3.5 star rating: Worth doing 4 Reviews

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  • Location:Taormina, Italy
  • Duration:8 hours (approx.)

Mount Etna, Randazzo and Alcantara Gorges Day Trip from Taormina

Experience the peaks and valleys of Sicily in one day trip from Taormina, exploring both the foothills of Mount Etna and the Alcantara Gorges along with the Medieval town of Randazzo! Visit the volcanic canyons of the picturesque Alcantara Gorges followed by a stop in Randazzo to see the Basilica of Santa Maria. Hike into the foothills of Mount Etna, Europe's tallest active volcano, or upgrade for a chance to go up to the volcano's summit for a walking tour of the craters.


  • Day trip from Taormina to Alcantara Gorges, Randazzo and Mount Etna’s foothills
  • Explore rock pools and volcanic canyons on a walk through Alcantara Gorges
  • Visit the medieval town of Randazzo and explore its cathedral, Basilica di Santa Maria
  • Travel to the north refuge on Mount Etna, Europe’s most active volcano
  • Enjoy free time to hike around the foothills of Mount Etna on your own
  • Upgrade to visit Mount Etna’s summit with a guide and walk around its craters

Why Our Insiders Chose This Tour

Walking and climbing along the rocks of Alcantara Gorges is a great way to escape the Sicilian heat! The area is totally sheltered from the sun, so be prepared for freezing cold water if you decide to paddle in one of the rock pools.

What You Can Expect

Mount Etna, Randazzo and Alcantara Gorges Day Trip from Taormina

Visit the Cathedral of Randazzo on your Day Trip from Taormina

Meet your guide aboard an air-conditioned coach in Taormina's city center to start your day trip with a drive to the Alcantara Gorges, a series of ravines carved into the ancient volcanic rock by the Alcantara River.

Once you've paid your entry fee to the gorge, you'll follow your guide into the park to explore the canyons, caves, rock pools, and waterfalls. After your visit to the gorge, you'll head back to the coach and settle in for the drive to the town of Randazzo, near the border of the Parco della Etna national park surrounding the volcano.

Randazzo's main attraction is its cathedral, the Basilica of Santa Maria, which you will visit with your guide to learn about the columns made from lava rock and to see the 18th-century paintings inside. If your visit falls on a Sunday, there will also be some time allowed for you to go treasure hunting at Randazzo's weekly Sunday market.

From there, the coach will transport you through the national park to the base of Mount Etna, notorious as Europe's tallest active volcano, in a near-constant state of activity. You'll be driven to an altitude of 6,234 feet (1,900 meters) to the north refuge point, from which you'll be able to get a snack in the refuge cafe (own expense) and explore the area at your leisure.

There are different hiking trails to choose from, so get a recommendation from your guide before you set off. Also, be sure you've worn good walking shoes – the landscape is sometimes challenging.

If you prefer, you can upgrade your tour to skip the free time at the north refuge and continue straight to the top of the volcano. You'll ride a cable car to an altitude of 8,202 feet (2,500 meters), then transfer to a sturdy 4x4 Jeep for the remainder of the trip, topping out at 9,843 feet (3,000 meters). Explore the volcanic craters while you learn about volcanic activity from your guide.

At the end of the day trip, you'll meet your coach at the pre-arranged time and relax for the drive back to Taormina.

Customer Reviews

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2014

Enjoy the whole day. The highlight of the day was Mount Etna. We were so lucky to have had a beautiful and clear day. Would highly recommended this day tour to everyone. The tour company was excellent as they had organised the day before to pick us up from our hotel and take us closer to the pick up point for the tour.

4 star rating: Recommended July 2015

We had a really fun day on this tour. It gives you a great chance to see what this part of Sicily has to offer, cramming quite a lot in to a relatively short space of time, without making it feel rushed. The star of the show is definitely the Etna trip - it's a fascinating place even though it was extremely cloudy at the top so there weren't many views to see!. I would urge people going on this trip to bring warm clothing, even if it feels like a hot day down below, as it's very cold at the high altitude and there were patches of snow on the ground even though we went in June and the temperature in Taormina down below was 30C..

The Alcantara gorges provided a nice walk around, though we didn't think they were particularly spectacular. Personally I think the tour could ditch the Randazzo part completely as it's not an especially nice village and there's not much to do there although the stop-off does provide an opportunity to grab lunch.

I feel it important to mention that a few things mentioned on the itinerary on the Viator tour didn't actually happen. For example:
- the guide did not come around the gorges with us we were left to walk around on our own
- there was no cable car on the trip and this was not even mentioned at any stage.
- the guide did not come with us to the craters: we were basically dumped out of the 4x4 and left to wander around on our own.
- disappointingly, we did not actually go to the summit. We went high up Etna, but not to the summit. The guide actually said to someone on the way back that it is not allowed for tourists to visit the summit any more - so why advertise otherwise?

None of these issues were massively problematic and we still had a good day, but it seems odd to mention things like this on the itinerary if they're not going to be provided, or even mentioned. I would urge Viator to revise the details provided on this site, so that they match what is actually provided.

3 star rating: Worth doing May 2015

The trip was good but he only covered Mount Atna. This trip covers Randazzo and Alcantara Gorges. They never even mentioned those two places once in the trip. I paid for all three and got only one out of this.

1 star rating: I do not recommend this June 2015

I expected more. The tour had two stops before the Etna totally expendable. When we arrived it was after lunch, the worst time to see the volcano in activity. The best time is in the morning.
The tour was so expansive for little.

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Tour code: 6099ETNAVALLEY


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