How to reach Palermo
By airplane. The easiest way to reach Palermo is by flight.
The international airport Falcone-Borsellino (Palermo, Punta Raisi) is 30 Km away from the town and it is connected to Palermo by the motorway A29 (Palermo-Trapani), by a railway and an efficient bus network. The airport is well connected to Rome (on average, there is a flight per-hour that lasts about 50 minutes). There are also direct flights (at least with weekly frequency) to other important capitals and European cities, which may vary during the seasons. In September, direct flights are available to/from: Hamburg, Barcelona, Bordeaux, Brussels, Cologne, Dublin, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, Hannover, Lyon, London, Luxemburg, Madrid, Moscow, Nantes, New York Munich, Oslo, Paris, Stockholm, Tunis, Zurich. The airlines companies that land/depart from the Palermo Airport are Alitalia , Thomas Cook, Jetaifly, Brussels Airlines Liège, Windjet, Ryanair, Meridiana, Easyjet, Airberlin, Air Italy, Vueling, Norwegian, Helvetic, Airberlin. The airport web site (www.gesap.it) indicates flight schedules and connections.
For the airport-city railway connections, please refer to: www.gesap.it. The train service is currently suspended because of maintenance works, but it could be active again in summer.
For the airport-city bus connections, please refer to www.prestiaecomande.it. The bus company can also be contacted by phone +39 091 586351 091 580457 or by fax +39 091 581241. The bus itinerary follows the following stops: Airport, via Belgio, Piazza A. De Gasperi, via Croce Rossa, via Libertà (3 stops), Politeama, via Emerico Amari, Palermo Central Station. Buses run every 30 minutes, from 5a.m to midnight. The ticket is € 6,10 and can be bought on the bus.
The airport’s taxi service is in operation from 06.00 to 24.00 and the taxi rank is to be found outside the Arrivals Area. Fares from the airport to the city are about € 40/€ 45. Useful numbers can be: Coop. Trinacria: +39 091-225455, Coop. Autoradio taxi tel: +39 091-513311
Another possibility is to flight to the international airport Vincenzo Florio (Trapani, Birgi) Airport, connected to many European cities by low-cost Ryan-air flights. The site of the airport is www.airgest.i. The airport is 115 km far from Palermo downtown. Bus connections are available. Since current time schedules are valid until the end of June, we recommend to check the time tables on the airport website (http://www.airgest.it/da-per-aeroporto-bus-navetta-trapani.asp) or on the sites of the two available bus companies ( www.autoservizisalemi.it, http://www.terravision.eu).
By train: Palermo Central Station is connected with the principal Italian towns. However, due to its peripheral geographical location, the train travel takes several hours (about 10 hours from Rome, and 17-20 hours from Milan) and is not recommended. For people not bored to the extreme slowness of the Italian railway connections, getting to Sicily by train (and by ferry from Reggio Calabria to Messina) can be an interesting experience. For timetable information, destinations and prices consult: http://www.trenitalia.it
By bus: Reaching Palermo by bus is easy from Rome or from Catania (where another international airport is available). There are also some buses from and to Germany, France, and Switzerland, but they suffer of the same slowness problem mentioned for the train trips. Information can be found at the following links:
Sais Trasporti – Daily connections from various towns in Sicily to Rome. tel. 095/536 201 – Website only in Italian http://www.saistrasporti.it
Autolinee Segesta – National connections from Sicily to Puglia, Rome, Milan, Bologne, Urbino and Mestre and international connections to Belgium, France, Switzerland and Germany. tel. 091304106. Website only in Italian http://www.segesta.it
By boat: From the Palermo port, it is possible for you to reach the most important Italian ports (Napoli, Salerno, Genova, Livorno, Cagliari, Catania), the little isles that surround Sicily (Eolie, Egadi, Pantelleria, Ustica, Linosa and Lampedusa) and the ports in Malta and Tunisia. If you like the sea, have time at hand or are travelling by car or campervan the following companies offer connections to Sicily:
Tirrenia: http://www.tirrenia.it, from Cagliari to Palermo and Trapani, and from Napoli to Palermo
Siremar: http://www.siremar.it, from Napoli to Milazzo and the Eolie Islands (Messina). (website only in Italian)
Grandi Navi Veloci: http://www.gnv.it, from Genova and Civitavecchia to Palermo
Ustica Lines: http://www.usticalines.it, from Napoli to Milazzo and all of the minor Islands
Snav: http://www.snav.it, From Civitavecchia and Napoli to Palermo. (website only in Italian).
Grimaldi: http://www.grimaldi-ferries.com, From Salerno to Palermo.