High Altitude Hike excursion will make you experience the thrill of walking surrounded by surreal panoramas. The first part of the tour takes place by cable car, from the Sapienza refuge (1960 m) to the arrival station of the Etna cable car (2510 m), from here we will proceed in trekking to visit the Piano del Lago, a vast expanse of volcanic sand that creates a surreal lunar landscape and from there we will ascend to a crater that was the protagonist of the 2001 eruption, from where you can admire the nearby summit craters and the Ionian coast. Reached the lava fields of the latest eruptions (2017-2019) you will reach the belvedere of the famous Valle del Bove, a vast depression generated by the collapse of an ancient volcanic building. The guide, having assessed the weather conditions and the group’s capabilities, can plan the descent with the gondola lift (for those less used to long walks) or trekking on sandy gullies to the parking lot.
IMPORTANT: The maximum altitude reached with this tour is about 2600 meters. The excursion, given the altitude and the relative high mountain weather conditions, is recommended for people in a state of good physical health and well equipped (possibly we have hire of insulating shoes and jackets). Not recommended for infants, young children or people with cardio-respiratory diseases
In this excursion, the first part of the ascent – from 1950 to 2510 meters – will take place with the cable car of the famous Etna cableway that starts from the famous Rifugio Sapienza. A pioneering ski lift project that has challenged the volcano since 1955. 5 times this tourist facility has been devoured by lava. The panorama of the Gulf of Catania and the slopes of the southern slope with recent and ancient tongues of lava will stand out higher and higher.
PIAN DEL LAGO | VOLCANIC DESERT
Leaving the Etna cableway station we will walk towards the Piano del Lago, so called because of the presence in the past of a seasonal lake that was formed due to the melting of the snow. After the 2001 eruption it no longer exists and has been covered by a volcanic cone (Cono del Laghetto) about 80 meters high.
CRATER OF 2001 ERUPTION
We will therefore climb the slopes of the crater of the Laghetto (about 2670 meters), a cone born in just 20 days of eruption and which has changed the morphology of the area. From here the panorama is breathtaking. You can admire the expanse of volcanic “Tefra” which constitutes the very black plain of the lake, the most recent lava flows and then them: the summit craters of the Etna volcano that stand out in front of you at just a little more than a km as the crow flies.
BEATIFUL VIEW OF VALLE DEL BOVE
Another unmissable stop, will be the viewpoint of the Valle del Bove at 2700 meters, the maximum altitude reached in our adventure. This is the best place to enjoy this extraordinary panorama of the natural amphitheater created by a series of huge volcanic collapses and cataclysms, such as to literally sink the east side of the volcano towards the sea.
DESCENT TO SAND TRAILS
The return to the parking lot is recommended for good walkers on trekking. One of the most exciting descents from the Rocca Sabbiosa. So let yourself go down, with long steps or even running, from the gullies of fine volcanic sand with the panorama of dozens of lateral craters, including the beautiful Silvestri craters and the Gulf of Catania. Guaranteed fun.
|CHD 6/13 year||€ 59|
|Private Tour (exclusive Jeep)||€ 100|
|Wine tasting light (4 wines + sicilian specialties)||€ 30|
|Wine tasting light (5 wines + sicilian specialties)||€ 40|
|Pick-up from Catania hotel (per person)||€ 15|
|Pick-up from Taormina hotel (per person)||€ 30|