Cefalù, seaside attractions, places to visit and suggested hotels.

Jewel of Sicily

A charming village bathed by blue waters and dominated by a fortress: it is Cefalù, a jewel of Sicily. Easy to reach and easy to love passionately!

Address: Cefalù
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Cefalù is a charming Norman village located on the shores of a blue sea and dominated by a famous fortress known simply as… the Rocca.

Easily accessible by train, it is the perfect destination for a day trip from Palermo, for a holiday of a few days or as a base to explore the nearby Aeolian Islands, but once you arrive in Cefalù, you will not want to leave.

The picturesque fishing village offers an ideal setting for romantic walks, while the interesting archaeological area will happily keep lovers of history and culture engaged.

The city beach, often crowded during the day, empties towards evening becoming a perfect place to admire beautiful sunsets. Prepare your camera, wait for the right moment and bring home the image of a charming village illuminated by the soft pink light of the setting sun, after which treat yourself to a delicious dinner in one of the typical restaurants of Cefalù.

What to see in Cefalù

The image of Cefalù is closely linked to the imposing Rocca, which rises 270 meters above sea level, dominating the entire landscape. Seen from above, it is a breathtaking sight, but it is also one of the best viewpoints to admire the village and the sea.

A majestic staircase known as the Salita Saraceni will take you almost to the top in about half an hour of effort, but the reward will be abundant once you arrive, as in addition to the beauty of the view you can admire the remains of an ancient Temple of Diana.

Worth a visit is the small Museo Mandralisca, a private collection that includes an art gallery, a collection of Greek and Arabic ceramics, a collection of coins and one of the richest malacological collections in Europe, as well as precious objects belonging to the Mandralisca family. The highlight of the collection is the famous “Portrait of a Man” by Antonello da Messina.

Take a look at the Medieval Wash House on the Cefalino River, a stream that, according to legend, formed from the tears of a nymph, regretting killing the lover who had betrayed her.

Other noteworthy buildings include the Sanctuary of Gibilmanna in the homonymous hamlet and the Bastion of Capo Marchiafava, a polygonal bulwark dating back to the seventeenth century, with the tip facing the sea, which can be admired in the historic village.

Cefalù Cathedral

One of the main attractions of Cefalù is the Cathedral, also known as the Cathedral of the Transfiguration: an authentic masterpiece of Arab-Norman architecture, comparable without fear to other famous buildings such as the Palatine Chapel and the Cathedral of Monreale.

It is a basilica with a Latin cross plan with three naves, embellished with pink granite and Arabic style elements. The two imposing twin towers soar towards the blue sky of Cefalù outside, while inside, the figure of Christ Pantocrator is the central element of an elaborate complex of Byzantine mosaics.

The cathedral square is one of the beating hearts of city life, crowded during the summer months by tourists eager to take pictures of the cathedral from the best angle, while others enjoy a coffee in the many bars of the square.

History of the Duomo:
The Cathedral of Cefalù was commissioned by Roger II d’Altavilla, king of Sicily, Apulia and Calabria, who, during a storm at sea, made a vow to build a church in the place where he would have reached the land safely.

Construction began in 1131 and lasted for many years. The original design of the king was rather complex, but some parts were never completed, which explains the presence of some anomalies and discontinuities both outside and inside the building.

beaches of Cefalù

Cefalù is one of the main seaside resorts in northern Sicily and attracts many tourists with its beautiful beaches bathed by crystal clear blue waters.

Lido di Cefalù

The most famous beach of Cefalù is the Lido of the same name, located very close to the historic center. This city beach is of rare beauty, with a clear sea and fine sand, lined with picturesque houses with a rocky rise in the background.

The coastline stretches for about 1.5 km, perfect for a pleasant walk along the shore. Don’t forget to bring your camera with you to capture the striking postcard panorama that appears before your eyes.

Lido di Cefalù offers both free beach areas and areas equipped with deck chairs and umbrellas. This beach is very frequented by tourists and residents of all ages: young people consider it a popular meeting place, while families appreciate it for the sea with a clear and progressive and for the services available.

Mazzaforno Beach

A 3 km from Cefalù is the town of Mazzaforno, from which you can reach several small beaches nestled among the jagged rocks through a network of paths. Some of these beaches are sandy, others are pebble.

The most famous of these is the Mazzaforno Beach, a sandy beach interrupted here and there by rocks. Here too the sea is blue and transparent.

Torre Conca beach

The Pollina Beach (or Torre Conca) could be called the beach of the “movida”, because during the summer there are often parties and bonfires, even if there are night clubs open until late at night as in Spain.

Salinelle Beach

Another beach to see is the Salinelle Beach, the longest stretch of coastline in the area of Cefalù, extended for 15 kilometers, with sand and pebbles. Being exposed to the winds, it is ideal for surfing and sailing, but may not be suitable for families with small children, as the sea quickly becomes deep a short distance from the shore. There are areas equipped with deck chairs and umbrellas.

Sant’Ambrogio Beach

For those seeking tranquility, Sant’Ambrogio Beach is ideal. It is a mixed beach of gravel and fine sand, less known and not equipped, so usually uncrowded. It is located just 6 km from Cefalù and is perfect for long walks by the sea or for sunbathing in total relaxation.

Best hotels in Cefalù

Cefalù is one of the most popular destinations along the northern coast of Sicily, therefore it offers a wide and diverse range of hotel solutions. Here you will find everything from luxury hotels to family-run bed and breakfasts and guest houses, as well as of course a wide selection of holiday apartments.
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Last updated on: 25/08/2023 08:38:27