Abruzzi N Park
Given to its location on the sunny island of Sicily, Palermo has been a popular destination for decades
The main square, Piazza Pretoria, constitutes the heart of the city, around which a labyrinth of streets spans the whole city-centre.
Many of the city's most attractive monuments can be found in the historical centre, among which the Palermo Cathedral stands out as a grand architectural recounting of the city's history, as it was built and re-built during different periods. The Royal Palace and the church of Santa Maria Assunta can be found close to each other, in the same area.
The Capuchin Catacombs are amongst Palermo's most unusual offerings and contain literally thousands of mummified bodies, while the Fontana Pretoria dominates the Piazza Pretoria and is known for its nude stone statues. Another important landmark in Palermo is the Porta Nuova gateway, which dates back to the 16th century and features enormous Hermes columns. Those looking for the best views across this part of Sicily should take a climb up the Monte Pellegrino, an imposing mountain that provides a scenic backdrop to parts of the city itself.
Palermo is a good place if you are interested in museums and historical information. You can learn more about the city's past at the Museo Archeologico Regionale (Palermo Archaeological Museum), where exhibits include a number of Greek and Roman treasures. The Museo Etnografico Pitrè (Museum of Ethnography) is also worth a look, as is the Galleria Regionale, where many masterpieces from as far back as medieval times are displayed.
Close to many quality tourist attractions, Palermo is surrounded by picture-postcard Sicilian
countryside. Mount Etna is especially close and this active volcano is a good place for a summer
hike, and is even used by cross-country skiers during the winter months. The Riviera-style resort of
Mondello is also nearby and is a must for those looking for luxury, pampering and sandy beaches.
Directly south, Monreale is best known for its beautiful cathedral and views across Palermo itself.