Tips for visiting Palermo in a weekend
Palermo is one of the most beautiful cities in Italy because in the past it was crossed by phoenicians, greeks, romans, arabs, normans, french and spanish people. Every single passage has left permanent footprints, the most evident one is in architectures that live harmoniously side by side with arab cupolas, baroque churches, liberty palaces, neoclassical or eighteenth century theatres and arab markets. But what can you see in Palermo?
Palazzo dei Normanni and Cappella Palatina
In Parlamento square you can visit Palazzo dei Normanni or Palazzo Reale, Unesco heritage and, from 1947, place of sicilian regional assembly. The Palace is the most ancient royal building in Europe, house of the Kingdom of Sicily. Built by arabs, was enlarged by normans who made it their center of political power. Beside the Palace you can visit Cappella Palatina, the royal family church, in which is possible to admire amazing byzantine mosaics, considered the most beautiful of Sicily.
To see absolutely is Ballarò market. In this magical place, indeed, you can breathe the popular dimension of the city. Ballarò is the most ancient of the four historical markets (Vucciria, Capo, Lattarini and Ballarò). In the Middle Ages sold fine meat, fish and spices from the East. Today is an open sky market in which you can find local speciality, but not only. Here is possible to taste the world wide famous sicilian street-food. For example “pani ca meusa” or “sandwich with spleen”, a soft sesame loaf filled with small pieces of spleen, lung and trachea’s calf, boiled and cooked with pork fat in a copper pot. A very delicious thing to not loose!
In the historical center of Palermo is possible to visit Pretoria square, known as Vergogna’s (shame) square. Here you can find Vergogna’s fountain, called in this way from palermitans because of naked statues, located in front of the nunnery of Saint Christina. The square has been considered for long times corruption’s places. For this reason it tells that scandalised nuns remove genitals from statues. One in particular, represent a woman in an ambiguous relation with an horse. Legend tells that it’s the queen of Naples Giovanna d’Angiò, famous for hers unclear affairs.
Deserve a visit even nineteenth century Massimo Theatre, the most big lyric theatre in Italy and the third in Europe after Opera of Paris and Staatsoper of Wiene. Outside is characterized by a majestic entrance in neoclassical style, that remember greek temple, while inside amaze for the splendour of architectural decorations and for the perfect acoustic.
You have to see Palermo’s Cathedral: Santa Maria dell’Ammiraglio church, built in 1143 and known like as Martorana Church. Even though changes of XVI and XVII century, the plant serve the arab-norman style and amaze for the wonderful mosaic, most ancients of all region. Center of the mosaic’s decoration is the imagine of Christ surrounded by archangel, apostles, saints and prophets. Close cycle mosaics of the Old Testament.
Enjoy your travel towards Sicily with Seafy Wi-Fi!