Palermo, the capital of the autonomous region of Sicily in southern Italy, is a charming and vibrant city. Located in the northwest of Sicily, the city is mostly known for its history, architecture, and Mediterranean gastronomy. After you start walking in the streets, you'll feel like you are walking in a giant museum.
The city has wonderful weather that makes it even more attractive. The city is full of life, bursting with cultural spaces featuring arts and music as well as historical sites. You cannot miss the Palazzo dei Normanni and Cappella Palatina, Palazzo Chiaramonte, Palermo Cathedral, San Giovanni degli Eremiti, San Cataldo's Church, Zisa, and Cuba. There are also the nice squares of the city, Quattro Canti -- four corners -- and Piazza Pretoria with its beautiful Fontana Pretoria. A nice walk through the botanical gardens -- Orto Botanico di Palermo -- is well worth it, as it is the biggest garden in Italy. A strange but interesting place is the Capuchin Catacombs, with mummified corpses. Outside the city you'll find Mount Pellegrino, with nice views from the city and the surrounding mountains and the sea in background.
The city is quite safe for tourists, however keep in mind that this is a city with a lot of corruption and a significant black market -- Palermo is also the capital of the Sicilian Mafia.
Palermo has an international airport that is the main connection to get here and a few maritime connections. By land there is a highway to take you to the east coast; it takes some time to drive around the island to and from Palermo, but it is a better option than the unpredictable local buses.
There is plenty of accommodation in Palermo, as the city is developing toward the tourism industry. Palermo's hostels are usually nice, well maintained, and you can expect friendly people to welcome you. The locals are always available for a short guided tour in the city if you have a motorbike. The hostels in Palermo are growing and you can expect good value for money in a really nice city.
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