You cannot leave Sicily without enjoying it from a different perspective, for example from the highest active volcano in Europe: Mount Etna with a height of 3,340 meters above sea level. Now, it is UNESCO World Heritage Site. If you are in Catania it is very easy to get to Etna (Sicilians calls it ‘a Muntagna, which means “The Mountain”, but it is a femenine noun). I also included Etna in my travel itinerary to discover the beauty of Catania.
1. Visit the Silvestri craters. They are two side-by side inactive craters, to a height of 1,986 meters, which date back to the eruption of 1892. Their name derives from the discoverer and volcanologist Orazio Silvestri. They are located near the Rifugio Sapienza and the Etna cable car. The road from Nicolosi to Rifugio Sapienza passes between the two craters. The smaller crater, in its reddish colors, is really amazing! You can visit it entirely and you can also get into it (there is no danger, do not worry). The larger crater can be reached on foot through a steep climb, which lasts about 15 minutes. The view from there is stunning! You can see the smaller crater and the Gulf of Catania on the horizon. There are also other smaller crater in the valley of the Silvestri craters. They make the landscape even more evocative and wilder. You cannot visit the main Etna crater but, if you are lucky enough not to find fog, you can see the peak that stands out in the blue sky. Trust me, it is incredible! 🙂
TIP: Do not take the bus, but enjoy the scenery with a walk until you can. The walk usually takes about 1 hour and a half. Therefore it is not suitable for children, but hiking fans shouldn’t give up. There is only one path to follow, you cannot go wrong with that.
NOTE: There are many tracked paths on Etna. I always love trekking in autonomy. There is no danger if you follow the map.
How to get to Mount Etna:
– By car. If you are in Catania follow signs to Nicolosi, Etna Sud;
– By bus. Catch the AST Autolinea Bus which leaves from Piazza Papa Giovanni XXIII at 8.15 and leaves from Etna at 16.30. The ticket is about €10 round trip.
As a good Sicilian I love my Mount Etna. It is always spectacular, not only when it erupts. It is perfect for each type of personality and there are many things to do according to your interests. You will live an unforgettable experience!
Would you like to visit Mount Etna? Which is your favourite activity? 🙂