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5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
Very nice to visit town. You can walk right into the city, though on the way back - since we were "at the other end", we took a cab ride back. Like anywhere, beware of pickpockets - a local indicated that we should carry our ... Read More
Very nice to visit town. You can walk right into the city, though on the way back - since we were "at the other end", we took a cab ride back. Like anywhere, beware of pickpockets - a local indicated that we should carry our backpack on our stomach. In general, the people here are very friendly, though we were surprised at the high price of a coffee in a café that clearly wasn't on the tourist track. Read Less
38 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
PALERMO: Palermo has a gritty beauty and vitality that I always enjoy. Some of its main streets have been blocked off and are now pedestrian friendly. The ship docks at the maritime station near the ferry terminals. As you exit the ... Read More
PALERMO: Palermo has a gritty beauty and vitality that I always enjoy. Some of its main streets have been blocked off and are now pedestrian friendly. The ship docks at the maritime station near the ferry terminals. As you exit the port, pick up a city map at the TI in the small wood cabin near the gate. From there it is about 15 minutes to the Teatro Massimo, another 10 minutes to the Quattro Canti intersection, and another 15 minutes along Via V. Emanuele to Piazza Independenza where you will find the bus #389 to the fabulous Cattedrale Monreale. The best place to get on the bus is at its rest stop on the far (inland) side of the plaza across from the row of small gas stations. You are more likely to get a seat from there because when the bus starts up, it swings past the wall of the Palatine Chapel and quickly fills with tourists. Check the schedule on the internet -- I believe there is a convenient departure at 10 am and about every 30 minutes thereafter. The trip into the hills takes about 30 minutes and costs 1.80 euros each way, ticket purchased from the driver. The cathedral is near the end of the bus line and there is a gorgeous view of the entire Palermo city and harbor from the walk between the bus stop and the cathedral. Inside the cathedral are the most extensive and beautiful byzantine mosaics in the western Mediterranean. It is absolutely breathtaking. For a restroom there is a friendly cafe across the plaza, and there is a small park ideal for picnics if you pass the front of the cathedral on your left, and walk under two arches past the mini-post office. The return bus leaves from exactly the same spot where it dropped you off. Back in Palermo, the new tourist entrance to the Palatine Chapel is on Piazza del Parlamento, on the opposite side of the palace from Piazza Independenza and the former tourist entrance. If you are there Fri-Mon when parliament is not in session, you can see the royal palace at the same time that you see the chapel. The chapel is a mini-version of the Cattedrale Monreale, and just as breathtaking. The chapel can be a mob scene in high season, so go early or during the lunchtime lull. From there it is a leisurely walk back to the ship. A detour through the Palermo Cattedrale and the Ballaro street market is worthwhile. On your way back, near the Quattro Canti, is the too-sexy-for-prudes Pretoria Fountain. Near the fountain are some old Norman churches, useful because all the Norman sites have free wi-fi access. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
Just grabbed a taxi tour when we got off the ship late. Lucky to get a great english speaking guide that made our day
Just grabbed a taxi tour when we got off the ship late. Lucky to get a great english speaking guide that made our day Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
You need to ignore, the scruffy aspects to Palermo.........there are plenty of them. But there are plenty of outstanding aspects to the city and island. Over the centuries much wealth was in a small number of hands - so there are fabulous ... Read More
You need to ignore, the scruffy aspects to Palermo.........there are plenty of them. But there are plenty of outstanding aspects to the city and island. Over the centuries much wealth was in a small number of hands - so there are fabulous buildings, churches, theatres fountains and other features. Teatro Massimo opera house is a must! Again on this visit we found the people friendly, cafe/street food super, we admire their resilience coping with adversity. We had a great day in Palermo. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Excellent city full of architectural gems. Make sure to visit the Norman castle.
Excellent city full of architectural gems. Make sure to visit the Norman castle. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
The main city was not great but we then took a taxi to Mondello Beach and it was fantastic. Clear shallow water perfect for swimming. Excellent lunch with fresh swordfish and octopus.
The main city was not great but we then took a taxi to Mondello Beach and it was fantastic. Clear shallow water perfect for swimming. Excellent lunch with fresh swordfish and octopus. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2018
Hired a horse and carriage for an hour to take us round the sites. A very interesting city with a lot of history.
Hired a horse and carriage for an hour to take us round the sites. A very interesting city with a lot of history. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
We toured the castle and the cathedral, both very good. We rode in these vehicles that were like a motor cycle with 3 wheels with a bench seat in back, quite a bit of fun!
We toured the castle and the cathedral, both very good. We rode in these vehicles that were like a motor cycle with 3 wheels with a bench seat in back, quite a bit of fun! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2016
Explored Palermo on our own. You need about 4 hours to do it all. Lovely food, awesome atmosphere, friendly people. No crowds like in Rome.
Explored Palermo on our own. You need about 4 hours to do it all. Lovely food, awesome atmosphere, friendly people. No crowds like in Rome. Read Less
15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
Found it very interesting, especially the Norman Cathedral and Palace and also wandering around the historical Jewish quarter, finding street signs written in Hebrew, Arabic and Latin letters. Very easy to get around on one's own.
Found it very interesting, especially the Norman Cathedral and Palace and also wandering around the historical Jewish quarter, finding street signs written in Hebrew, Arabic and Latin letters. Very easy to get around on one's own. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
We used Sicily taxi service to go to cefalu. Go to CEFALU if you get a chance. It is so gorgeous. I arranged it on my ROLLCALL and saved everyone a lot of money and time although the driver was late which was agrevating.
We used Sicily taxi service to go to cefalu. Go to CEFALU if you get a chance. It is so gorgeous. I arranged it on my ROLLCALL and saved everyone a lot of money and time although the driver was late which was agrevating. Read Less

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