Cefalù (Sicily, Italy)

Sicily is pretty, and Cefalù is a little gem of a town within it. Situated on the northern coast of Sicily and some 75km east of Palermo, Cefalù is known for its beaches and warm meditteranean waters. Like most places in Italy, Cefalù is filled with historic buildings. This family-friendly town is small enough to get round on foot.

Cefalu beach with sunbathers and sea


For swimming purposes Cefalù's "long beach" is superior to the "fishing boat beach". We visited Cefalù's fishing boat beach on the 24th September 2008. The water was warm enough to swim in, but there was a fair amount of cigarettes and other bits of garbage resting in water as it lapped up onto the beach. We took our little one in and I was continuously trying to move her to cleaner bits of the water.

The long beach is more geared up for bathers - you can hire beach umbrellas and kayaks there and the water seems cleaner. If this type of thing bothers you, you should note that there are occassionally topless female sunbathers.

Getting to Cefalù

There are regular trains between Cefalù and Palermo, Messina and Milazzo. The train between Palermo and Cefalù offers some attractive coastal views. There are also buses running between Cefalù (from outside the train station) and Palermo.

Don't use Sicilian Realty Travel Agency

We booked our accommodation with Sicilian Realty. They're a sleepy organisation, who told us 4 days before our arrival that they hadn't finished building the bed & breakfast, and would put us up at a flat. The flat didn't have a wireless connection (although they offered the use of their wireless connection in their offices, this isn't as convenient as logging on in the comfort of your room), which was one of the reasons we booked at the unfinished bed and breakfast. When shown to our flat, we were very surprised that the young man didn't help us carry our luggage up two very steep flights of steps (or maybe the steepness is why he didn't!). For breakfast they gave us vouchers for a nearby restaurant, which on the first morning we couldn't use as the restaurant was closed. They offered to keep our luggage in their office until midday on the day we checked out, and to top off the experience their offices were shut that morning.

Top things to do in Cefalù


Relax on the beach, swim in the mediterranean and kayak about.


Take a walk along the rocks to the north of the historic centre of Cefalù, along the old megalithic walls (V century b.C.) still surrounding the town and connecting the two harbours (the ancient "Molo" and Presidiana).

Megalithic walls in Cefalu (Sicily, Italy)


Hike up the staircase to the top of "The Rock" to see Tempio di Diana (Diana's Temple), the castle and the views from the top.

"The Rock" at Cefalu, Sicily (Italy)


See the Cathedral. Begun in 1131, the Cathedral consists of a façade with a 4-storey tower on each end.

Cathederal in Cefalu, Sicily (Italy)


Day-trip to the Aeolian Islands.

Language school

Solemar Sicilia language school is situated in Cefalù.

Blogs about Cefalù

George Contreras
26 May 2009
Of Cefalu

George Contreras is coaching American Football in Italy. He is the Defensive Coordinator of the Catania Elephants in the Italian Football League. Happily for us, he tries to see interesting things in between the football - here's a photo of the lady who guards the Duomo in Cefalu.

She guards the Duomo in Cefalu

"Boneless Rabbit"
11 Oct 2008
The Rock

From her tiny hotel, Boneless Rabbit went about exploring Cefalù. In Cefalù she saw La Rocca (The Rock), the Cathedral and Temple of Diana.

fortifications on the Rock in Cefalu

Jason Johnson
27 Jul 2008
Best pics: Sicily

Some beautiful photos of Sicily in this posting, including this panaramic view of Cefalu.
panaramic view of Cefalu from the Rock

Other places to visit in Sicily

Favignana Island


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