Palermo Port is located at the northern part of Sicily. Many cruise ships dock at its harbor. Palermo is a historical city and was once part of the Roman Empire. According to scholars, the city was founded by the Greeks. Palermo in the past has been invaded and conquered a number of times by the Arabs, French, Normans and Spaniards. Today, the city is home to 1 million people.
The city is known for its lively and vibrant handicraft industry which is influenced by Sicilian arts and culture. For traditional metal-works and pottery, you can see many great finds in Via Calderai. One highly sought-after item is the city’s marionettes. The city also has a puppet- making tradition and exquisite dolls are sold in the Corso Vittorio Emanuele. The Vucciria Market is the place to go if you’re looking for ambience and local flavor. The place is buzzing with activity in the early morning. If you’re into haute couture and high class fashion, you’re sure to see great items in Via Liberta. Well-known fashion brands like Louis Vuitton and Cartier have outlets here.
Things to See
Religious relics and historical architecture are well preserved in this city. Examples of beautiful old churches that one can visit in Palermo are the Palermo Cathedral, La Mortorana, San Cataldo, and St. John of the Hermits. Also open to public viewing are the city’s wide collection of ancient religious relics and jewelry, including crucifixes decked with jewels, medieval manuscripts and chalices.
One of the most visited baroque churches in Palermo is Chiesa del Gesu which was built in the mid to late 1500s. Other popular tourist destinations are monasteries, palaces, castles, art galleries and museums. You can also schedule a tour to the city’s many vineyards and wine houses.
Restaurants and Bars
Because of its close proximity to the sea, it’s no wonder to find that most Palermo dishes are based around seafood. Be sure to check out highly rated seafood restaurants like Le Tre Lampare, Da Totuccio, L'Ancora and La Baraccia. Other equally good restaurants serving Sicilian fare are Villa Virginia, Al Pagliaio, Ai Vecchietti de Minchiapititto and La Fenice.
Palermo like many Italian cities, also make great-tasting pizza and pasta. A lot of local restaurants serve these traditional delicious Italian fares. The Aboriginal Bar not only has a fully-stocked bar but also computer stations where patrons can surf the Internet for a fee. For vegetarians, Il Giardino dei Melograni offers non-meat dishes with an Italian twist. Culinary hounds swear by the hotel restaurants found in Villa Igiea and the Astoria Palace. Pasticerria Massaro offers many gastronomical options to clients and serves among others, coffee, pastries and gelatos.
One restaurant that offers a scenic view of the city is American Bar in the Grand Albergo Sole. If you want to sample Palermo’s local Marsala wine, drop by Antica Caffe Spinnato, which is also known for its excellent gelato.