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Etna villages

Mount Etna Villages excursion: scenic drive through historic inland, visit of Randazzo and Castiglione di Sicilia, see where Alcantara river starts.

Etna Villages

One day Trip

A Tour that will show you the beauty of the northern side of Volcano Etna

Admire some of the historical lava flows of the volcano

Mount Etna Villages Excursion starts at around 9:00am. The Tour guide will pick you up at your accommodation in Catania, Taormina or Syracuse.

Our first stop on Mount Etna Villages Excursion is Castiglione di Sicilia. This medieval cillage is located in the middle of the valley that the river Alcantara digs between Randazzo and Taormina.  To see it from afar, it is the archetype of the typical hilltop village, with houses perched along the slope. It is a medieval city whose silent atmosphere and old monuments make it the right place for people looking for peace and beauty. Walking through the main square, Piazza Lauria, paved with lava stone, and narrow streets, you will visit the rests of Castle Leone, from the Norman era.

 

We will then closely move to admire the “Cuba”. The Cube of Santa Domenica, also called “‘a cubula” by locals, is a byzantine church, built between the seventh and ninth centuries. This also is the spot where the Alcantara river begins. Through a narrow path you can see the point where the Alcantara River starts hollowing out of the lavic rock. Here it creates those structures that, a few kilometres down the valley, are known as the Alcantara Gorges.

Here, the Mount Etna Villages Excursion will stop to enjoy a delicious tasting of Sicilian street food offered by Sicilydaybyday. Or, if you prefer, you will have one hour of spare time to enjoy lunch in the nearby.

 

The third site of the Mount Etna Villages Excursion is Randazzo, a typical medieval town on Etna. Hereyou can breathe the typical medieval atmosphere, admiring the three Mother Churches, related to Latin, Greek and Lombard ethnic groups. Randazzo houses also “The museum of Sicilian puppets”. It consists of 21 puppets, still perfectly usable, made in the early years of the twentieth century.

At lunch time we’ll offer for free a rich Sicilian street food tasting. Or, if you prefer, you will have one hour of spare time to enjoy lunch in the nearby.

When the visit will be over, you will get back on the minivan.

The return to Catania is expected at approximately 6pm.

 

If your accommodation is not in Catania, you can reach us using one of our comfortable transfer services.

 

Important Information

Recommended equipment

Comfortable shoes, cap, sun protection, water bottle, camera.

Itinerary variation

The itinerary may undergo variations based on extraordinary events, strikes, bad weather, or other unpredictable and non-voluntary situations.

Included in the price

Luxury air conditioned Mercedes vehicle or similar.

Small group tour, max 8 people

Baby Seat (if needed)

Free Snack with typical sicilian products, water and red wine from Mt. Etna

Multilingual speaking driver/guide for the day at disposal

Not included in the price

Authorized tourist guide inside the historical monuments (available on payment and on request)

Full Lunch

Entrance ticket to the monuments

Everything not specified in the include list

Suitable for

Everyone

Castiglione di Sicilia and Randazzo

Castiglione di Sicilia is an Italian commune of 3 142 inhabitants of the metropolitan city of Catania in Sicily.

The town is part of the circuit of the most beautiful suburbs in Italy and the territory of the commune of Castiglione of Sicily has been declared of “notable public importance” (decree regional 21 June 1994). Castiglione is situated on a hill on the slope north of the Etna, in the middle of the Valley that the river Alcantara ploughs between Randazzo and Taormina; it is one of the communes of the Park of the Etna and the river Park of the Alcantara. It is 50 km far from Catania and 60 km from Messina. Other protected areas belong to the town territory: Pineta of Linguaglossa, Dammusi, Fascia Altomontana Etna, Contrada Sorbera and Contrada Gibiotti.

 

Randazzo is a town and comune in the Metropolitan City of Catania. It is situated at the northern foot of Mount Etna.

In the 13th century the town had its own army, which fought in favor of the king against the rebels. In 1210 King Frederick II of Hohenstaufen and his young wife Constance of Aragon sheltered at Randazzo to escape the terrible plague which raged in Palermo.

Randazzo became one of the most densely populated towns in the island, after Palermo and Messina. The town was also divided into three main districts: the Greeks lived in St. Nicola’s quarter, the Latins in St. Mary’s and the Lombards in St. Martin’s.

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