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Port of Entry
38°07.20′N, 13°22.65′E Chart icon.png
Porto Commerciale, Palermo

Palermo, the capital of Sicily, has a long and distinguished history. Founded by the Carthaginians around 750 BC, it was subsequently an important port for both Roman and Byzantine empires. Taken by the Saracens in 827 AD, Palermo became the capital of the island, a situation which continued after its conquest by the Normans in 1071 AD. By the 12th century, the city was widely regarded as one of the finest and most cultured cities in Europe. Both Arab and Norman influence is evident in much of the architecture that survives in the modern city. However, much of the city was heavily damaged in World War II and the area around the harbour is particularly decrepit even today. Nevertheless, Palermo’s fine churches and cathedral and its wonderful Norman and Byzantine mosaics make it an essential stopover when cruising the northern coast of Sicily. The city is also a good base for exploring the attractions of the interior, especially the breathtaking Norman cathedral at Monreale 10 km to the SW.

Visiting yachts normally berth at one of the yacht club berths along the mole at the SW end of the Porto Commerciale or in the large marina at Aquasanta one mile to the N.


British Admiralty
1976 - Capo di Bonifati to Capo San Vito
963 - Porto di Palermo


The prevailing winds around the Aolian Islands during the summer tend to be from NW or NE, although in calm weather seabreezes can be encountered from any direction blowing onto and between the islands. While infrequent, gales are not unknown during the spring and early summer and careful forward planning is necessary as there are only two harbours which offer adequate shelter (and even then, not in strong southerlies). In winter, the gregale is a strong NE wind that can affect the whole of the island group and blow for several days.

Sources for weather forecasts:

  • There is a continuous (computerised voice) weather forecast on VHF 68 - first in Italian and then followed with an English translation.
  • The same forecast is given in Italian and English on VHF coastal stations following a notification on channel 16
  • Navtex weather forecasts are broadcast from stations at Roma, Cagliari (Sardinia) and Augusta (Sicily).


Popular passages/routes, timing, etc.



Also see World Cruiser's Nets.


The high land of Capo Gallo six miles N of Palermo is conspicuous from some distance off. Closer in, the cranes of the commercial harbour are clearly visible. The yacht berths are at the southern end of the commercial harbour (not to be confused with the industrial harbour immediately to the N). Ferries enter and leave the commercial harbour at speed, so care is needed on the approach.


Palermo is a port of entry/exit to Italy.

For entrance details see Italy.


Most yachts seek a berth at one of the various yacht clubs and concessions that occupy the length of Molo Bersagliere, the mole enclosing the inner harbour. Depths along the quay are 5.0 - 7.0 metres and yachts of up to 40 metres can be accommodated. Berths here can be in short supply in busy periods, but it is usually possible to negotiate a space outside the mid July to end August holiday season. Yachts can also pass through to the inner cala at the end of the inlet, where there are spaces for around 150 vessels on pontoons. However, it is usually packed in here and you will get little sleep with all the traffic noise, so you are better off on the mole if possible. Laid moorings, water and electricity at all berths. Toilets and showers at the yacht clubs.

Marinas & Yacht Clubs

  • Molo C.T. Bersagliere (molo sud)
    • Florio Yacht Club & Sea-Folk Yacht Charter s.c.r.l. Quoted on September 2013 €50.- per night for 12 metres; would probably settle for €40.- for 2-3 nights. --s/v Seatern 05:48, 26 September 2013 (BST)
      Contact: Antonio Sparacino, Administrator
      Address: Molo C.T. Bersagliere (molo sud), 90133 Palermo
      Telephone: +39 091.2515002
      Fax: +39 091.6916737
      Mobile: +39 339.6472272 & +39 333.2566244
      website - email
      Skype: seafolk1
    • Albaria Club
      They have a few moorings just south of the AGIP fuel station who handles the moorings - €40.- per night, €70.- for 2 nights, €100.- for 3 nights.
      AGIP fuel attendant (Eloy, Cell. +39 340.5075688) handles moorings for next door Albaria Club. (see AGIP in fuel for tel. to call) -- s/v Seatern 06:03, 26 September 2013 (BST)

06/15 Now Euro 50 per night straight, free water, power and reasonable wifi. S/v Common Sense

    • Address: Molo C.T. Bersagliere (molo sud), 90133 Palermo
      Telephone: +39 091.453595
      Mobile: +39 337.890269
      Office: Viale Regina Elena, 89/A - 90149 Palermo
    • Club Salpancore.
      09/2013: €60.- per night for 12 metres probably negotiable to €50.-; including water, electrical and taxes.
      Address: Molo C.T. Bersagliere (molo sud), 90133 Palermo (near the AGIP fuel dock).
  • Inner Cala
    • Club Mediterraneo
    • YC Italiano
  • North of Porto Commerciale
    • Acquasanta Marina
      09/2013: €110.- "discounted" to €90.- based on documents length; including water, electrical, wifi and taxes.
    • Aranella
      09 2013: €70.- per night for 12 metres.
      Telephone: +39 091.542949 or +39 091.540264
  • Cantiere del Mediterraneo (Motomar?)
    09 2013: €85.- per night for 12 metres.
    Telephone:+39 091.453145



Yacht Repairs and Services

Marine Stores

  • Calandra Vittorio - Via Garibaldi, 26/29 - 90133 Palermo - Tel/Fax +39 091.6161905 - All kind of electrical supplies and accessories


Slipway (up to 100T). Fixed and mobile cranes (50T). Outdoor storage. Engine, electrical and electronic repairs. Steel, wood and fiberglass repairs. Divers.

  • D'arpa Motori - Tel. Sales +39 091.201662 - Tel. Assistance +39 091.202694 - Website - Engine & generators sales, parts, maintenance, repairs.

Fuel, Water, & Electricity

AGIP, ENI Fuel station - Molo Sud Porto C.T. Bersagliere (molo sud) - 90133 Palermo - 08.00-13.00 and 14.00-18.30 - Tel. +39 091.5072531 - Cell. +39 329.8836026 & +39 333.2067738 - Email
Attendant (Eloy, Cell. +39 340.5075688) handles moorings for next door Albaria Club. --s/v Seatern 06:09, 8 October 2013 (BST)
at the yacht berths
at the yacht berths

Things to do Ashore


Most of Palermo’s attractions are within easy walking distance of the harbour. A stroll up Corso Vittorio Emmanuele to Piazza Pretoria with its stunning Florentine-designed fountain, decorated with over twenty superb marble statues, is a must. The baroque Chiesa di San Giuseppe dei Teatini, is worth a visit for its interior, profusely decorated with marble and covered in frescoes. Another must is the 12th century Norman church of La Martorana, founded by George of Antioch and covered with beautiful gilded mosaics of the nativity and saints. Palermo Cathedral is an interesting architectural mish-mash of styles (mainly Norman/Arab) with an incongruous late 18th century dome. To the north of the old town, through the Porta Nuova, a 16th century town gate, is the Palazzo Normanni, the regional seat of government. The attraction here is the wonderful Capella Palatina, the interior of which is completely covered with magnificent gilded Byzantine mosaics (be prepared for long queues, especially in summer). For even more wonderful mosaics, an absolute must is a visit to the Norman cathedral at Monreale, half an hour away by bus. Although the exterior is rather plain, the interior is covered from floor to ceiling with a breathtakingly beautiful series of mosaics of Old and New Testament scenes, the martyrdoms of Saints Paul and Peter and an awe-inspiring Christos Pantokrator in the central apse. The adjacent Benedictine cloisters are also worth a visit once you have got your breath back.

Palermo sights
Piazza Pretoria, Palermo
The 16th century Porta Nuova
Palermo Cathedral
Mosaics in La Martorana church
Capella Palatina, Palermo
Monreale Cathedral
Mosaics in Monreale Cathedral
Benedictine cloisters, Monreale

Grocery & Supply Stores

Numerous shops and supermarkets in the town.

Special/Interesting Stores

  • Terracotta miniature architecture sculpture: Cittacotte divisiari - Architetture in miniatura di terra cotta - Via Vittorio Emanuale, 120 - 90133 Palermo - Tel. +39 091.322066 - Cell. +39 338.3626784 - Website


  • Good trattorias around the port area.
  • Ristorante Palazzo Trabucco near Piazza Marina is highly recommended --Athene of Lymington 12:47, 11 November 2010 (UTC)
  • Ferro di Cavallo on Via Venezia is good value and busy, for lunch arrive before 13.00 --RobbieW 07:59, 29 August 2013 (BST)
  • Panineria Totuccio E Lillia Via Bara all'Olivella, 91 - Palermo - Tel. +39 320.2926255 - For 10.- euros a huge buffet of tappas, etc -- s/v Seatern 06:23, 26 September 2013 (BST)




Motorbike & Car Rentals

Several outlets in the town

Garbage Disposal

Bins at all the yacht clubs.


Transportation (local and/or international)

  • Airport at Punta Raisi, 32 km to W of Palermo. Domestic and international flights.
  • Local and intercity train service, including to Naples and Rome
  • Local and intercity buses covering most Sicilian towns.
  • Ferries to Cagliari (Sardinia), Naples, Livorno, Genoa and the island of Ustica. Summer-only service to the Aeolian Islands.


Contact details of "Cruiser's Friends" that can be contacted for local information or assistance.


List links to discussion threads on partnering forums. (see link for requirements)


References & Publications

See Italy.


We welcome users' contributions to the Wiki. Please click on Comments to view other users' comments, add your own personal experiences or recommend any changes to this page following your visit.

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SailorSmiley.gifContributors to this page

Names: Athene of Lymington, s/v Seatern

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