The ancient jewel in the Mediterranean is a city of contrasts and controversy. Until today the manifold multicultural footprints tell about the various influences of the city and shaped it as a melting pot in Europe’s extreme South.

Founded by the Phoenicians as Ziz (‘flower’) in 734 BC and conquered by Carthaginian, Romans and Greeks, its history goes back to ancient times. Until today the manifold multicultural footprints tell us about the various influences of the city, which was a cultural melting pot in Europe’s extreme South. Whether it’s architectural heritage, food or local traditions, Palermo’s soul unifies diverse faces and languages. From arabesque charm to popular ferocity, you will discover inimitable situations in the streets of Palermo. The Sicilian capital is the political and cultural hotspot of the island. Around 1.2 million people live in the fifth most populated metropolitan area of Italy. In recent history, Palermo has had to fight with turbulent changes and social upheaval. Organized crime, rural depopulation and migration movements are topics Sicilians deal with every day. Maybe it’s also because of this reason that the spirit of the city draws distinctive lines, and creates a special atmosphere that has already inspired plenty of artists, writers and directors in their work. Every year numerous tourists visit the widely known monuments and colorful street markets in the popular neighborhoods Vucciria, Ballarò and Capo. And outside of the town, Palermo offers fascinating views. Surrounded by mountains and bounded by the Mediterranean Sea it is embedded by appealing landscapes and natural beauty.

Let's celebrate Palermo for what it really is: a laboratory for humanity, art and culture.

Leoluca Orlando, Mayor of Palermo


  • The International airport Falcone-Borsellino is located about 30 minutes west of the city center. It is dedicated to the two anti-mafia judges killed by the mafia in the early 1990s.
  • Other airports close to Palermo are Catania, Trapani and Combos
  • The port of Palermo, founded over 2,700 years ago, is on of the main ports in Italy. From here ferries link Palermo to Cagliari, Genoa, Livorno, Naples, Tunis and other cities as well as minor to the minor Sicilian islands such as Ustica and the Aeolians.
  • The main Sicilian highways A29, A20 and A19 lead to Palermo.
  • The Central railway station is connected to the national network.