Fly to Catania and short transfer to our hotel in Catania's city centre (approx. 20 mins). In the afternoon we have time to visit this beautiful city, awarded the UNESCO World Heritage status in 2002 for its impressive lava-built Baroque buildings.
Transfer to Etna South, where we clip into our snowshoes and walk along a section of the 'Pista Altomontana' (high trail), a path that circumnavigates 3 sides of Mt Etna at an average altitude of 1,800m. We walk for approx. 14km, surrounded by lush pine forests and black lava flows, which create a striking contrast with the white snow. We then make our way back to Rifugio Sapienza, set at 1900m on Mt Etna's southern slope. (5 hours, + 460m - 460m)
Today we enjoy a spectacular walk up to the Valle del Bove (The Ox's Valley), an extensive depression that opened up on the eastern side of the mountain thousands of years ago as a result of a massive landslide. We then continue up to 2,500m, where we are rewarded with inspirational views of Sicily's entire coastline and of the four craters that make up the top of Mt Etna. (5 hours hiking / + 500m - 400m)
Optional: According to the weather and conditions on the volcano, there is a chance to climb by cable car up to 2,500m and then further on foot to approx. 3,000m. You will be escorted by a volcano or alpine guide (6 hours hiking, + 450m - 1,550m). Price: up to EUR60 per person (depending on the group size), payable locally in cash. You are strongly advised to take a waterproof/windproof jacket, a warm top and to wear long trousers and gaiters.
Tranfer to Catania airport (approx. 1 hour) and fly to London.