Santa Caterina Church

Palermo, Italy

The Church of Saint Catherine (Chiesa di Santa Caterina) is a synthesis of Sicilian Baroque, Rococo and Renaissance styles.

In 1310 the last will of the rich Benvenuta Mastrangelo determined the foundation of a female monastery under the direction of the Dominican Order. The new monastery was dedicated to Saint Catherine of Alexandria and was erected in the area where the old palace of George of Antioch, admiral of Roger II of Sicily, stood.

In 1532 the widening of the building was decided. Between 1566 and 1596 the church was rebuilt under the supervision of the Mother Prioress Maria del Carretto. The church was inaugurated on 24 November 1596.

During the 19th century the church was damaged on several occasions: during the uprising of 1820-1821, the Sicilian revolution of 1848, the Gancia revolt, the insurrection of Palermo (1860) and the Sette e mezzo revolt (1866).



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Founded: 1566-1596
Category: Religious sites in Italy

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4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Antonella AO (2 months ago)
If you go there you must pay to go on the rooftop. The view is beautiful. The service from the staff is a bit weird.
Sarah (2 months ago)
So beautiful. I was in a hurry so I only got the ticket for the roof (5 €), but you also get an impression of the inside (really beautiful and unique church) and you can enjoy sweets in the garden. Friendly staff. Highly recommended.
Grace Barresi (3 months ago)
Stunning, beautiful, magnificent church. Check out the wooden wheel to the right of the altar. The story is wheel was used to pass sacred offerings directly into the church. We heard a woman stating babies were placed from the outside to give to the church if a parent was unable to care for the infant. The dog carrying the torch in the front of the altar is also worth seeing. Definitely pay for the whole tour including the roof. It’s incredible to see the dome from above and the original, wooden roof.
meike linthorst (3 months ago)
Very special place. Beautiful church, views of the whole city and unique experience seeing how the nuns used to live. Added bonus is local snacks that can be eaten in a peaceful courtyard. Loved it
Zeh-Ty Hua (4 months ago)
Nice place to visit, even if it was crowded. No need to buy a ticket for the church if you already get one for the monastery and the roof since you can see the church from above. There is also a nice pastry place inside the monastery, which can be accessed without paying.
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