Palermo is the capital of the Italian island of Sicily. The 12th-century Palermo Cathedral houses royal tombs, while the huge neoclassical Teatro Massimo is known for opera performances. Also in the center are the Palazzo dei Normanni, a royal palace started in the 9th century, and the Cappella Palatina, with Byzantine mosaics. Busy markets include the central Ballarò street market and the Vucciria, near the port.
Palermo (Sicilian: Palermu; Latin: Panormus, from Greek: Πάνορμος, romanized: Pánormos) is a city of Southern Italy, the capital of both the autonomous region of Sicily and the Metropolitan City of Palermo. The city is noted for its history, culture, architecture and gastronomy, playing an important role throughout much of its existence; it is over 2,700 years old. Palermo is located in the northwest of the island of Sicily, right by the Gulf of Palermo in the Tyrrhenian Sea.
Being Sicily's administrative capital, Palermo is a centre for much of the region's finance, tourism and commerce. The city currently hosts an international airport, and Palermo's economic growth over the years has brought the opening of many new businesses. The economy mainly relies on tourism and services, but also has commerce, shipbuilding and agriculture. The port of Palermo, founded by the Phoenicians over 2,700 years ago, is, together with the port of Messina, the main port of Sicily. From here ferries link Palermo to Cagliari, Genoa, Livorno, Naples, Tunis and other cities and carry a total of almost 2 million passengers annually. It is also an important port for cruise ships. Palermo International Airport, known as Falcone-Borsellino Airport (formerly Punta Raisi Airport), is located west of Palermo. Falcone Borsellino Airport (IATA: PMO, ICAO: LICJ) (Italian: Aeroporto Falcone Borsellino) or simply Palermo Airport, formerly Punta Raisi Airport is located at Punta Raisi, 19 NM (35 km; 22 mi) west northwest of Palermo, the capital city of the Italian island of Sicily. It is the second airport of Sicily in terms of passengers after Catania-Fontanarossa Airport.
Palermo airport offering private jet charter flights and helicopter transfer services.
Tourism in Palermo, Italy
Palermo's oldest area borders Via Vittorio Emanuele, between the Norman palace and the cathedral, its two biggest tourist attractions. The city expanded to the harbor under the Arabs in the 9th to 11th centuries as capital of the Emirs of Sicily. After Sicily became an autonomous region in 1946, Palermo's harbor was enlarged and its industry expanded, but Palermo remains the poorest of Italy's provincial capitals. For ideas on the best things to see and do, refer to our list of the top tourist attractions in Palermo.
The east exterior of Palermo's cathedral (1453 Gothic-Catalan) retains the original Norman character: three apses, cross-over round arches, and curved parapets. In the 9th century, the Arabs built a palace (Palazzo dei Normanni) for their Emir, and under the Norman rulers and the Hohenstaufen Frederick II, the palace became even more splendid. Cappella Palatina court church of the Normans was consecrated in 1140; the mosaics in the chancel were probably completed in 1143, and those in the nave somewhat later. The port of Palermo, founded by the Phoenicians over 2,700 years ago, is, together with the port of Messina, the main port of Sicily.