What to Do in Cefalù

All interesting places in Cefalu can be visited in one day

What to visit in Cefalù, best time to go to in 2024? Weather, average temperature by month, hotel and excursions prices. Best things to do in Cefalù, how to get there from Palermo, what other seaside resorts are there in Sicily – a detailed guide from good Time for Trip.

Cefalù is a small resort town in Sicily, the largest but not yet immensely popular among tourists the island of Italy. Even Italians themselves prefer to spend their seaside holidays a bit further north, in Calabria, than to go south. Thus, the question of the best months for a vacation in Cefalu is not often on their agenda. As, of course, the one of what you can visit there.

Foreign tourists are slightly more informed. Today, they eagerly come not only to see the sights of Sicily but also to vacation at the sea here.

Fortunately, the season on the island lasts very long: it’s getting hot in Sicily in May and even in October it’s possible swimming in the sea there

At the same time, seaside resorts like Cefalù aren’t particularly often noticed while choosing a place for a summer vacation. There is also nothing to say about massiveness – the companies today, if they sell tours to Sicily, almost exclusively focus on its eastern coast. On the resorts like Taormina, Letojanni, and others…

However, people deciding to spend holiday in Cefalù

In the Summer

will be surprised, comparing our words with reality – during the season, the town experiences a literal invasion of travelers. But don’t worry, the overwhelming majority of them are day-trippers.

Operating in the format of “arrived (from Palermo), swam a couple of times, took a walk, forgot”. In other words, they were charmed and remembered something, but after a couple of days, they still left – because “what can you visit in Cefalù – almost nothing”?!

Such a course of action is understandable and even forgivable – Italy has enough cozy towns with enchanting views of old houses, incredibly charming and exclusively photogenic. But not all of them situated near the (really) warm sea and have a spacious sandy beach.

Equally, a very small number of other places in Italy and Europe have a climate similar to the one of Sicily!

What to See in Cefalù

There are very few attractions there. And with proper physical preparation, you can visit them all in one day. Of course, if you don’t decide to stay here for a week! Because you can climb the Rocca di Cefalù, a hill overlooking the city, several times.

And this is a worthwhile thing! Since on the way you will not only confirm your good or bad physical shape but also see ancient ruins of houses and fortresses, a temple of Diana, and even a small church.

The view from the panoramic platform at the top of the rock fully justifies the money you will have to pay (€5)

Cefalu has a warm sea and a spacious sandy beach

The ascent requires comfortable shoes – walking in sandals can rub your knees and palms to blood. Or even lead to more unpleasant consequences.

However, to climb to the panoramic platform, you do not need to equip yourself as if you were going to climb Mount Etna

Also, during your stay in the seaside town, you will surely see the

Cefalù Cathedral

from the outside and inside. Because this magnificent building of Romanesque architecture with Arabic notes and rich Baroque details is the undisputed architectural dominant of the city. It was placed here for the edification of the descendants by the Norman king of Sicily, Roger II, in the 12th century.

The temple appeared here in 1130. That year, sailing past the coast of Sicily, the king Roger II was caught in a terrible storm and promised to build a church if he was rescued.

According to legend, God heeded his plea, the storm subsided as if by magic, and the royal ship miraculously anchored in the bay of Cefalu. It happened on August 6, Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord

For a long time, this story considered as a tail, but not long ago, confirming the facts documents of the 12th century were found.

Due to such an obviously unusual event as the landing of an entire king and his retinue, the day of August, 6 is considered the most important holiday here

So, you must visit the Cefalù Cathedral – it’s free. The original Byzantine mosaics preserved in the altar, especially the image of Christ Pantocrator, look like real masterpieces. Approximately similar samples you can also see in the Palatine Chapel in Palermo and in the Monreale Cathedral.

For entering the tower, you will have to pay a small fee

Since 2015, the Cathedral of the Transfiguration of the Lord in Cefalù has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The medieval Cathedral of the Transfiguration of the Lord is the main attraction of Cefalu

Naturally, in addition to the cathedral, it is worth seeing the

Old Town of Cefalù

Strolling through it both in the morning and in the evening – it is an exquisite pleasure. In most cases, it is not worth doing this on a summer day – even gelato in your hand can melt.

Prices in shops and local taverns though may upset you. But this is understandable – becoming a resort, any town raises itself and rewrites price tags

Excursions to the notable places of Cefalù with an English-speaking guide are a priori not cheap (from €200). But as part of a group and for much less money, you can always come here for a few hours from Palermo or Taormina.

Best Months to Visit Cefalù

You should start thinking about a trip to Sicily no later than February. Because even in April, island’s nature, even on its northern coast, not only blooms but has already done so.

So, the prudent tourist, having (for fair money) booked hotel in Cefalù in winter for the spring dates, will be rewarded with warmth, plenty of sunny days, and incredibly vibrant colors

The grass and trees look as if they were just painted. Admiring the sea, you stop believing in the reality of what is happening.

The air temperature in Cefalù in April ranges from +15-23 °C, sometimes reaching peaks of +24-28 °C. Nights are initially noticeably colder: +7-12 °C. But closer to the end of the month, the air warms up, so that even after the sunset, the air remains heated up to +18 °C.

May is more consistent here – mostly +20-25 °C, at the end up to +28-30 °C – and less rainy. The number of cloudy days in this month rarely exceeds 2-3. And they are more likely to be called by tourists from the UK or the northern states of the USA, changeable-cloudy.

June

here is not the beginning of but the real high season. Not in terms of heat – the atmosphere warms up to a moderate +28-30 °C – but because of the clarity of the days and the dryness of the air.

Perhaps the beginning of summer is the best time to visit Cefalù! And early June is best suited for a holiday in Sicily in general

To stay outdoors in this town in July and August for a long time, you need to be born in these parts. Or at least have excellent health – temperatures above +40 °C, and sometimes even +45 °C in the shade, will not be endured by everyone.

September in these places is slightly less sunny – regularly arriving atmospheric fronts successfully push the African dryness. The rains fall more often, breathing becomes easier, and thermometers try not to shock vacationers: they usually something like +25-27 °C.

At night, you can walk without fearing to cool down even in a T-shirt – the air is filled with real summer warmth, +20-22 °C

October in Cefalù is considered suitable time for sunbathing and even swimming: during the day the temperature will settle in the range of from +20 °C to +24-26 °C. Rainy days will rarely exceed 5-6.

Sea Temperature in Cefalù

You can start swimming in the sea in Cefalu in May.

You can start swimming here as early as May! Sometimes at the beginning, but more often by the middle of the final month of spring, the sea off coast warm up to +20-22 °C. In June, only the lazy persons or those who simply do not like this type of activity doesn’t splash in the Mediterranean Sea.

In July and August, the sea off the coast of Cefalù warms up to +27-28 °C – surprisingly, while maintaining natural color and transparency. Blue-green algae have been noticed by individual travelers, but a jelly-like mass along the shore is a rarity for these places

On the local beach  during the day, it becomes quite difficult to lay out a towel. Although those who swam in the summer in Mondello, the near suburb of Palermo, will testify – there are far fewer people willing to plunge into Cefalù.

Even in September, the sea in the vicinity of the town maintains a pleasant warmth: up to +25-26 °C. And only in October does the temperature begin to decrease to the ranger of +21-23 °C.

Which, of course, does not prevent swimming and floating. But literally disgusts most locals from this activity – for them, it’s as if a red flag has been hung.

Prices 2024

Accommodation in local hotels and guesthouses is not cheap. Prices in the range of €150/night for a double room, even at the start of the season, are more the rule than the exception.

But both in the very center of the resort and its surroundings, you can find much more attractive options

For example, in the old town of Cefalù, there are apartments Incao Holiday Il Moro House Campeggio Sanfilippo. Which in mid-May can be rented for less than €100/night. The beach is a couple of minutes’ walk away, and as soon as you step out the door, you find yourself in the thick of city life.

Noticeably more expensive (from €120) is Baronetto B&B, which is located approximately at an equal (and small) distance from both the each and the historic streets.

But both breakfast and parking are included in this price. And from the station, where trains from Palermo arrive, you can walk in about 15 minutes.

How to Get There

Trains regularly run from Palermo to Cefalù, the journey will take from 40 to 55 minutes, and the adult ticket costs less then 7 € for one-way. You can check the schedule and buy it online on the official website of the Italian railways.

Traveling by car from the central part of Palermo will take longer – over an hour. And you will have to spend not only on fuel but also on a toll road!

What Else

In addition to Cefalù, Sicily has other excellent seaside resorts.

You must have heard about the famous Taormina before you even came to the island. But San Vito Lo Capo, one of the best places for a seaside vacation in Italy, is still not suspected by every potential vacationer.

You can quickly swim and sunbathe in Mondello, a beach near Palermo. Although in the season, there are too many vacationers there.

© Goodtimefortrip.com

About STen 184 Articles
Traveling is like a life: the further you go, the more understand. I am not a writer or a journalist, but believe that my real & reach experience gained on trips can be useful. The whole Europe and Turkey are enough for me so far... Spent a lot of time in Turkey, lived in Italy and Spain, visited France and the Czech Republic, Greece and Hungary, now I am exploring Montenegro)

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