How to see an active volcano- You could see lava and live to tell the tale!
The idea of seeing an active volcano may be a vaguely crazy bucketlist goal, but don’t you find it tempting?
I chose to visit Stromboli, as it’s an active volcano close to Sicily, just off the coast of Italy, that tourists regularly enjoy, and return unharmed. You also don’t need much in the way of ninja skills- it’s easily accessed by short cruises and surrounded by gorgeous islands. Your visit to Stromboli might even feature an incredible display of nature.
You’ll love the Sciara del Fuoco or Stream of Fire which is a lava crossed crater in the side of the volcanic mountain.
So here’s how to visit Stromboli and see an active volcano without dying in the process!
#Step 1: Plan a holiday in Sicily
Most Stromboli volcano tours leave from Milazzo which is one of the smaller ports, but totally charming, or Taormina which is somewhat larger. Ryanair flies in to Catania for less than 50 euros without luggage, and the bus to Milazzo from Catania Airport is only 5 euros. You could stay anywhere in Sicily, so long as you get to the port for 10 am on the day of your volcano expedition.
Needless to say, the island of Sicily is charming and draws you back in time, so no time wasted there!
Step #2: Board a tour of the Aeolian Islands to visit Stromboli
I travelled on the Stromboli and Panarea by night tour from Milazzo, which is intensely romantic. It cost only 55 euros with dinner included, in 2014, and you’ll be greeted by stunning views of the volcano effervescing into the night.
For the incredibly brave, you have the chance to climb 400m to the crater and look down on the world. There are Stromboli volcano tours that will allow you to spend the night at the top of the crater, then catch a different boat back in the morning, too.
Stromboli is a helpful volcano that causes very little harm to humans, these days, but also regularly erupts lava and puts on an unbelievable show. At the same time, it IS a phenomenal force of nature and could change at any moment, so pay it some respect! Always go with a qualified guide and check the latest meteorological alerts.
Pin image adapted from Mark Ireland@Flickr CC 2.0
Step #3: Finally, watch the sun set behind this wall of fire
During the day you’ll have had the chance to swim in crystal blue sea, or go ashore at several beautiful Aeolian Islands. There’s plenty of history and unique Italian culture to see, with fresh food to enjoy at the island cafes. But the real fun starts at dusk…
The volcano is an ever bubbling hive of activity, with a constant trickle of blood-red lava. For several hours as the sun descends it becomes a focal point in the sky. You will never forget what you’ve seen! #bucketlistgoals. As you sail back to port around 8pm, the glow of Mount Stromboli will still be reflected in your eyes.
Ready for more bucketlist adventures to inspire you?