We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Review Highlights
Arab-Norman Church of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre

Built in the 12th century this Arab-Norman church belongs to the Papal Order of the Knights of the... read more

Reviewed 2 weeks ago
Anthony H
Williamsburg, Virginia
Small, sparse inside but very moving

I like this little chapel. It has virtually no decoration inside but the architecture is truly... read more

Reviewed 2 weeks ago
Cranleigh, United Kingdom
Read all 841 reviews
All photos (547)
Full view
Certificate of Excellence
Traveller Overview
  • Excellent57%
  • Very good30%
  • Average9%
  • Poor3%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“red domes”(15 reviews)
“la martorana”(16 reviews)
This small church of San Cataldo was built in 1160, during the Norman occupation of Palermo.
Piazza Bellini, Palermo, Sicily, Italy
+39 091 616 1692
Top Selling Tours & Activities in and around Palermo
from US$20.06
More Info
from US$5.80
More Info
from US$104.10
More Info
from US$40.50
More Info
Most Helpful Positive Review
Reviewed 30 September 2007

The San Cataldo chapel is located in Piazza Bellini up a flight of steps and directly adjacent to Santa Maria dell' Ammiraglio (La Martorana). Built in the twelfth century it is easily recognisable by the row of three Arab-style red domes lining the roof and...More

7  Thank debdancing
Most Helpful Critical Review
Reviewed 12 August 2013

The church is simple inside, with no mosaics. But as its outside shows fine Arab-Norman style architecture, it tells much of the history of Sicily, Normans inheriting much from the Arabs, who had the island before the Normans. Check it out!:)

1  Thank Petsku83
Reviews (841)
Filter reviews
152 results
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
More languages
Show reviews that mention
All reviews red domes la martorana holy sepulchre norman architecture mosaic floors spiritual place arab influence nineteenth century special atmosphere small chapel beautiful interior piazza pretoria quattro canti simplicity knights jerusalem style
Updating list...
1 - 10 of 152 reviews
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Built in the 12th century this Arab-Norman church belongs to the Papal Order of the Knights of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem. This church is in the heart of Palermo and is next to the Unesco site of La Martorana and across the square from...More

Thank Anthony H
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

I like this little chapel. It has virtually no decoration inside but the architecture is truly fascinating. Each of the columns has a different capitol and the sheer simplicity helps it to feel more personal and spiritual.

Thank TJD744
Reviewed 9 October 2018 via mobile

Unlike so many Palermo churches, it's the plain interior of this building that makes it so special. Rather than wall mosaics, admire the plain but elegant stone work and the 3 beautifull domes. Also look down at what's under your feet..

Thank grahamc785
Reviewed 8 October 2018

I loved this little church because it is so different from anything else in the area. The very plain architecture is Arab-Norman from the 12th century. Since the 1930's it belongs to the Order of the Holy Sepulchre.

Thank showmemo61
Reviewed 3 October 2018

I loved this little church - from it's unique external to its very understated internal yet architecturally interesting internal structure

Thank AnnaliseE4
Reviewed 2 October 2018

After all the baroque churches we visited this little church was utter bliss. Absolutely unadorned and in its simplicity quite enchanting. A place for reflection and peace. A Must-See in Palermo

Thank Hitchcock2
Reviewed 1 October 2018 via mobile

This probably looks more impressive from outside, în terms of architecture. Inside it is very simple, no painting, no mosaic, but peaceful beauty.

Thank Anfrist
Reviewed 28 September 2018

A very small church - but one that utterly enchants. The light diffused through the small windows in the dome, the reflective quality of the stone and marble columns, the sheer simplicity of the space fulfills its function perfectly. Add in the beauty of the...More

Thank Maurice C
Reviewed 3 September 2018

The church of San Cataldo looks like a mosque because Arab architects designed it. It is actually Norman. The inside is quite stark with little decoration.

Thank CoachLo
Reviewed 28 August 2018

San Cetaldo, unlike other churches of the period, is devoid of mosaics. It has a slightly austere beauty to it. There is little to see beyond the architecture, but it is a gem.

Thank pjg3
View more reviews
Nearby HotelsSee all 1,222 nearby hotels
Quintocanto Hotel & Spa
812 reviews
.12 km away
Grande Albergo Sole
55 reviews
.12 km away
Hotel Regina
224 reviews
.14 km away
Eurostars Centrale Palace
1,194 reviews
.16 km away
Nearby RestaurantsSee all 16,436 nearby restaurants
Primius Cocktail House
163 reviews
.14 km away
Bisso Bistrot
1,393 reviews
.12 km away
Casa Stagnitta
175 reviews
.09 km away
Piazza Pretoria - Food & Ice cream
66 reviews
.11 km away
Nearby AttractionsSee all 6,960 nearby attractions
Santa Maria dell'Ammiraglio (La Martorana)
2,291 reviews
.06 km away
Chiesa di Santa Caterina d'Alessandria
234 reviews
.07 km away
San Giuseppe dei Teatini
542 reviews
.11 km away
Piazza Pretoria
812 reviews
.08 km away
Questions & Answers
Get quick answers from Church of San Cataldo staff and past visitors.
Note: your question will be posted publicly on the Questions & Answers page.
Posting guidelines