Majestic Mount Etna, at 11,000 feet, is Europe’s largest active volcano. Leaving Catania, you will pass through many villages, all closely connected to the volcano’s history. You’ll drive one hour by freeway before you head up the mountain’s scenic lower slopes and incline road. Views on the way up will include a forest, orchards and vineyards. Mount Etna’s flanks are covered in cones, craters and remnants of lava streams. At 6,200 feet, you’ll stop and visit the Silvestri Craters and see the lava flow from 1983. On the way back down, you’ll pass lemon groves, chestnut trees and a pine forest, which blend with the hardened lava and endless volcanic cones. Once back on flat land, you’ll drive 45 minutes to the Gival jewelry factory at Giarre and receive a very warm welcome from the staff, as well as a complimentary cocktail. Tour the small workshop and see the jewelry makers at work. Watch as they create their individual masterpieces of fine Italian gold and unique jewelry. Learn how some of the pieces are made with Sicilian amber and shells with lava from Mount Etna. Then see their unique collection in the exhibition room and purchase a souvenir if you choose. Enjoy several tasty Sicilian specialties after the presentation, before returning to the ship.
- Wear closed-toe shoes for walking on Mount Etna.
- The ground around the Silvestri Craters may be uneven.
- There are approximately 30 steps to climb at the villa, and there is no elevator.