Walking tour to discover the mysteries of the old city of Palermo. With its winding alleys and its typical Arab urban structure, the city is an open air museum enriched by elegant palaces and majestic churches. The tour includes visits of places of legends, stories of ghosts and witches of the past centuries.
You will reach Piazza Verdi autonomously and there you will meet your guide.
From there, you will reach Teatro Massimo Vittorio Emanuele, the temple of European opera, a few metres away.
After visiting the theatre, you will stroll along the alleys and streets of the Arab district, up to Mercato Capo, one of the most famous markets of the Sicilian city, where local people and tourists go to purchase local products. Driven by the smells of exotic spices, you will get lost within the intricate maze of stalls.
At Mercato del Capo, you will hear stories of secret societies such as the Beati Paoli, a group friars who, at night, turned into a secret society, and many other stories. You will admire the Church of the Immaculate Conception, preserving baroque marvels and Sigismund Ventimiglia’s tomb.
Then, along Via dei Candelai, you will reach Piazza Vigliena, better known as the “Quattro Canti”. Here, looking up, you will admire the baroque elements of the palaces overlooking the square. You will hear the story of the death sentences imposed for witches at the time of the Inquisition. Your guide will tell you how, in the eighteenth century, Giovanna Bonanno, the “vinegar old lady”, prepared a poisonous mixture that left no trace, using “lice vinegar”, for many unhappy wives, so that they could give it to their husbands.
Then you will admire the Church of San Giuseppe dei Teatini, known for its “miraculous water”.
Walking along one of the most important streets in the center, via Vittorio Emanuele, you will end the tour in Piazza Marina. Here you will hear the story of Francesca la Sarda the poisoner, a woman who belonged to the upper class who killed her victims using a poison seemingly harmless, which looked like pure water. Your guide will tell you what happened on the day of her execution and how Francesca la Sarda curses the crowd gathered to see her death. That day she was not the only one to die.