Cefalù is a picturesque village dominated by a promontory of 270 m high. The small town is rich in history and natural beauty with a crystal-clear sea and a fine and golden sandy beach, one of the most beautiful of the Tyrrhenian coast. It is suitable for who seeks a holiday that combines culture and relax, sea and sun.
The ancient Kephalodion – Greek term that means head, related to the natural shape of the rock that overlooks the village – was inhabited since the prehistory. Cefalù is one of the 15 Sicilian villages belonging to the Madonie Regional Natural Park. It keeps unchanged both its medieval appearance, with narrow streets, finely decorated palaces; and its maritime appearance, with the old fishermen’s houses that overlooks the sea.
Guided tour of Cefalù
The Cathedral was built in 1131. According to legend, Roger II built the church after a vow made to the Divine Saviour. A large terraced parvis preceeds the facade, which is flanked, by two towers with pyramidal pinnacles dating back to the 15th century:
- the first one with flame shaped battlements, which represent the Church’s power;
- the second one with ghibellines battlements, which represent the King’s power;
Three arches supported by four columns decorate the portico that dates back to the 15th century.
The church has a Latin cross form divided into three naves. Byzantine mosaics magnificently decorate the central apse. Impressive above all is the figure of the Pantokrator. The baroque stuccoes by Scipione Li Volsi in the central nave, the Virgin Mary with her Child by Antonello Gagini are very interesting from an artistic point of view.
There is also an elegant cloister, with double columns decorated by carved capitals; some of them are masterpiece of the Sicilian medieval sculpture.
What to see in Cefalù
- Medieval washhouse
- Mandralisca Museum
- Portrait of man or unknown sailor by Antonello da Messina
- Temple of Diana
- Osterio Magno