La Martorana

A mosaicked medieval church in the center of Palermo

Note that in 2012 the church is undergoing renovations scheduled to end in December, 2012; this may affect your visit.

La Martorana (a.k.a. Santa Maria dell'Ammiraglio) may have a baroque facade, but this mosaicked church and its next-door neighbor San Cataldo—that of the little dark pink eraser-head domes—are both Norman and date to the 1140s–50s.

Enter La Martorana by heading up the stairs to its right and ducking under the surviving 12th-century bell tower of lithe columns and corrugated archways.

Aside from some minimal baroque redecoration and 1717 frescoes by Borremans, the interior is pure glittering gold-back mosaic, courtesy of early–12th century Greek artists who gave Christ kindly eyes and quoted the Bible in flowing Arabic script on the dome.

It was here that the nobility met in Parliament after the Sicilian Vespers.

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Tips & links

Details

Chiesa della Martorana
Piazza Bellini 3 (next door to Piazza Pretoria)
tel. +39-345-828-8231
Open Mon–Sat 9:30am–1pm, 3:30–5pm (to 6pm in summer)
Open Sun 9:15am–10:30am
Adm: €2

Bus: 101,102, 107, 122, 225, GIALLA

Planning your time

Spend at least 15 minutes inside this gorgeous church.

Tourist info

Palermo tourist office
Piazza Castelnuovo 34
tel. +39-091-605-8351
www.turismopalermo.it
www.provincia.palermo.it/turismo

Also useful:
www.comune.palermo.it
www.palermotourism.com

Buses: www.amat.pa.it
Trains: www.trenitalia.com
Airport: www.gesap.it
Port: www.portpalermo.it

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Lodging in Palermo
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Details
Chiesa della Martorana
Piazza Bellini 3 (next door to Piazza Pretoria)
tel. +39-345-828-8231
Open Mon–Sat 9:30am–1pm, 3:30–5pm (to 6pm in summer)
Open Sun 9:15am–10:30am
Adm: €2

Bus: 101,102, 107, 122, 225, GIALLA
Tourist Info

Palermo tourist office
Piazza Castelnuovo 34
tel. +39-091-605-8351
www.turismopalermo.it
www.provincia.palermo.it/turismo

Also useful:
www.comune.palermo.it
www.palermotourism.com

Buses: www.amat.pa.it
Trains: www.trenitalia.com
Airport: www.gesap.it
Port: www.portpalermo.it


Palermo lodging
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Reid's Recommended hotels in Palermo
★★ Centrale Palace Hotel [€€]
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