The Eastern Etna Riviera
The territory of the Etna Riviera is distinguished by the presence of two elements: the volcano and the sea.
Etna, in this part of Sicily also known as “A’ Muntagna (The Mountain)” or “la grande madre (the great mother)”, is without a doubt an essential element, not only of the nature and surrounding landscape, but also of the history and legends of this land.
At 3,357 metres, Etna is the highest active volcano in Europe, and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2013. Its frequent eruptions throughout history have significantly changed the surrounding habitat, making it extremely varied in form.
Sea, fire and mountain are united in an unbreakable embrace, creating a unique landscape, almost a microcosm that sees an alternation of small fishing villages and well-known, larger seaside towns, dense chestnut forests, juniper bushes and areas covered in igneous rock, stretches of citrus groves enveloped in the intense smell of orange blossom, all merging with the deep blue Ionian sea. An environment that offers not only enchanting views and spectacular panoramas, but also top-quality agricultural produce, thanks to the particularly fertile land caused by the presence of volcanic detritus.
And then there is the crystal-clear sea, with a coastline that, starting from Acicastello, is characterised by lava formations created by the numerous eruptions from Etna, and which near Acireale reaches a height of 120 metres above the sea, known as the “Timpa”.
This part of the coast, known as the Riviera of the Cyclops in honour of the myths that surround it, is characterised by the Cyclopean Isles, which have always been one of the main attractions for the millions of tourists that come every year from all over the world.
After Acireale, the coast lowers again to become the Lemon Riviera, known for its lush citrus groves that offer a spectacular sight, especially in the winter season.