Branciforte Palace (Palazzo Branciforte) is equally renowned for its impressively restored architecture as it is for its fascinating exhibitions, and you can easily pair a visit here with a sightseeing or food tour in Palermo’s historic center. Take in the city’s Cathedral (Duomo), Royal Palace (Palazzo Reale), Massimo Theater (Teatro Massimo), and historic outdoor markets on foot or as part of a hop-on-hop-off bus tour before dedicating a few hours to exploring Palazzo Branciforte’s permanent and temporary exhibitions.
Things to know before you go
- With a museum, exhibition space, restaurant, library, bookshop, and cooking school, there’s a little something for everyone inside Palazzo Branciforte.
- The Archaeological Collection can be visited independently, but the Monte di Santa Rosalia and ground-floor collections must be visited as part of a guided tour, scheduled every 30 minutes.
- Most of the palazzo is accessible to wheelchair users; request detailed information at the information office.
How to get there
Branciforte Palace is located on Via Bara All'Olivella in central Palermo, within walking distance from the port, train station, and many of the city’s main sights. You can reach the Sicilian city from mainland Italy by ferry, train, or plane.
When to get there
Palermo can be uncomfortably hot during the midday hours in summer, and the palazzo offers a cool respite from the heat and crowds of this bustling port city.
Treasures in the Branciforte Palace
There are a number of cultural and culinary attractions inside the palazzo, including the vast archaeological collection housing exquisite frescoes, ancient coins, fine sculptures, and majolica ceramics. You can also browse the huge historical library that contains over 40,000 books or marvel at the beautifully preserved wooden architecture of the Monte di Santa Rosalia, where temporary art exhibitions are held. Foodies can join a cooking class at the Gambero Rosso cooking school or dine at the in-house Ristorante Branciforte.
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- Opera Dei Pupi (Rod Marionette Theatre)
- Massimo Opera House (Teatro Massimo)
- Capo Market (Mercato di Capo)
- Vucciria Market (La Vucciria)
- Politeama Garibaldi Theater (Teatro Politeama Garibaldi)
- Piazza & Fontana Pretoria
- Four Corners (Quattro Canti)
- Palermo Cathedral (Cattedrale di Palermo)
- Mirto Palace House Museum (Palazzo Mirto Casa Museo)
- Palermo Cruise Port (Terminal Crociere di Palermo)
- Church of the Gesù (Chiesa del Gesù)
- Chiaramonte-Steri Palace (Palazzo Chiaramonte-Steri)
- Ballarò Market (Mercato Ballarò)
- Palatine Chapel (Capella Palatina)