A city on the northern coast of Sicily, Cefalu is one of the busier tourist destinations in the area and an important part of the region’s history. With vast numbers of centuries-old cathedrals, many old buildings and palaces and ancient roman baths, Cefalu is the ideal destination for history and architecture lovers, but those simply seeking a relaxing beach holiday will not be disappointed. holiday rental choices include attractive beachside villas and charming country houses.
The Cathedral of Cefalu is the town’s main draw, and began life in 1131. The exterior of the building is extremely well preserved, and is instantly recognisable due to its large matching towers that flank the front porch. Built in the Sicilian Romanesque style, the interior houses a respectable collection of Byzantine art.
There are a number of other churches to visit in the historic city, with the 16th Century pair of the Santa Maria dell’ Odigitria and the Santissima Annunziata just two of the fine examples of Baroque architecture. In terms of eating and drinking there are many small cafes and traditional restaurants to be discovered as you walk around the narrowing winding streets, where you will discover why gastronomy is an important part of Sicilian culture.
Those seeking to get away from the city will be pleased to discover that there are also many beaches just a short distance away. There are secluded sandy stretches and busy water sports beaches to choose from, as well as warm waters that are ideal for swimming in and a good range of shops and other tourist facilities.
Sicily is an island of remarkable beauty. Rich in history, blessed with stunning scenery and home of the famous Mount Etna, every effort should be made to explore as much as possible of the island whilst staying in Cefalu. Palermo is the capital and within an hour’s drive, with a number of stop-offs along the route. The city also marks the beginning of the Madonie Natural Park.
Sicily draws many tourists due to its Sub-tropical Mediterranean climate, and visitors can expect average temperatures of 26°C in summer and 137°C in even the coolest months of winter. Spring and summer months are remarkably dry and rainfall is almost non-existent from May to September.
Palermo International Airport (PMO) is 60km from Cefalu, and makes for an easy and enjoyable journey east along the coast. The airport receives flights from London Stansted (Ryanair), and London Gatwick (easyJet), with more routes planned in the future.
The charming medieval town of Cefalu has an abundance of holiday rental properties and may be one of the most popular holiday destinations in the whole of Sicily – certainly along the picturesque north coast. 67km from the capital and just an hour and a half from the airport, Cefalu is easy to reach, has a huge number of ancient churches and cathedrals to be explored, and has some of the best tourist facilities in the region, including a great beach. What more can you ask for?!
Located in Piazza del Duomo, Cefalu Cathedral is arguably the most important site in town, and dates back to 1131. It has a fortress-like appearance and dominates the local landscape – being visible from miles around. As well as being impressive architecturally, the cathedral will also be of interest to art lovers, as its interior is almost entirely decorated in lavish artwork and religious paintings. A number of ancient churches and palaces can also be seen around town, and attractions such as these can easily fill a day or two of your holiday.
A Cefalu villa can also be used for a relaxing holiday of doing very little at all. With the weather almost always warm and the sun almost always shining, sitting outside and enjoying a meal or drink can be enjoyed until well into the evening and throughout much of the year. A good selection of restaurants, cafes, pizzerias, supermarkets and shops can be found around the town centre, and Cefalu generally looks after self-catering tourists very well. Cefalu also has a public beach – perfect for more relaxation.
Cefalu is on the fringes of a regional park, so can also be a great destination for those looking for hiking, wildlife-spotting and mountain climbing opportunities. You may also choose to hop in the hire car and visit some of the other towns and villages of the Palermo region, with Palermo itself less than an hour’s drive away.
The blissful Sicilian weather is one of the main reasons why Cefalu is such a popular destination with foreign visitors, as it allows them to escape the uncertain summers and cold winters of the UK, and land in 30C plus temperatures and days of beautiful sunshine. Though temperatures drop outside of peak season, they are still mild in winter – and certainly warmer than those in Britain at that time of year!
Cefalu is exactly 100km from Palermo Airport (PMO), and an enjoyable scenic drive can be had between the two destinations. At time of writing the airport only receives flights from the UK through budget airlines Ryanair and easyJet, but this remains a far preferable option to flying to Catania (CTA) and having to undertake a laborious two hour drive to your holiday rental villa or apartment.