Mount Etna Guide

About Mount Etna

Mount Etna is one of the most frequently erupting volcanoes in the world, with four distinct summit craters. It offers great biodiversity with numerous forest species like oak, beech, pine, holm oak, chestnut, and downy oak. Mount Etna is also one of the greatest wine-producing regions, and its wineries are located on the Southern slope. If you visit the attraction during the summer, fall or spring, you can witness landscapes varying from barren fields of lava to volcanic craters to beautiful vineyards and swatches of woods.

Due to its incredible beauty and varying landscapes, it was also featured in the space opera media franchise Star Wars. It has many trails, like Pista Alto Montana, that you can explore by mountain bike. If you're a skiing enthusiast, you can head to The Nicolosi ski resorts in Piano Provenzana-Linguaglossa and Piazzale Rifugio Sapienza which will let you explore everything you need to know about Mount Etna.

Best Things To Do In Mount Etna

Visit the Silvestri craters

If you're looking for one of the best things To Do In Mount Etna, you can visit the Silvestri craters that are two inactive craters located near the Etna cable car and Rifugio Sapienza. You can walk along the craters and enjoy breathtaking views of deep caves and canyons.

Take cable car

If you're taking Mount Etna Tour, then you will be glad to know that you can have a fun volcanic tour of the mountain by cable car. The cable car is situated at Rifugio Sapienza on the Southern side of Mount Etna. While enjoying the cable car ride, you can see the Silvestri craters and the old and new lava flows.

Enjoy Etna jeep tour

Discover Europe's highest volcano and its lava formations with the Etna jeep tour. During the 4×4 excursion, you'll pass through Sicily's famous wine-growing regions and idyllic Sicilian villages. An English-speaking guide will accompany you during the tour to let you know about the history and the myths associated with the volcano.

Explore Parco Avventura dell’Etna (Etna Adventure Park)

You can have one of the most adventurous experiences of your life by exploring Parco Avventura dell'Etna. South Italy's largest adventure park with different trails, acrobatic high-altitude paths, and two climbing walls allows you the best adventure. You can also enjoy various thrilling activities such as canyoning, caving, trekking, climbing, and an off road tour.

Ski on Mount Etna

Put on your skiing gear and descend the slopes of Mount Etna that guarantees you breathtaking landscapes. The two ski resorts of Mt. Etna, Nicolosi and Piano Provenzana that offer both downhill and alpine slopes for the perfect skiing experience are some of the best places to try the sport. While skiing through the mountain you can enjoy breathtaking views of the volcano's northern canyons.


One of the most adventurous things To Do In Mount Etna is hiking to the summit of mountain which is around three thousand three hundred and thirty-six meters above sea level. You can also hike from Rifugio Sapienza to Etna Central Crater, which is one of the most beautiful areas of the mountain. During the Mount Etna hike, you'll pass through some beautiful villages like Nicolosi and Pedara and see centuries-old lava fields.

Explore The Volcano

Another interesting thing to do in Mount Etna is discovering the volcano to see the huge lava fields and the spewing plumes of smoke and ash. Walk along the South Eastern and Central Craters of Mount Etna to see the new and the old lava flows.

Visit Etna's Volcanic Vineyards

Your Mount Etna trip won't be complete without tasting the top-quality wines at the volcanic vineyards. You can take a tour of the variety of vineyards, and enjoy the best Italian wine brands such as Etna Rosso, Solicchiata, and Nerello di Mascali. Visit the vineyards, walk around the huge barrels and learn about the wine production tradition.

Mount Etna Season Guide

Spring & Summer
Autumn & Winter
  • April-May (Spring)

April-May (Spring) is the start of the tourist season, and the weather in Mount Etna becomes a bit warmer during these months. It is absolutely worth visiting Mount Etna during these months as the area is covered with lush green vegetation. You will enjoy breathtaking landscapes varying from barren fields to volcanic craters and swatches of vineyards.

  • June-August (Summer)

This is the best time for visiting Mount Etna as the weather remains comfortable and pleasant, and there are very less chances of cloudy days. Mount-Etna is also snow-free between June and Late September.

  • September-October (Autumn)

During these months, the temperature slightly drops, but the weather is still comfortable, especially in September. You can expect cloudy, windy, and hazy days and even snowfall during October. During these months, the crowd is comparatively less than during the peak summer season.

  • November-March (Winter)

November-March is considered off-season and the crowd is less, giving you a chance to explore the various areas of the mountain without any hassle. During these months, the slopes get covered with snow, and you can enjoy various winter sports activities like skiing and snowboarding. In the winter, it's better to opt for a guided tour rather than going up on your own as there are chances of snowstorms.

Interesting Facts About Mount Etna

The following are some interesting Mount Etna facts:

  • Mount Etna is the highest and the most active volcano in Europe.
  • It is situated on the island of Sicily in Italy, outside Catania city.
  • In 2013, it was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
  • The elevation of Mount Etna is around 3,326 meters (10,912 feet).
  • Mount Etna erupts once a year on average.
  • A big eruption occurred in 1669, and Catania's inhabitants fell victim to the lava; the inhabitants of the mountain slopes died of asphyxiation.
  • Due to years of eruptions the soil around the mountain has become extremely fertile and three-quarters of the crops of Sicily are grown around Etna.
  • As per the beliefs of the locals the Roman God of Fired lived on Mount Etna and used the mountain base for metalworking.

Plan Your Visit To Mount Etna

Necessary Information
How To Reach
Essential Things to Carry
  • Timings

Tours to the Mount Etna summit usually begin at 8:30 AM and last around 6-8 hours. The timing of the 4x4 Half Day tour is 3:30 PM.

  • Best Time to Visit

Late September-October and May are the best time for visiting Mount Etna if you want to avoid the huge crowd. The weather is comfortable and warm during these months and the mountain is dotted with blooming flowers. Due to the favorable weather it is easier to hike the mountain and the prices of the nearby accommodations are also cheap. The sky is clear during these months guaranteeing you unobstructed views of the volcanic craters and the lush green vegetation.

  • By car

Drive your car to Rifugio Sapienza and park your vehicle in the parking area. Zafferana Etna is the gateway town to Rifugio Sapienza. Get a ticket for a twenty-seater off-road vehicle to the starting point of the cableway that takes you to the central craters.

  • By Bus:

VI Aprile Sangiuliano is the closest bus stop, approximately one minute away from the Rifugio Sapienza meeting point. Buses 431N, 439, 534, 2-5, 530, and more will drop you at the VI Aprile Sangiuliano bus stop. From here, you can walk to reach Rifugio Sapienza.

  • Hiking poles.
  • Warm jacket, cardigan, and a stroll.
  • Ankle-high hiking boots with a comfortable grip.
  • Hat, gloves, and sunscreen.
  • Water bottle to keep yourself hydrated.
  • Camera and rucksack.
  • Winter weight hiking trousers

FAQs About Mount Etna

How hard is it to climb Mount Etna?

It can be difficult to climb Mount Etna as you'll have to tread through rough paths, and hot sulphuric gases which might lead to difficulty in breathing. You should be in perfect health to undertake the Mount Etna hike.

What is the best way to see Mount Etna?

If you want to see Mount Etna differently, you can go on a 4×4 jeep ride, which takes you around Etna in a short time. It allows you to admire the breathtaking landscapes surrounding the venue, where you can unveil the secrets of Mount Etna. With this guided tour you can learn everything about the volcano and also lead to the summit safely.

How long does it take to walk up Mount Etna?

You can walk up Mount Etna up to 2900 meters without a guide; the walk will take at least 3/4 hours.

Can I go to Mount Etna on my own?

Yes, you can go up to Mount Etna on your own, but it is suggested to take a guided tour for the same. Because beyond 2900 metres, the path is risky, so you'll have to hire a guide if you want to climb further.

When should I visit Mount Etna?

Late September – October and May is the best time to visit Mount Etna as the weather is pleasant and the crowd is comparatively less than the peak July/August month.

Can you walk to the top of Mount Etna?

No, currently you cannot walk to the top of Mount Etna summit hike of 3,350 meters because of certain active volcanic activities. The highest point you can walk to is Torre del Filosofo at 2,920 meters on this guided Mount Etna hike.


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