Recent Searches
Clear
When are you traveling?
Select Dates
Price
$0
$500+
Duration
Time of Day
RatingClear
Specials

How to Spend 1 Day in Palermo

How to Spend 1 Day in Palermo

Sicily’s unique history has molded its culture, cuisine, and even language to be worlds apart from mainland Italy. No city illustrates this better than Palermo, with its mix of Norman, Moorish, and baroque architecture; bazaar-like street markets; and Arab-influenced dialect and dishes. Here’s how to experience the city in just one day.

Morning: Culture and Cuisine

Begin exploring in Palermo’s old town and join a walking, bike, or Segway tour to marvel at the historic center’s architecture, much of it part of the Arab-Norman monuments dating from the 12th century and listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Admire the Byzantine mosaics in the Royal Palace and Palatine Chapel, Palermo Cathedral, and La Martorana, as well as the baroque Four Corners (Quattro Canti) square, the Renaissance “fountain of shame” in Piazza Pretoria, and the neoclassical Teatro Massimo. Gourmands can opt for a food and market tour that leavens the city’s architecture with its street food, stopping at the outdoor markets for tastings.

Afternoon: Adventures in the Kitchen or Countryside

Food is a fundamental pillar of Palermo’s culture, so take a deep dive into its cuisine with a local cooking class. Shop for ingredients at a traditional open-air market, and then learn the secrets of preparing dishes that blend Spanish, Greek, and Arab elements before feasting on the food you’ve made, paired with Sicilian wines. Alternatively, set off from Palermo to take in the architectural treasures in the surrounding towns, namely the imposing UNESCO-listed Norman cathedrals of Monreale or Cefalù, both exquisitely decorated in Byzantine mosaics and considered among Sicily’s most important cultural treasures.

Night: City Life

Palermo is Sicily’s version of the “city that never sleeps,” with a lively nightlife that stretches from the outdoor markets and their popular street food stands to the trendy restaurants and clubs in neighborhoods like Lo Capo, Castellammare, and Albergaria. Stroll along the waterfront in La Marina to rub elbows with the locals during the evening “passeggiata” walk, relax over a sampling of Sicilian wine paired with artisan cheeses, or sit down to a traditional home-cooked meal with a local cook featuring classics like panzerotti, pasta alla norma, and crostata.

Read More
Filter
Select Dates
Today
Tomorrow
Free Cancellation:Get a full refund up to 24 hours in advance on most experiences.See Details

5 Tours and Activities

Sort by: Featured
Palermo Street Food Walking Tour
Likely to Sell OutLikely to Sell Out

Palermo Street Food Walking Tour

star-5
738
Snack your way through the streets of Palermo on this Sicilian food tour. Explore backstreet markets and food stalls specializing in local delicacies like stuffed rice balls and chickpea fritters as your guide fills you in on local history, culture. Plus, this small-group tour has a limited number of participants for a more personalized experience.
More
  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$64.44
From
$64.44
Taking safety measures

Palermo Catacombs and Monreale Half-day Tour

Palermo Catacombs and Monreale Half-day Tour

star-4.5
22
Discover two of Palermo’s most distinctive landmarks on this immersive, private tour. Set off from your accommodation—hotel pickup and drop-off are included—and venture first to the Capuchin Catacombs: a macabre destination home to thousands of mummified bodies, many of them priests. Next, discover the UNESCO-listed Cathedral of Monreale, famous for its fusion of Norman and Arabic architecture. A break for Sicilian coffee and nibbles is also included.
More
  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$107.39
Price varies by group size
From
$107.39
Price varies by group size

Palermo Old Town Bike Tour

Palermo Old Town Bike Tour

star-5
85
Capital of Sicily, Palermo is a city of rich history and impressive architecture—with hidden secrets round every corner. On this bike tour, hop onto the saddle, escape the tourist trail with your guide, and see sides of Palermo many visitors miss. Spin along peaceful back-streets and through pretty squares, sample Sicilian street food, and experience life in Palermo away from the hustle and bustle of the tourist traps.
More
  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$52.50
Price varies by group size
From
$52.50
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Palermo No Mafia walking tour: discover the Anti-mafia culture in Sicily

Palermo No Mafia walking tour: discover the Anti-mafia culture in Sicily

star-5
170
Explore Palermo’s key sights on foot on this walking tour of the Sicilian capital. Meet your guide in a convenient location in central Palermo, and set off. Visit popular landmarks ranging from the Palermo Cathedral and Palazzo Pretorio to the Massimo Theater. Learn about the city’s long entanglement with the mafia, and meet the shopkeepers and other individuals who have pioneered a local anti-mafia movement.
More
  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$36.99
From
$36.99

Palermo and Monreale Tour

Palermo and Monreale Tour

star-4
9
Spend a day exploring the best of Palermo and the glories of Monreale with this combination day trip. See the top attractions in the old town of the Sicilian capital of Palermo, including the Teatro Massimo, Cathedral, and Politeama Theater. Next, travel up to the hilltop town of Monreale to tour the famous Duomo. Marvel at the golden mosaics covering the Duomo's interior.
More
  • 4 hours
From
$64.51
From
$64.51