The 5 best reasons to visit Palermo

(I’m not even mentioning the beautiful sea in my 5 things!)

Incredible food….

Italy is known for its delicious food. I know this to be true because I have travelled all over the country and eaten food that is embedded in my ‘best food memory bank’.

(All of my family has this memory bank, including my kids; we love food.)

Fifteen years ago I had some unbelievable sea-bass ravioli in Trieste that I can still recall the divine taste of.

Also in my list of memories is homemade wild boar pasta in a castle in Tuscany, delicious lamb on the Amalfi coast, tasty bites of cicchetti with my family in Venice, gelato in Rome… the list is literally endless.

I was therefore very excited to discover the array and quality of street food in Palermo. The arancini alone makes my stomach hungry just thinking about it.

If you love food, you’ll love Palermo!

Palermo is (perhaps) the most conquered city in the world….

It is often said that Palermo has been the most conquered city because of its key position in the Mediterranean.

This means that the city is a fascinating mix of cultures and history. As you wander the city you can see the influences of the Greek, Byzantine, Arab and Norman conquests.

“Sicily is the pearl of this century…Since old times, travellers from the most far away country…boast of its merits, praise its territory, rave about its extraordinary beauty, and highlight its strengths…because it brings together the best aspects from every other country.” Al-Idrisi Arab geographer, The Book of Roger, 1138 – 54

I love to photograph places that are mixes of things. That’s why London is so awesome – ancient next to modern – and Palermo has a similar feel. So many influences.

Photographing strangers

Being an island of warmth and sunshine, so much of life is lived out on the streets. Every where you go life is being discussed, celebrated and enjoyed.

I love to walk around listening to the beautiful Italian spoken all around me, watching friends enjoying the cafe culture, wandering through the pretty streets and people watching. The feeling of Palermo is just so vibrant.

It’s therefore an excellent place for street photography. We had a lot of fun photographing people here last year.

Mesmerising architecture

Beautiful light

I’ll admit, I am not a big architecture nut. I feel a little like the famous Turkish photographer, Ara Güle

When I’m taking a picture of Aya Sofia, what counts is the person passing by who stands for life.”

I do love a beautiful building, but it’s rare for me to photograph a building on its own. For me it’s about so many other things – the light, the people or life around it.

Palermo has this great mix – beautiful architecture, interesting street life and of course that gorgeous Mediterranean light.

The Markets

With good street food often comes fabulous street markets.

Italian markets are some of the most sumptuous looking I’ve seen. The fresh, colourful produce overflowing in baskets and boxes, is mouth-watering.

Now, if you want to get a feeling of the vibe of Palermo, this is a cool 2 minute video we found:

So those are my little delights of Palermo. Does this make you want to zip over to the Sicilian capital?

And if you want to join me in Palermo in a few weeks, two last minute places are now available.

Have a great day everyone,


Palermo in spring! From my workshop last year