Monday, November 21, 2016

Exploring Etna

After nearly three years of living in Sicily I still hadn't really been to the top of Etna, the mountain that looms over everything. So when I heard about a 4x4 dune buggy tour that went up the volcano, I had to try it. It was very easy to book, just looked up the phone number on the website, gave them a call (they spoke English, win), and the day of the tour they sent the meet up location. I got three friends to go, and with 170 Euro per buggy we were able to break it up and it was 85 Euro each. The tour lasted about 5 hours, which made for a really full day but everything we saw was so cool!

Playing follow the leader up to the volcano. 

Pre-ride selfie.

Riding around in an old quarry where they would pull out lava rock, what's left is mostly dust but it was really fun to drift and do doughnuts around in these very rugged (and thankfully bottom heavy) 4x4s. 

We went up to the Silvestri Crater, named after a famous volcanologist. 

Different eruptions have deposited different types of sediment and rock. 

Explorer pose at the top. 

View of the Bay of Catania. 

We also went spelunking in the Grotta dei Tre Livelli, it's a cave created during a lava flow, basically a tunnel. The lava on the outside cools first while the inside lava stays warm and keeps moving.

Gorgeous view over lava fields. 

One friend called it a "PSL for the Soul". We certainly enjoyed seeing changing foliage. 

I would recommend this trip to anyone visiting Sicily, just make sure to dress warm and bring a handkerchief or something to keep the dust out of your nose and mouth. 

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