Mount Etna – a must-do excursion when visiting Sicily, Italy

UNESCO World Heritage sites are great places to visit for immersive excursions. With 1092 cultural sites, wilderness areas or a combination of both, in 167 Party States (countries that participate), there are plenty to choose from, especially in Europe where there is an abundance. One such site worthy of visiting is Mount Etna on the island of Sicily in Italy.

At 3350 metres above sea level, although not the highest in Europe (that is Teide in Tenerife), Mount Etna is the largest active strato volcano in Europe and the highest in Italy. On clear days, it is visible from half of Sicily, so even on a visit to the island you’re bound to see its sometimes snow-capped peak at some point.

But to truly experience Etna’s vastness and uniqueness as well as its historical and on-going impact on the island, not forgetting spectacular panoramic views, an excursion up to the top (or almost the top) is a must, whether you’re vacationing on the island or visiting as part of a tour of Italy or as a shore excursion during on a Mediterranean cruise that includes a port stop at Catania, Messina or even the quaint town of Taormina, where the view of Etna is fantabulous (see top pic).

Although you can drive the base of the volcano and stop at Sicilian villages, souvenir shops and other sites, much of Mt Etna is protected and can only be visited by or with authorized personnel for educational and recreational purposes. Certain areas are also dangerous for obvious reasons so, while hiking to the top of the volcano is possible much of the year, if you have the time, energy and strong knees, it is certainly not advisable to hike alone beyond the cable car station, and only designated, well-defined trails should be used.

A guided hike up the trail that follows the cable car is the best way for energetic adventure-seekers who want to experience this active volcano, but you’ll need to allow a few hours to reach the top. If you love volcanoes and want to experience more of Europe’s most active volcano, a multi-day guided trek that takes you to various craters and other volcanic features is ideal.

If you’re a less active traveller, or limited on time, a cable car ride that takes you to an elevation of 2500 m, followed by an escorted tour in a 4×4 vehicle that takes you up to 2950 metres above sea level is the best way to experience Etna. Or if you’re somewhat energetic, you can take a guided hike from the top cable car station (I’d do this). The hike beyond there takes about 2 hours, so make sure you have time if you’re on a shore excursion.

Whichever you choose, plan your trip. Book your excursion in advance, and be prepared for at least some hiking. Wear appropriate footwear, and dress in layers as the temperature can drop by 10 degrees. You’ll also need water as well as sunscreen and a shirt or jacket to protect you from the sun; and don’t forget your sunglasses.

Mount Etna souvenir shops. Photo via Pixabay.
Mount Etna road. Photo via Pixabay.
Mount Etna cable cars. Photo via Pixabay.
Mount Etna volcanic landscape. Photo via Pixabay.

Is Mount Etna on Sicily in Italy on your bucket list?

If you’ve dreamed of visiting Sicily and exploring Mount Etna, stop dreaming…start planning. Kaz Custom Travel can help you plan, create and arrange everything needed for an experience of a lifetime at this UNESCO World Heritage Area and Italy’s biggest and most famous island.

Related Posts

Most peaceful countries in the world in 2022

Most peaceful countries in the world in 2022

If you’re a new solo female traveller, you’ll likely want to start your solo travels in one of the safest and most peaceful countries in the world. Each year the Global Peace Index (GPI) ranks 163 countries around the world using 23 qualitative and quantitative criteria to measure how peaceful, and thus how safe they are. In this post I share the 20 most peaceful countries in the world according to the GPI 2022 report.

read more
8 must-do experiences in Hawaii

8 must-do experiences in Hawaii

In my last post, I shared my 4 favourite Hawaii beaches. In this post, I share 8 must-do experiences in Hawaii, 2 from each island visited on an inter-island Hawaii cruise: Oahu, Maui, Hawaii Island and Kauai. I have enjoyed 6 of these experiences, but, since I have yet to visit Hawaii Island, 2 are still on my bucket list.

read more
My 4 favourite Hawaii beaches

My 4 favourite Hawaii beaches

The Hawaii Islands have hundreds of breathtaking beaches. They range from white sand to black with every shade of yellow in between. You’ll even find red sand and green sand beaches. Although I’ve obviously not visited every Hawaii beach (wouldn’t that be amazing), it’s still hard to choose a favourite from the ones I have. But I’ve managed to narrow it down to 4 off-the-beaten path Hawaii beaches, one on each island that I’ve visited.

read more
How to recognize safari camps that serve a purpose

How to recognize safari camps that serve a purpose

Now that we’re getting back to “normal,” it’s time to stop dreaming about your bucket list trip, and time to start planning. If you’ve been dreaming of a safari adventure in Southern Africa, you’ve probably changed your thinking on how you’d like to travel. Perhaps you’re considering how you can make your experience more meaningful. Staying at safari camps that serve a purpose is a great way to ensure you leave a positive impact at the destination, not a negative one.

read more
14 Exciting Caribbean Shore Excursions

14 Exciting Caribbean Shore Excursions

You’ve booked (or you’re thinking of booking) a Caribbean Cruise on board Norwegian’s Viva for Christmas 2023. You know you’ll be visiting 7 beautiful islands in the Eastern Caribbean—Puerto Rico (where your cruise starts and ends), Tortola in the British Virgin Islands, Antigua, Saint Lucia, Barbados, St. Maarten, and St. Thomas in the US Virgin Islands. Now you’re wondering which shore excursions to pick for when the cruise ship arrives at each port of call. Below I share two shore excursions for each island you’ll visit to ensure you satisfy your thirst for adventure and get a taste of each island.

read more

CATEGORIES

Archives

Loading...

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This