Guided private tour of the Monreale Cathedral, the Benedictine Cloister, and the town. If you are in Palermo you cannot miss the visit to Monreale!
Monreale is a beautiful and quiet town, with just over 38,000 inhabitants, located approximately 10 km away from Palermo, at an altitude of 310 m above sea level. Its elevated position allows the visitor to enjoy unique views. Monreale, in fact, overlooks the so-called “Conca d’oro”, a vast plain of 100 square kilometers covered with citrus groves in ancient times. When the trees were loaded with fruit, especially lemons, the predominant color gave the impression, for those who looked down, to see a vast golden valley. Looking a little farther it will be possible to see the Gulf of Palermo and the whole city too.
The origins of Monreale date back to the medieval period.The town developed around its wonderful Cathedral, built in the ’70s – ’80s of the twelfth century, and World Heritage Site since 2015. Commissioner and founder of the church was the third Norman king William II, nicknamed “the good”, enlightened monarch and patron of the arts of those times.
The tour begins with a visit to the magnificent Monreale Cathedral. The grandiose interior of the church houses almost 6500 square meters of mosaic tiles that tell the episodes of the Old and New Testament. What leaves literally stunned is certainly the vision of pure gold tiles that cover the entire walls of the building, hence the name “golden temple”.
After the Monreale Cathedral, for those who wish, it will be possible to complete the visit of the monumental complex with the Benedictine Cloister. This is another beautiful place where you will find 228 columns with amazing capitals that surround a garden with plants of symbolic meaning.
The visit will also give you the opportunity to see the oldest district of the town with its narrow cobblestone streets and enjoy the beauty of the view of Palermo from the panoramic point.
Upon request, it will also be possible to attend a brief demonstration of mosaic work, an ancient tradition that some local artisans continue to keep alive.
Meet your guide at the side entrance of the Cathedral in Piazza Vittorio Emanuele and enjoy a guided tour of the interior, where you can admire the magnificent mosaics.
We then move on to the Benedictine Cloister. Visit the Benedictine Cloister and stop to admire the magnificent view of the Conca d'oro and Palermo.
A stroll through the city centre and a stop at a craft workshop to watch a brief mosaic-making demonstration.