Excursion on the North side of Volcano Etna
The excursion takes place on the North slope in the protected area of the Etna Park. The half-day tour of Etna on the North slope is easy and accessible to everyone, adults and children (even young children). The group is formed by 10 people maximum, accompanied by an English-speaking guide. Our excursion begins early in the morning, to allow you to fully appreciate the beauty and majesty of the Etna volcano.
It is a perfect tour for travelers who love nature and hiking. This visit is perfect for understanding how the Etna volcano works. You will discover that there is not only the top of the volcano to visit. Our route crosses fascinating places: you will see ancient craters, lava flows from different eras and a lava tunnel.
Etna North highlights:
- Etna english guided tours
- An easy trail (3-4 km) through lunar landscapes and lush forests, leading to 8 linked craters named “Sartorius”
- Visit of a lava cave equipped with helmets and flashlights
- Visit to the North ski resort (destroyed by lava in 2002-2003)
- Tasting of Etna's best products such as honey, wines, liquors, and more (only if you choose the pick-up at your hotel or at the meeting point in Giarre)
When do you need to book, how long before ? We do not do mass tourism. So, to make sure you have room, it is better to book quickly.
There are 3 options to visit the North Slope of Etna, in small groups (max 10 pax):
- 60€ per person: join us at Rifugio Citelli at 8:45 a.m. (Etna North), 1700 meters above sea level (there is free public parking). You will have the accompaniment of our English speaking guide from 09:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., the free loan of hiking shoes (we communicate the sizes in advance), helmet, poles, backpack, k-way included. Breakfast offered. For the rest, you must already be equipped with adequate clothing and water. For your comfort you can sleep at Rifugio Citelli
- 80€ per person: with your vehicle you reach our meeting point in Giarre at 07:45 a.m. You park your car (there is free public parking) and ride in our luxury vehicle (Mercedes GL or V-Class Extra Long) with dedicated driver. Breakfast is included in the price. You will have breakfast like the real Sicilians. Here we will provide you with free equipment for hiking.
- 100€ per person: this includes the pick-up/drop-off directly at your hotel (Catania-Taormina areas) in a luxury vehicle (Mercedes GL or V-Class Extra Long) with dedicated driver. Breakfast is included. The necessary equipment for trekking is included.
Forecast schedule of the Etna North hike
- Hike of around 1h30 on the Sartorius craters. Elevation gain: + and - 100 mt
- Walking on the lava flow of 1865
- Visit to a lava cave
- Break at 1700 or 1900 meters above sea level (you can buy your snack if necessary)
- Visit to the North Ski resort (Piano Provenzana)
A tour of Mount Etna for a moment of unforgettable adventure
Our English-speaking guide will accompany you on the largest and most active volcano in Europe describing what it means to live in a land of an active volcano, reaching the north flanks of Mount Etna.
Hiking on Mount Etna north flank
On the northern slope there is the largest birch forest in Etna. Betula Aetnensis is an endemic plant from Sicily. Birch adapts to survival in conditions of extreme heat and cold, more than other species of the genus Betula.
It is interesting to see the contrast between the white bark of birch and the black of volcanic ash. The Etna North hiking route crosses this forest. In order to understand how lava is produced and advances, a hike is planned on the lava flows of the eruption of 1865.
Your trip to Etna continues with an easy walk on the large eruptive system of multiples craters named "Sartorius", whose eruption is dated 1865. You will be immersed in large landscapes, with a superb view of the Etna volcano and the Mediterranean Sea.
Afterwards, you will head to the Etna Nord Ski Resort, where you could have a break in a beautiful chalet at 1,700 meters above sea level. Here it will be possible to buy sandwiches, drinks, desserts, coffee.
Caving exploration of a lava tube
During the excursion you will experience a deep exploration of a lava tube about 50 meters long. You will be equipped with helmet and torch. A lava tunnel is formed by a lava flow which has cooled on the surface, thus forming a solid crust. When the flow stops being fed, it empties and leaves a tunnel-shaped cavity.
Tasting of honeys, wines and liqueurs in Zafferana Etnea
If time allows, the excursion will end with in front of the 1991-1993 lava flow (18 months of eruption), with a free tasting of Etna's finest products including honey, wine, liqueurs and much more at a local producer in Zafferana Etnea.
Zafferana Etnea is the beekeepers' village on the Etna wine route. It is a free tasting, with no obligation to purchase from a product store in Zafferana Etnea (only for people who have chosen pick-up in Giarre or at the hotel). #Etna #Sicily # Etna3340
Excursion North Volcano Etna Statistics
To go on this hike, you have to be perfectly healthy, sporty and have no physical problems. Climbing is prohibited for pregnant women, asthmatics and people with breathing, cardiac and joint problems.
Etna North Trail
- Distance : approximately 3 kilometers - 2,5 miles
- Maximum altitude: 1600 mt
- Ascent : 100 mt
- Descent: 100 mt
- Time : about 1hour and 30 minutes
- Difficulty : easy
Lava Tube Etna Norh
- Length : 50 m
- Visit time : about 30 minutes
- Difficulty : easy
Essential Gear and Clothing for Etna North
- Hiking boots
- Waterproof jacket (with hood) - all cars will be equipped of light raincoats jackets
- Waterproof over trousers
- Trekking poles - all cars will be equipped
- General trekking trousers
- Caving helmet - all cars will be equipped
- Gloves or mitts
- Spare layer e.g. fleece top
- Food & Drink (not included in the price)
Meeting point Etna North
- ca. 7:45 a.m. Pick up At your hotel between Catania and Taormina (please communicate us your exact pick-up address) with our luxury vehicle VTC (Mercedes GL or V-Class Extra Long) and dedicated driver. Return around 2:30 p.m.
- 8 a.m. Meeting Point in Giarre highway exit, from Etna Fuel gasoline distributor https://goo.gl/maps/URpKmqQDdd22 You arrive with your vehicle, park it in the car park (there is free public parking) and get in our luxury vehicle (Mercedes GL or V-Class Extra Long) with certified driver. To reach the Etna Fuel gas station: Take the motorway Catania - Messina, motorway exit Giarre. Pass the toll, at the roundabout take the first exit on the right. After 300 mt. on the right side you find the gas distributor. Return around 02:30 p.m.
- 8:45 a.m. Meeting Point in Rifugio Citelli (Etna North), Via Mareneve, 95010 Sant'Alfio CT. Follow this link with Google Map: https://goo.gl/maps/tGksRc4bu62a93vZ9 Return around 1:30 p.m. (there is free public parking).
- Other pick-up places: quote on demand.
Conditions of sale
The weather and geodynamic conditions of Etna will be updated 24 hours before the excursion. If the weather conditions are unfavorable, the excursion will be postponed to another day available or reimbursed (in case of advance payment).
You can cancel and be reimbursed free of charge up to 1 week before the excursion for group excursions, 1 month in advance for private excursions. At the time of departure and / or during the excursion, for safety reasons, the guide may decide to change the route, the kilometers traveled, the walking time and the maximum altitude reached.
The guide's maximum waiting time at the meeting point (at the Rifugio Citelli, at your hotel or at the meeting point in Giarre) is 10 minutes. If you arrive late, more than 10 minutes, you will lose the opportunity to participate in the excursion without being able to request a refund.