Mount Etna towers literally and figuratively over the Island of Sicily. Join your guide to explore Europe’s highest active volcano – first on foot, then as Sicilians have done it for centuries – on a donkey!
Rising more than 10,000 feet over sea level, Mount Etna is the dominant feature of Sicily’s Eastern half. A beloved destination for travellers for centuries, “that wicked witch”, as D.H. Lawrence called it, is continually evolving and changing as the tectonic plates below it shift. Craters that once sent molten lava flying grow old and covered with wiry scrub. Lunar landscapes give way to lush forests, deep craters look onto high peaks – an excursion to Mt Etna is a study in contrasts. On the first part of today’s tour, your English-speaking guide and driver will take you to Rifugio Sapienza, the highest point on the mountain you can reach by car. From here, you will visit the Silvestri Craters, eerie extinguished craters from the massive 1892 eruption. On the way, learn about Mt Etna’s destructive history and see the unique flora and fauna on the mountain, which in turns have been threatened and nourished by the volcano’s eruptions. Lunch will be a private picnic in an elegant setting looking across the countryside to the sea beyond. After lunch, head to Piano Provenanzo on the north side of the mountain for something completely different. Long before the Sicilians had planes, trains and automobiles, donkeys were the main means of transportation. Spend your afternoon sauntering through the lush Ragabo Forest on the back of an “asino”, like generations of Sicilians before you, and enjoy the “sleeping giant” from another vantage point.
(Toru duration: 6 hours – Tour Includes: Transfers with driver Guide, Typical Sicilian Lunch - Donkey Trekking for 2 hours)