Adventures / Adventure Tapas

Hike Mount Etna and Kayak the Sicilian Aeolian Islands

Explore volcanic peaks, black sand beaches, thermal springs and scale the most active volcano in Europe

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Trip Ref #10339

Adventures / Adventure Tapas

Hike Mount Etna and Kayak the Sicilian Aeolian Islands

Explore volcanic peaks, black sand beaches, thermal springs and scale the most active volcano in Europe

DURATION

4 nights

LOCATION

Italy

ANNUAL LEAVE

3 days off work

SEASON

Apr-Oct

GROUP SIZE

Up to 14 people

MEETING POINT

La Collegiata Hotel, Catania

ACCOMMODATION

Hotel

DIFFICULTY

Moderate

No previous experience is needed, just a good level of fitness and the ability to handle 3-6hrs of activity each day

Trek the slopes and valleys of Mount Etna, a UNESCO World Heritage site, alive with geothermal activity

Paddle along rugged volcanic coastline, explore caves and tunnels carved from lava and swim off hidden beaches

Discover the island's rich history, sample local seafood and indulge in fresh pasta and Sicilian white wine

This trip is brand new

We’re still waiting to collect any reviews from other travellers on this trip. However, all our hosts go through an extensive vetting process to ensure that your adventure is awesome.

Included

Guides

Expert, English-speaking local guides

Accommodation

4 nights in 3-star hotels

Meals

Munch on traditional local cuisine throughout

Transfers

Transfers to and from Catania, and everything in between

Equipment

All your kayaking equipment

Not Included

Flights to and from the meeting point

Travel insurance

Personal expenses

Travel to and from the start point

Logistics

Starts

La Collegiata Hotel, Catania

15:00 on Day 1

Ends

La Collegiata Hotel, Catania

17:00 on Day 5

Transfers

Your adventure begins at 15:00 on Day 1 when your host will meet you in the lobby at La Collegiata Hotel Catania. The hotel is a 15min taxi ride from the airport and a 5min taxi ride from the train station. On the final day, your host will take you back to the La Collegiata Hotel and help you to organise a taxi back to the airport or train station.

Travel options

There are regular flights to Catania Fontanarossa Airport from airports across the UK and Europe.

There is time to catch a late evening flight home from Catania Fontanarossa Airport any time from 19:00 onwards, or depart the next day.

For those who wish to avoid flying, Catania Centrale station is well connected with high-speed trains from London via Zurich and Rome. The journey will take an average of 26 hours and usually involve 3 changes.

Day 1

Hotel · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 2 – Day 4

Hotel · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 5

Departure day

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

What is the food like?

The Aeolian cuisine from the famous Islands of Sicily originates from fishing traditions and ancient Greek influence. As a result, the flavours are strong and most dishes are dressed with aromatic herbs such as rosemary, oregano, basil and also garlic, lemon, olives. Expect lots of capers and tomatoes which are typical of Lipari and beyond. There is no getting away from seafood in Aeolian cuisine. Fresh fish is always paired with the local wine such as the Malvasia delle Lipari, also known as the Nectar of Gods.

Vegetarians, vegans and other dietary requirements and allergies can be catered for - please just request on your passenger info form.

What is the accommodation like?

Catania

You’ll be staying in twin (or double on request) rooms at the La Collegiata Hotel or similar in Catania. La Collegiata Hotel is located In the heart of the historic centre, in a splendid nineteenth-century building. La Collegiata has quiet rooms furnished in a classic - contemporary style.

Mount Etna

You'll stay at the Sapienza Refuge which is a delightful alpine-style hotel, located at an altitude of 1920m. The 22 rooms, distributed on two floors, are equipped with all comforts.

Vulcano

You’ll be staying at Hotel Orsa Maggiore whilst in Vulcano. All of the simply furnished rooms have cool tiled floors and come with a small balcony or patio. Each includes a private bathroom complete with soft bathrobes.

Upgrades

For solo travellers looking for their own space, an optional private room and tent can be booked for an extra charge, see Optional Extras for the price . Please request this at the time of booking (this is subject to availability).

Day 1

First taste of Catania

Hiking

3hrs

Arrive in the city of Catania, under the shadow of Mount Etna. You’ll meet your crew at the hotel before heading out to discover the city's alternative street food scene. Explore the backstreets, underground lava tunnels and graffiti squares whilst sampling some local delights.

Day 2

Hike the volcanic island of Vulcano

Hiking

3hrs · 8km · 390m up · 390m down

Hopping on a speedy hydrofoil, you’ll make your way over to Vulcano, one of the seven pearls of the Aeolian archipelago. After settling into the hotel, it's time to lace up your boots and set off to hike Vulcano's crater rim to see the steaming fumaroles and watch the sunset over the entire archipelago.

Day 3

Take to the water

Kayaking

4hrs · 8km

Today you'll jump in a kayak onto the Tyrrhenian Sea where you'll paddle along the coastline and discover caves and tunnels carved from the lava of Vulcano. Swim in the bubbling thermal spa waters before returning to the hotel to unwind with a glass of vino and some pane cunzato - a traditional Sicilian dish.

Day 4

Sleep on Mt Etna

Hiking

2-3hrs

This morning you'll jump back on the hydrofoil to Sicily. En route to your refuge on Mt Etna, you'll make a pit stop at one of the region's famous wine cellars. Take a spin around the vineyards and get to know its winemakers and, of course, their wines! Arriving at Mt Etna, you'll enjoy an easy hike around the Silvestri Craters and grab your first glimpse of its lunar landscape of black sand and volcanic rocks before munching on another delicious dinner.

Day 5

Valle del Bove Etna

Hiking

6hrs · 12km · 300m up · 900m down

First up is a ride on the cable car to the station at 2500m. From here you'll climb to the top of the Montagnola (2640m) where you'll hike among the massive lava dunes and soak in the views of the Ionian Coast. You’ll then hike along the foot of the valley, over lava fields and through leafy beech forest before a late afternoon transfer back to Catania for your flight home.

15% Off Outdoor Gear

In need of a few more items? All bookings receive a 15% discount on us to use at Cotswold Outdoor, Snow + Rock and Runner's Need.

What do I need to bring?

BAGS
Soft duffel bag or rucksack
Daypack (35+ litres)

CLOTHES
Waterproof and windproof jacket
Fleece jacket or similar
Trousers/shorts/skirts for hiking
T-shirts
Underwear & socks
Swimsuit
Sunglasses
Sunhat
Something to sleep in
Waterproof hiking boots (worn-in)
Lightweight shoes for around town

OTHER
Universal travel plug adapter
Power bank or solar charger
Passports (and visas)
Travel Insurance documents
Suncream
Personal first-aid kit (inc. blister treatment)
Personal items (biodegradable toiletries, sanitary wear etc)
Alcohol hand-gel
Face mask
Reusable water bottle (x1 litre)

OPTIONAL
Earplugs
Energy bars and snacks
Camera

Pre-trip accommodation in Catania (Single))

Payable Before Departure

Pre-trip accommodation in Catania (Single))

Per Person, Per Night

Pre-trip accommodation in Catania (Twin/Double)

Payable Before Departure

Pre-trip accommodation in Catania (Twin/Double)

Per Person, Per Night

Optional Private Room Upgrade

Payable Before Departure

Optional Private Room Upgrade

Per Person

We've crunched the numbers to work out the total carbon footprint of this trip, and plant enough trees to suck 2x as much back out the atmosphere.

What's the number?
It works out on average at 131kg of CO2 emissions per person, including all local transport, accommodation, food, activities, guides, staff and office operations.

The only thing it doesn’t include right now is flights and travel to the destination. We do make an overall estimate across all our customers separately, but as we don’t book flights, have customers from all corners of the world, and no way of reliably knowing their travel plans, we simply can’t include an individual number in the figure on display here. We’ve got a goal for 2022 to fix that, so that when you book, there is a way to measure and mitigate the carbon emitted by your flight too.

But what does the number mean?
Yep, hard to picture eh? To give you an idea:

  • Driving 1000miles/1609km would be approx. 281kg of CO2 in an average car (or 140.5kg per person if there was 2 of you in it).
  • A return economy class flight London - New York would be approx. 1,619kg (1.66 tonnes) per person.
  • 10 trees in a temperate forest are estimated to remove approx. 250kg of CO2 from the air in a period of 5-10 years.

What are we doing about it?
Our trips are relatively low-carbon by design, and we're working with all our hosts to develop long term carbon reduction plans. For every person booked with us since 2016 we’re planting enough trees to suck at least 2x more carbon out the atmosphere than is emitted by their trips. All native trees, as part of amazing projects that are re-foresting degraded land, tackling the biodiversity crisis and supporting local communities at the same time. We go further than that too, also funding re-wilding projects worldwide to help protect important keystone species from extinction. See the reforestation and re-wilding schemes we support. See our carbon action plan.

Want to know more?
Amazingly, no international travel company has ever publicly published their carbon measurements before, as far as we know. We believe that must change, quickly. So we’re openly sharing the method we used in the hope that other companies will be able to more easily follow suit and build on what we've done so far. You'll find it all here.

You should be capable of hiking up to 12km (4–6hrs) daily without major discomfort and over various terrain. Some trails are steep, rocky, or have areas of exposure. No previous experience is needed for kayaking. People with respiratory problems may have discomfort with fumes in sulphurous areas.

Sure can! Over 50% of our travellers travel solo, it’s a great way to meet like-minded people.

From May to October the daytime temperatures in Sicily range from 22 – 30 °C and cool off to 11 – 18 °C at night. From November to April the daytime temperatures range from 14 –18 °C and cool off to 10 – 13 °C at night. Rain is uncommon, so you're sure to get a lot of sun.

For current advice about travelling in Italy, have a read of the UK Foreign Office pages here

Our recommended travel insurance provider is Campbell Irvine.

Travel insurance is compulsory on all of our adventures. Your insurance should include adequate protection for overseas medical treatment, evacuation/repatriation, your baggage and equipment and the specific activities involved on your adventure.

Your insurance policy should also include specific Covid-19 cover, including cancellation and curtailment cover if you, your travel companion or a close relative are diagnosed with Covid-19.

We fully endorse Campbell Irvine as their insurance offers all of the above, so get in touch with them or call on 020 7938 1734 to get your insurance sorted. We suggest that you book travel insurance as soon as you book your adventure, just to cover you for any last minute life changes. We know you’re an active lot and injuries do happen!

We automatically convert prices from the local currency that a host receives to your chosen currency. We update our exchange rates on a daily basis so this does mean that prices displayed on the site are subject to currency fluctuations, which is why you may see them change over time.

If you wish to change the currency you pay in, head to the bottom of the page.

All of our group adventures are specially designed for adults to enjoy (18+) as we want these adventures to bring together outdoorsy people who are truly like-minded. Children can be accommodated on some private departures.

You're in good company. Our adventures are typically made up of a mix of solo travellers and small groups of two or three friends who simply love adventure, pushing themselves and meeting awesome like-minded people. See here for more info about our lovely bunch of Much Better Adventurers.

Want to book a private trip? Just tap ‘Private Group’ in the dates and prices tab.

Your trip is led by carefully curated local hosts and expert guides. See here for more info about the guides we work with.

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