Palermo tours and excursions
Sightseeing passes are available for hop-on, hop-off bus tours of the city. Tickets are valid for unlimited use across both routes for 24 hours. Starting from the Teatro Politeama, tours take in the Teatro Massimo, Santa Maria della Catena, San Giovanni degli Eremiti, the Palazzo Reale and Cappella Palatina, the Cattedrale and the Duomo di Monreale. Tickets can be purchased on the bus and multi-lingual commentary is available.Tel: +39 91 589 429.
Sicilia & D'intorni offers various guided cultural tours lasting half a day (morning or afternoon), which focus on Arab, Norman, baroque and 17th-centrury Palermo. They also run tours of Castle of Caccamo.Tel: +39 91 812 1312.
Perched high up in the valley is the village of Monreale. People flock here to see the Duomo (built under William II after the Norman conquest of Sicily), whose beautiful gold mosaics depict scenes from the Bible. From the imposing Christ Pantocrator, which dominates the apse area, to the narratives of the Creation in the nave, or the scenes from the life of Christ adorning the walls of the aisles and the transept, the mosaics cover every single square inch of the inside of the cathedral.Website: http://www.monrealeduomo.it
A town with steep streets, beaches and a towering Norman cathedral built at the request of Roger II, Cefalù is dwarfed by a huge rock face, La Rocca. Easily reached by train or coach, it is located 75km (46 miles) from Palermo. Many of the restaurants and shops run along Corso Ruggero, the main street. The Museo Mandralisca is home to Antonello da Messina's Portrait of an Unknown Man. For views over the town and sea, hike up to the Tempio di Diana, a 5th-century temple.Website: http://www.cefalu.it