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Introducing Cefalù

The squares, streets and churches of this medieval town are so postcard-pretty that it's no wonder director Giuseppe Tornatore chose to set parts of his much-loved film Cinema Paradiso here. Unfortunately, you won't be alone in admiring the honey-hued stone buildings, mosaic-adorned cathedral and dramatic backdrop of La Rocca (the Rock) when you visit – during summer, holidaymakers from every corner of the country flock to Cefalù to relax in resort hotels, stroll the narrow cobbled streets and sun themselves on the long sandy beach.

The town is perfectly suited to slow, pedestrianised exploration. The little port is lined with narrow fishing boats and populated with local fishermen who can often be observed maintaining their boats, mending their nets and discussing the day's catch. The lungomare (seafront promenade) is very popular for the passeggiata (evening stroll), as is the main street, Corso Ruggero.

Cefalù is only a one-hour rail trip from Palermo, and there is also convenient car parking next to the train station. From the front of the station building, turn right and walk down Via Gramsci to reach Via Matteotti, which heads directly into the old town centre. If you are heading for the beach, turn left from the station into Via Gramsci, turn right down Via N Martoglio, then take Via Vazzano, which will bring you to the western end of the lungomare.