As you may know, the lava spilled directly from Sicily’s Mount Etna is what is used to form our wonderful tables. So, here are 5 things you may find interesting about the volcano.
1) Tallest in Europe
Yes, Sicily is home to the tallest active volcano on the continent! It is 10,922 ft high. The volcano covers a lot of ground too, over 460 square miles. About one quarter of the population of the island of Sicily lives on its slopes.
Mount Etna is one of the most famous volcanoes in the world due to the fact that it frequently erupts and has a large number of eruption styles. The first eruption reportedly took place approximately 500,000 years ago. The most violent eruption was in 1669, the mountain erupted lava for several days – which damaged several nearby villages. On a positive note, the mineral rich lava is seen as a good thing by nearby farmers, as it makes the soil more fertile.
Mount Etna has snow on it for most of the year. The sides of the volcano are also home to a large number of animal species, and there are vineyards and olive groves near the foot of the mountain.
Mount Etna is popular with tourists, who climb or ski on the mountain. A trip to the top section of Etna is a wonderful experience — from near the stunning peak it’s easy to understand why the volcano is one of Sicily’s most popular tourist destinations. Local people often call Etna ‘Mongibello’ meaning ‘beautiful mountain’ in Italian.
The easiest way to get the mountain is via public bus from Nicolosi or other nearby towns.
Comprehensive driving directions can be found on the Etna administrative headquarters website.