lot of cool day journeys from Palermo you can make with an inexpensive journey from town, whether or not you need a seashore resort, hill cities, Greek ruins, or a stupendous place to hike.

Listed below are a number of the greatest locations to go to on a day journey from Palermo.

A gorgeous small town by the sea with sand-colored buildings, a few church towers, and rising cliffs behind it.
Acknowledge this view from The White Lotus? Through Shutterstock.

Cefalù

Cefalù is arguably essentially the most well-known seaside village in Sicily. And you will have seen it already — whereas The White Lotus‘s Sicilian resort was positioned in Taormina, the entire seashore scenes had been truly shot in Cefalù!

You are able to do a bit right here — lie on the seashore and go for a swim — or do a bit extra. The previous city is an exceedingly photogenic place to wander; you can too hike up La Rocca for views over the panorama.

Cefalù, like most Sicilian resort cities, is hopping throughout excessive season and very quiet exterior this time interval. I personally wouldn’t go to Cefalù sooner than Could or later than October; an excessive amount of is shut down.

Cefalù is a one-hour journey from Palermo by prepare, or you can join a tour from Palermo. Many Cefalù excursions from Palermo additionally embody Castelbuono, a stupendous hill city shut by.

A couple standing on a stone fortress in Erice, looking over hills leading to the ocean.
Unbelievable views from the citadel in Erice!

Erice

Suppose the one Italian hill cities are in Tuscany? Suppose once more! Erice is a fabulous hill city and makes an ideal day journey from Palermo.

It’s a protracted, switchbacky journey as much as Erice, and when you’re on the high close to the citadel, you’ll be rewarded with gorgeous views over the countryside. The streets are steep and superbly cobblestoned. It feels so totally different from the coastal elements of Sicily, and particularly Palermo!

Hold a watch out for the very pleasant cats of Erice, a few of whom would possibly be part of you for a stroll by way of the city.

Erice is a 1 hour and 15 minute drive from Palermo, or you’ll be able to take the cable automobile from Trapani (seasonal). You may as well e-book a tour from Palermo, like this tour to Erice, Segesta, and the Salt Pans of Trapani, which covers quite a lot of cool spots in a single day.

The view from a stone amphitheater perched high on a hill, hills and the ocean in the distance.
I can’t consider a Greek theater with a greater view than this.

Segesta

If you happen to’re a fan of ruins, you’ll need to go to the traditional metropolis of Segesta whereas in Palermo. These Greek ruins are one of the necessary websites in Sicily, and so they’re additionally superbly preserved and enjoyable to go to. I’m not an enormous ruins particular person, however I cherished Segesta.

There are two essential websites right here: a temple and a theater. The theater has spectacular views throughout the hilly Sicilian countryside, all the way in which to the Gulf of Castellamare.

The temple is straightforward to go to from the car parking zone, however the theater is positioned a 1.3-km journey up a steep hill. They’ve a shuttle bus going up and down the hill. (I selected the stroll earlier than realizing it was completely uphill. Nonetheless feeling it in my butt in the present day!)

Segesta is in a distant location with out public transportation entry, so your greatest guess is to drive (45 minutes) or e-book a tour. You’ll be able to e-book this tour to Erice, Segesta, and the Salt Pans of Trapani.

Needless to say the UNESCO-listed ruins of Agrigento are a two-hour drive away, so Segesta is way nearer.

A market in Palermo, with lots of street art on the buildings and people eating at tables.

Is Palermo Secure?

You may be questioning whether or not Palermo is protected to go to. Sadly, individuals usually assume that Palermo is an unsafe metropolis, however that is SO removed from the reality.

Palermo is simply as protected to go to as any main metropolis in Italy (and even perhaps safer than cities like Paris and Barcelona, the place vacationers are persistently focused by pickpockets and rip-off artists).

Each Sicily and Palermo have a historical past with the mafia, which casts a protracted shadow (and the Godfather films positively don’t assist), however locals are by no means focused by the mafia. And the mafia basically has far much less affect right here than it did 30 years in the past.

Don’t joke in regards to the mafia while you’re in Sicily. It’s not humorous right here. Our Streaty meals tour information Angelo, who is identical age as me, advised us about how traumatizing it was when two judges had been murdered in Palermo in 1992. He was eight. Think about if that occurred in your individual group while you had been a toddler.

Needless to say issues have modified lately — each in Sicily basically and Palermo particularly. In Anthony Bourdain’s episode of Elements Unknown, he talks about AddioPizzo, a company that helps Palermo eating places that refuse to pay kickbacks to the mafia.

I requested locals about this, and so they advised me that the mafia nearly by no means seems to be for kickbacks from Palermo eating places anymore. The Elements Unknown episode aired in 2013. That’s the distinction a decade could make.

To be taught extra about this, you’ll be able to take an Anti-Mafia Tour in Palermo.

In brief, keep protected in Palermo the way in which you do in some other metropolis. Keep watch over your belongings. Solely take out the amount of money you want for the day. Don’t get too drunk. If you happen to’re not comfy strolling at evening, take an Uber.

Neighborhood-wise, I’d advocate being additional cautious across the prepare station at evening. (Which is just about customary for any European metropolis.) And as you’ll be able to see additional beneath, I like to recommend staying within the Politeama neighborhood.

Learn Extra: Prime 10 Journey Security Ideas for Girls

People walking on the sidewalk in Palermo as a bus drives by.

Learn how to Get to Palermo, Italy

If you happen to’re flying into Italy, Palermo Airport has nonstop flights from locations throughout Italy, in addition to some in different European nations.

The easiest way to get from the airport into Palermo is to leap in one of many shared taxis, which value eight EUR ($9 USD) per particular person. Nonetheless, I don’t advocate taking the shared taxi again — we needed to drive everywhere in the metropolis choosing different individuals up, and it might have been nerve-wracking if we had been late for a flight!

I like to recommend renting a automobile in the event you’re exploring Sicily in depth, however in the event you don’t have a automobile, prepare is greatest. Palermo is one hour from Cefalù and three hours from Catania or Messina. Buses go to different native locations.

As for getting round Palermo, there’s a community of buses that run across the metropolis and Google Maps is nice for determining the schedules. You should purchase bus tickets at a Tabbachi (search for the large T on shops) — sadly, you’ll be able to’t purchase transit tickets through an app simply but.

Uber is on the market in Palermo, and there are taxis as effectively.

People walking on a pedestrianized street in Palermo, in front of a green tree cut into the shape of a cube.
Winter sunshine is sweet in Palermo!

Finest Time to Go to Palermo, Italy

Palermo is usually marketed as a year-round vacation spot, and I get it. Summers are scorching and wild, whereas winters are sunny and gentle. (Then once more, my latest February go to was marred by a chilly spell, a reminder that Sicilian buildings are poorly heated.)

So sure — you’ll be able to go to Palermo year-round, however you would possibly need to be ready for a colder winter than you would possibly count on. I wore a thick sweater day by day!

The best possible time to go to Palermo, and Sicily? Go for Could or September. These months carry heat, summer-like warmth with out the crush of the summer time crowds. Spring and fall basically are fabulous occasions to go to Sicily.

A tall skinny building on a narrow corner of Palermo.

The place to Keep in Palermo, Italy

The perfect neighborhood to remain in Palermo is Politeama. This neighborhood is the arguably the perfect neighborhood within the metropolis, with quick access to designer outlets and good eating places — however it doesn’t really feel snobby in any respect. Fairly the alternative, truly.

Palermo is a really inexpensive metropolis, and splurging on the nicest neighborhood doesn’t even really feel like splurging.

The Politeama neighborhood is near the motion however not within the middle of the motion, which I actually like. It’s walkable to town middle and all of the sights. And it’s near numerous bus routes.

I stayed in this one-bedroom Palermo apartment throughout my go to and actually loved it. An amazing house, a superb location, a low value. Keep there in the event you’d like!

Prime-Rated Accommodations in Palermo (all in Politeama)

  • Finest Luxurious Lodge in Palermo: Grand Hotel Wagner (Charlie did an inspection of this place and it’s RIDICULOUSLY opulent)
  • Finest Mid-Vary Lodge in Palermo: Hotel Politeama (gorgeous views)
  • Finest Funds Lodge in Palermo: Castelnuovo Rooms (shared bogs will prevent a TON)

Find deals on Palermo hotels here.

A yellow, orange, and green villa with a little turret on top, surrounded by palm trees.

Journey Insurance coverage for Italy

One final observe — it’s completely important to have journey insurance coverage earlier than touring to Palermo, or wherever in Sicily. If you happen to get sick or injured in your journey, in the event you get robbed, or even when it’s a must to be flown house for extra care, journey insurance coverage will shield you from monetary break. I’ve used World Nomads for journeys to Italy.

Journey insurance coverage will enable you to in your hour of want in the event you come down with appendicitis in Palermo, or journey and break an ankle whereas climbing into the Cappella Palatina, or in case your flights get canceled, you may get lodging and new flights paid for.

As all the time, be sure you learn your coverage rigorously and ensure it’s a match for you. See what World Nomads covers right here.

A narrow street in Palermo with flags and hand-lettered signs hanging between the buildings.

Is Palermo Value It?

Hell sure, Palermo is completely value it! In my view, Palermo doesn’t get the eye it deserves. So many individuals go to for a day and think about Palermo checked off.

However this can be a metropolis that very a lot deserves your time. I do know I’ll be spending much more time in Palermo in my future!

Extra on Sicily:

Cool Locations in Southern Italy:

Planning a Journey to Italy:

Have you ever been to Palermo? What do you advocate? Share away!

23 Fabulous Things to Do in Palermo, Italy, Sicily’s Sizzling Capital