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Palermo Top Destinations - Best Places and Tourist Attractions to Visit in Palermo
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Palermo Vacation and Travel Guide
Palermo is a city of Southern Italy, it is located in the northwest of the island of Sicily, right by the Gulf of Palermo in the Tyrrhenian Sea. It is the capital of both the autonomous region of Sicily and the Metropolitan City of Palermo. The city is noted for its history, culture, architecture and gastronomy, playing an important role throughout much of its existence; it is over 2,700 years old, founded in 734 BC by the Phoenicians as Ziz.
Palermo is surrounded by mountains, formed of calcar, which form a cirque around the city. Some districts of the city are divided by the mountains themselves. Historically, it was relatively difficult to reach the inner part of Sicily from the city because of the mounts. The tallest peak is La Pizzuta. However, historically, the most important mount is Monte Pellegrino, which is geographically separated from the rest of the range by a plain. The mount lies right in front of the Tyrrhenian Sea.
The Port of Palermo, founded by the Phoenicians over 2,700 years ago, is, together with the port of Messina, the main port of Sicily. From here ferries link Palermo to Cagliari, Genoa, Livorno, Naples, Tunis and other cities and carry a total of almost 2 million passengers annually. It is also an important port for cruise ships.
Palermo has at least two rings of city walls, many pieces of which still survive. The first ring surrounded the ancient core of the Phoenician city, the so called Palaeopolis located in the area east of Porta Nuova and the Neapolis. The eastern edge of the walled city was on Via Roma and the ancient port in the vicinity of Piazza Marina.
Tourism in Palermo
Palermo is Sicily's cultural, economic and touristic capital. It is a city rich in history, culture, art, music and food. Numerous tourists are attracted to the city for its good Mediterranean weather, its renowned gastronomy and restaurants, its Romanesque, Gothic and Baroque churches, palaces and buildings, and its nightlife and music.
Palermo currently is among the top tourist destinations in both Italy and Europe. It is the main seat of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Arab-Norman Palermo and the Cathedral Churches of Cefalù and Monreale. Roman Catholicism is highly important in Palermitano culture. The Patron Saint of Palermo is Santa Rosalia whose Feast Day is celebrated on 15 July. The area attracts significant numbers of tourists each year and is widely known for its colourful fruit, vegetable and fish markets at the heart of Palermo, known as Vucciria, Ballarò and Capo.
Palermo has a large architectural heritage and is notable for its many Norman buildings. Including Churches as Palermo Cathedral: Located at Corso Vittorio Emanuele. Cappella Palatina, the 12th century chapel of the Palazzo dei Normanni. San Giovanni dei Lebbrosi. San Giovanni degli Eremiti (St. John of the Hermit Order): Located near the Palazzo dei Normanni. Chiesa della Martorana: Also known as Santa Maria dell'Ammiraglio (St Mary of the Admiral), the church is annexed to the next-door church of San Cataldo and overlooks the Piazza Bellini in central Palermo. San Cataldo: Church, on the central Piazza Bellini, which is a good example of Norman architecture. There are also Palaces and Museums such as: Palazzo dei Normanni (the Norman Palace), one of the most beautiful Italian palaces and a notable example of Norman architecture. It houses the famous Cappella Palatina. Zisa (1160) and Cuba, magnificent castles/houses historically used by the kings of Palermo for hunting. Natoli Palace, of Vincenzo Natoli, Palazzo Chiaramonte, Palazzo Abatellis. The Regional Archeological Museum Antonio Salinas is one of the main museums of Italy: it includes numerous remains from Etruscan, Carthaginian, Roman and Hellenistic civilisations. It houses all the decorative remains from the Sicilian temples of Segesta and Selinunte. Palazzina Cinese, royal residence of the House of Bourbon Two Sicilies and location of the Ethnografic Museum of Sicily.
UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Palermo include the Palazzo Reale with the Cappella Palatina, the Chiesa di San Giovanni degli Eremiti, the Chiesa di Santa Maria dell’Ammiraglio, the Chiesa di San Cataldo, the Cattedrale di Palermo, the Palazzo della Zisa and the Ponte dell’Ammiraglio. This makes Italy the country with the most UNESCO world heritage sites, and Sicily the region hosting the most within Italy.
If you are planning to travel to Palermo, whether for business or tourism, in addition to the passport and visa, we recommend you to check the following information: International Airports, Airport security rules, Type of luggage allowed and weight limits, Most visited cities, Driving in Palermo, Electricity, Time Stripes, Business Hours, National Holidays, Weights and Measures, Commercial Practices and Etiquette Rules.
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Palermo International Airport (IATA: PMO, ICAO: LICJ), known as Falcone-Borsellino Airport (formerly Punta Raisi Airport), is located at Punta Raisi, 22 miles west northwest of Palermo. The airport's rail facility, known as Punta Raisi railway station, can be reached from Palermo Centrale, Palermo Notarbartolo and Palermo Francia railway stations.
Palermo–Boccadifalco Airport (ICAO: LICP), also known as Giuseppe and Francesco Notarbartolo Airport, is the second airport of the city. Located on the outskirts of the city, just before Monte Cuccio, it is one of the oldest airports in the country. Today it houses a Botanical garden and an ancient villa. The latter is used as the Officers' Club by the Italian Aeronautica Militare (Airforce).
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