Sicily’s tallest peak is the majestic Mt. Etna, one of Europe’s most famous active volcanoes. In the 20th Century, the most violent eruptions occurred in 1910, leading to the formation of 23 additional craters. Then in 1928, a lava flow destroyed the village of Mascali, and other major eruptions have since followed: in 1981, 1983, 1985, 1991-92, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2005, 2009, 2010, 2012. We will visit the Crateri Silvestri, an area at 2,000 metres (6,000 feet).
In the afternoon, we will visit Taormina, called the true gem of Sicily. Named Taurominum in ancient Greek, Taormina is the the land of Dolce far niente (“the sweet of doing nothing”). Its elevated position creates infinite loveliness by combining the marvelous blues of the sea and sky, the miles of curving coastline, and the picturesque mountains. On one side, the splendid pyramid of Mt. Etna offers a scene of indescribable beauty. After our arrival, we will visit the Greco-Roman Theatre, Taormina’s most impressive monument. With its unique and beautiful location, it is surely one of the most striking monuments of antiquity. Next we will walk to Villa Comunale, the public gardens with a huge variety of flowering plants and shrubs. We will view and learn about all of the garden’s botanical wonders, ranging from the most common to the most exotic.