From Cassaro to royal palace

From the Quattro Canti let’s enter on Vittorio Emanuele Avenue. Along the Via Maqueda, it  is one of the main streets of Palermo, but it 's better known to Palermitans with the old name of Cassaro (from the Arabic al'qasar: the fortress). After a few steps to the left visit the Church of St. Joseph of Teatini, built in 600 and covered with marble, magnificent frescoes and beautiful stucco. Continuing along Corso Vittorio Emanuele you meet Bologni square, dominated by a statue of Carlo V. In front of the square, Palazzo Riso, recently restored and place of exhibitions.

Going on the Cassaro, you can admire the oratory of San Salvatore, of Norman origin but evolved in the Baroque style in the last years of the 600. Characterized by an original plan (in the shape of an irregular octagon inscribed in a ellipse), today it is mainly used as an auditorium. Up ahead, the plane of the Cathedral and the Archbishop's Palace, the residence of Cardinal and home to the Diocesan Museum.

 

The Cathedral of Palermo, early Christian Basilica, then a mosque, then returned to the role of the mother church by the norman warlord Robert Giuscardo in 1185, is the most representative monument of the city and its long history, marked by the extraordinary meeting between different cultures and religions.

 

Beyond Porta Nuova on the left you can see the immense size of the Royal Palace. Seat since 1947 of the Regional Assembly of Sicily, best known as the Palace of the Normans, it contains within it the sumptuous Palatine Chapel, one of the most visited monuments in the island, a masterpiece of Byzantine art, famous for its mosaics including that of Christ Pantocrator.

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