SHORE EXCURSION: BACKCOUNTRY PALERMO TOUR: 8 Hours
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This trip will take you out of Palermo to visit some of the most beautiful towns and villages in the area – from Norman cathedrals to the former homes of Mafia bosses.
Includes: Our private tour of the area outside Palermo includes private “driving guide,” private door-to-door transportation, taxes, tolls and parking.
There are places in the countryside of Palermo sadly famous for events involving the Mafia and for having been the home of many Mafia bosses now locked-up in prison. This tour allows you to visit some of these sites and to admire them for their monuments and for their natural beauty.
This trip will begin with a lovely drive on a road overlooking the Conca D’Oro valley to reach the village of Monreale. You will visit the magnificent Duomo of Monreale, one of the great sights of Norman Sicily. Founded in 1172 by King William II, the Duomo flanks a Benedictine monastery. The cathedral’s interior glitters with mosaics designed by Sicilian and Byzantine artists.
You will then visit the tiny village of Ficuzza, located in a forested nature reserve, once the hunting grounds of the Bourbon King Ferdinand IV. You will visit the royal hunting lodge, built with the same comforts as his palace in Caserta, near Naples. A spectacular mountain called Rocca Busambra that towers over the park is now a nature sanctuary where eagles nest, though it was once a sanctuary for the Mafia to hide corpses of their victims.
Next you will move on to Corleone, a medieval town surrounded by emerald hills. After visiting this lovely town and Duomo and Prehistoric Museum, it will be hard to believe that it was once home to many terrible Mafia bosses, such as Totò Riina, who is now serving a multiple life-term prison sentence.
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