Sitting on Piazza Verdi in the Sicilian capital of Palermo, this decadent opera house is the biggest in Italy and one of the largest in Europe.
Opened in 1897, Teatro Massimo was built in honor of King Victor Emanuel II. Its main purpose was to boost the standing of Palermo, the second-largest city in southern Italy, after the unification of the country in 1861.
The design was drawn up by Giovan Battista Filippo Basile, who died in 1891 before the project was completed. However his son, Ernesto Basile, took up the reins and saw the project through to completion.
These days there are still regular performances, including opera, ballet, recitals and concerts. Upcoming shows include La Traviata and Lo Schiaccianoci. If you don’t want to see a show you can still visit the building on a guided tour, which costs $9 for an adult ticket.
You can also add extras to your tour, such as visit to the roof terrace, which offers great views over Palermo. There is an option to take in a tour and a show, or a tour and cocktail in the Royal Box. You can take a tour everyday, 9:30 a.m.–6 p.m.
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