It is impossible to see everything that a city like Palermo has to offer in only four days.  There were a few things left on my “must-do” list — visiting the city’s Cathedral among the most important, at least for me.  We chose to take back roads to the Cathedral, instead of using the easy route, straight up Via Vittorio Emanuele.   I love taking side streets, as one never knows what one will discover.  And in this case, we ended up, once again, at a market!DSCN2953DSCN2957DSCN2956I have a pretty good sense of direction, but even so, it is easy to get lost once you begin walking these streets.   When that happens, the best thing to do is to simply give in to it all, and just keep on going.  DSCN2965DSCN2969.JPGBefore long, we found ourselves in a piazza, behind the Cathedral.  DSCN2971The area behind the church contains some old ancient ruins, which are blocked off from foot traffic.  DSCN2974While the ruins were interesting, the real attraction here is the church itself.  It is magnificent!  It is also quite large!  The architecture is stunning — a mixture of different styles, all of which seem to blend together seamlessly.  DSCN2976DSCN2977DSCN2980DSCN2984DSCN2994DSCN2997DSCN3002DSCN3009DSCN3004DSCN3016DSCN3020One enters the church through a side doorway.  In front of the doorway, there is a lovely park area surrounded by statues, and adorned with fountains and art.  DSCN3025DSCN3039DSCN3021Visiting the Cathedral is free of charge, but we decided to buy a ticket which would give us access to certain areas, such as the Treasury and the rooftop.  I highly recommend doing this!  DSCN3058Once you collect your ticket, you are led past the royal tombs of the Norman Kings, including Frederick II, Peter II of Aragon, William-Duke of Athens, as well as a few others.  DSCN3084You are then led up a stairway, which will take you to the rooftop of the church.  The view of the city, spread out before you, is spectacular!DSCN3088DSCN3090DSCN3094DSCN3107Once back inside, we explored a bit more of the church itself, including the beautiful crypt.  DSCN3113DSCN3116The tombs in the crypt date from the Roman, Byzantine, and Norman periods.  DSCN3117.JPGNext on my list was the Palazzo dei Normanni, with the Palatine Chapel, or Cappella Palatina.  This was nearby, and an easy walk, so off we went.DSCN3121Unfortunately for us, we were visiting on a weekday, during work hours, so we were only allowed to visit the Cappella Palatina.  Even so, the ticket price is well worth it, as the space is beautiful.  So beautiful, in fact, that I will make a point of returning when I visit the city again, and this time planning it for a weekend, so that I can tour the entire complex.DSCN3134DSCN3136DSCN3140DSCN3143DSCN3156We spent the rest of the afternoon, wandering the city.  DSCN3177DSCN3196DSCN3197DSCN3202DSCN3203DSCN3233DSCN3239DSCN3240DSCN3251DSCN3262DSCN3266DSCN3267DSCN3269DSCN3274DSCN3281DSCN3284DSCN3195DSCN3290.JPG

Next up: We begin our road trip with a drive towards our first destination, Trapani!



Note: This blog is written in English and Spanish, and the author takes no responsibility for the quality of any other translations which may appear.


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