Treat yourself to this private yet affordable, VIP shore excursion! Travel back in time to see the ancient and still active Mount Etna volcano and the historic sites of Taormina!
Your English-speaking driver will meet you at your cruise port in Messina to begin your personalized experience. It will just be you and up to 7 of your friends or family on this fun adventure. Climb into a luxury vehicle and drive up the coast through the town of Giarre - known for its unfinished medieval buildings - and the village of Zafferana, a summer resort with spectacular views of landscapes toward the mountain, as well as the sea.
You will want to have your camera on hand during the entire experience, but especially when you stop at the Cratere Silvestri on Mount Etna, created by the major eruption of Mount Etna in 1892. The surreal landscape here will make you think you are either on Mars or the moon. Mount Etna is the tallest active volcano in Europe, and it is extremely active. In Roman mythology, it was believed to be the realm of Vulcan, the god of fire. The most recent eruption occurred in March 2017. As a benefit of the volcanic soil, agriculture in the area is abundant, and there are vineyards and orchards along the lower slopes of the mountain.
After your stop at Mount Etna, it is off to Taormina (a.k.a. the "Mediterranean Pearl"), one of the most well-known resorts of picturesque Sicily. You will enjoy the climate here regardless of when you visit. See the ancient Greek Theater where some say it is difficult to choose between watching the event or the panoramic, unspoiled landscape - you can see the peak of Mount Etna and across the Naxos Bay. Entrance fee to the ruins is not included, please consider an additional 10 Euro per person.
While in Taormina, you will also visit the Palazzo Corvaja, a medieval mansion that was owned by the Corvaja family for over four centuries until 1945. The stunning courtyard walls are decorated with reliefs that depict The Creation, and the Arabic influence is readily apparent in the arched windows and doorways. Since 2009, this stunning palace has been the home of the office of tourism and is also used as an exhibition center. You will have some free time to have lunch or explore on your own and buy some souvenirs.
At the end of the day, your driver will return you to your Messina cruise port. What an incredible VIP experience you will have had!
Enjoy your private driver and guide on this memorable excursion. Admire one of the most amazing and still active volcanoes in the world, Mount Etna! Bring your camera, since you will visit the Silvestri Crater and the outstanding views. Then you will discover Taormina, a very picturesque town very well known for its resorts and unspoiled beauty.