Palermo, the regional capital of Sicily, is one of those cities with its own very distinct atmosphere.
Numerous tourists are attracted for its good Mediterranean weather, its famous gastronomy and restaurants, its Romanesque, Gothic and Baroque churches, palaces and buildings, and its nightlife and music. The grandeur of many Palermo’s wonderful palaces and churches in the centre gives way to popular areas whose way of life does not fully belong to the 21st Century. This is particularly true for the markets, whose Arabic origins are still evident today thanks to their colours, smells, noise, narrow labyrinthine streets, the splendid array of food and other goods on display. Some parts of the old town centre have remained untouched since they were bombed during the war.
In 2015, Arab-Norman Palermo and its neighbouring cathedrals were granted status as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This site is spread over thousands of hectares and includes nine monuments: the Zisa Palace, the Royal Palace and Palatine Chapel, Palermo Cathedral, the Palermitan Churches of San Giovanni degli Eremiti, Santa Maria dell’Ammiraglio and San Cataldo, the Admiral’s Bridge, and the cathedrals of Monreale and Cefalù.
Palermo was recently named “Capital of Culture 2018”.
Much further information can be found in the site of UNESCO-Palermo and in the tourism page of the municipality of Palermo. In particular, the latter provides useful information regarding to prices and opening times of the most important attractions.