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“Fantastic tour with Etnaround”

Etnaround - Etna tours, Trekking, Excursions
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Trekking, excursions, guided tours with taste of typical Sicilian products while discovering the highest European volcano: mount Etna.
Reviewed 9 August 2014

We were picked up just before 9 on August 5 by Marco for an exciting day trip to Mt Etna. Weather conditions were perfect: not too hot and not too sunny. First Marco drove our group of 6 to a bar for a last toilet visit or a coffee before heading for the mountain. The bar served delicious espresso and Americano for an unbelievable price of just € 1.80 total for both! All the while Marco shared information about mount Etna, its history and the schedule for the day. First a bumpy offroad trip in the landrover, showing the flora on two older lava flows. Did you know that only after 500 years all plants and trees can grow on lava? The pioneer is always broom.
After the offroad we went up to Rifugio Sapienza where we took the cable car (in my view the €60 for the ticket is very expensive for a 20 minutes ride plus minibus ride!) up from 1.900m to 2.500m and than by minibus further up to 2.920m. Fantastic views, stormy weather and as expected chilly. Marco told the group a lot about recent Etna activities and about the landscape full of craters, ash and lava. There was even a spot with ice hidden under the ash! Very impressive to walk on an active volcano and still feeling safe. Constantly there was a roaring sound from the top and sometimes explosions. Normal procedure according to Marco and he explained that Etna is a friendly volcano: eruptions start not with a big explosion but a smaller. Lava flows are slow due to the low percentage of silica (yes i learned a lot that day). After this excitement back by cable car. Down at the parking we bought some delicious honey from the Etna. Recommended! We had a picnic in a lower green area, where we had the chance to try some local Sicilian food. Last but not least Marco brought us in one of the lava tunnels, another adventure under the ground with helmets and torch light where we could see a little bit history of a lava flow and the process how a lava tunnel is formed. Before heading back to Catania Marco showed us the valley of the ox an impressive lava caldera formed by two eruptions more than 60.000 years ago. Thank you again Marco for this unforgettable tour!

2  Thank MartinH1959
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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44 - 48 of 101 reviews

Reviewed 11 July 2014

We are a family of 4 from Denmark. We went on the Etna top tour with Marco as our guide. It was even better than expected and we learned so much about Etna that we didnt know. Marco's love for Etna is contageous and we were so amazed. The picnic was very tasty sicilian specialties and in a beautiful area. Marco is very good with children and our kids loved him and keep saying "Marco is EPIC!!". Driving off road in a jeep gives a much more exiting experience of Etna, and we are so happy we chose this instead of a bus tour.

2  Thank VivianJensen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 July 2014

Marco did an amazing job turning a dodgy situation into a wonderful experience! Etna had been active for the week leading up to our tour and actively erupting while we were there. Was I a nervous Mom? You bet! Did a lightening storm ensue in the middle of the tour? Yep! Did it hail? Yes it did! And yet we had an amazing time. Marco took us up the mountain in his 4-wheel drive, explained the science of lava (and why we should not be concerned about Etna's behavior, "she is a good volcano"); we utilized a small hut for our lunch (to get out of the lightening storm) and enjoyed all of the local delicacies - cheeses, olives, mushrooms, sausages, bread, etc). We were able to walk around a caldera and hike up beautiful ridges - a terrific experience for my family (including my husband and two mature children - ages 17 and 22). Marco is very knowledgeable and friendly, and anticipated all of needs. We may not have had the chance to see everything given the weather but on the way back to our hotel he took us to a coffee bar for espresso and cannoli - an delicious treat. Safely back at the hotel we enjoyed watching the fires shooting up from Etna and felt very fortunate to understand more about her. Thanks again, Marco, for a wonderful day.

1  Thank ElisainNJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 June 2014

My family of three went on a tour of Mt. Etna with Marco. It was one of the best tours we have ever been on. Marco picked us up on time in Taormina. He is very knowledgeable of the area and the mountain. He prepared a lovely lunch for us. I would recommend this tour to everyone. it was an experience we will never forget and we can thank Marco for this. His enthusiasm was infectious. Thanks Marco!!

Thank Diane4851
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 April 2014

We arranged a private tour with Marco. He was very responsive throughout the process of planning. Marco knows a lot about the area and gave us a full geography/geology lecture during the tour! It is great to have a guide on a tour like this who is ready and willing to share the knowledge. It is the details that can open different perspectives and make one appreciate the place differently. That certainly contributed to the experience. We had a great day. Picnic with the bread made in a local bakery was a nice touch. Would certainly recommend using Etnaround to anyone who would like to explore the area. Thank you, Marco!

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Thank Anastasija P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Marco P, Direttore at Etnaround - Etna tours, Trekking, Excursions, responded to this reviewResponded 24 May 2014

Thanks for the review,I am very happy you have good memories of the day spent together.
thanks again from your new friend in Sicily.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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