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Report 2005: Naples & Sicily: Warmly Welcomes Travelers

By teezee from US, Spring 2012

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Page 5 of 13: Sicily - Cefalu

We picked up our car at the train station in Palermo, saving ourselves a journey to the airport, and we used Maggiore (which rents a variety of providers including Alamo and National) and they were very helpful. The cab ride from the port to the train station with our bags was around €15 and the cab managed four of us with luggage comfortably. Maggiore also allowed us to return the car to the airport with no additional charge which worked out well at the end of our journey. Our initial destination was Siracusa and we would end our trip in Palermo.

We stopped in Cefalu on the way to the house in Siracusa. The Norman Cathedral was breathtaking in its combination of architectural severity and magnificent mosaics, joining east and west architecturally and in the stunning craftsmanship. Cefalu is charming but be aware that the best way to see it is to park in a lot by the beach and either hoof it or take a cab to the top. You cannot drive within centro historic Cefalu and it is, of course, straight up hill (be advised that everything in Sicily is straight up-hill and then perilously straight down hill). A cab will take four people from the beach to the cathedral and wait for you for an hour for about €25. Parking was only €3 and this approach allowed us to explore Cefalu without too much pain. As the Cathedral was our major destination, we were reasonably happy with the two hour stop and went on our way to Siracusa.

Tips for older travelers:

  • In Cefalu and in a number of Sicilian cities, park in the center, preferably in a monitored lot if you have luggage in your car, and take a cab to “centro historico.”
  • The most expensive of these was in Cefalu where the cab waited for us for an hour as we explored the Cathedral and surrounds and that was €25 shared by four people and the cheapest was in Erice (€3).
  • The parking lots typically are €3 – €5 for several hours but your car will be safe and it is well worth it.

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