Gole dell'Alcantara

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Gole dell'Alcantara: Our most recommended tours and activities

Alcantara River Park: River Trekking and Body Rafting

1. Alcantara River Park: River Trekking and Body Rafting

If you are a sports lover, then you can’t miss this unique opportunity: body rafting after river trekking up the Alcantara River. All the gear you need and entry to the Alcantara Gorges are included so you can get the most out of your time at Alcantara River Park. After a briefing on the experience, suit up in a wetsuit, helmet, and life jacket to start the trek along the riverbed. Face the rapid water that flows over you as you go upstream, clinging to the natural holds of the basaltic rock, the result of ancient volcanic eruptions and the constant flow of the river. Overcome the obstacles that you find along the way with the help of river guides that will be present throughout your adventure. Upon reaching the point where you will begin body rafting, stop for a few minutes to catch your breath and recover your energy. Enjoy a moment of pause to better appreciate the magic of the gorges, an uncontaminated natural landscape that seems to have come out of a prehistoric era. Once ready, embark on an adrenaline dive among the rapids that flow quickly through the gorges. Experience a thrill that will always remain in your memory.

Catania: Mount Etna Volcano and Alcantara Park Tour

2. Catania: Mount Etna Volcano and Alcantara Park Tour

With an expert guide by your side, discover the Mount Etna volcano, sitting at an altitude of 2000 meters above sea level. Explore ancient craters, lava flow caves, and admire the breathtaking landscape of the Ionian coast. Explore Alcantara Park in your free time. Dissected by the Alcantara river, Alcantara Park is a location brimming with unique vegetation, lava rock formations, and columnar basalts formed by the icy waters of the Alcantara. During the warm season, cool yourself off by taking a refreshing dip in these pristine waters or just stroll alongside the river.

From Taormina: Etna Summit Area (2900m), Lunch & Alcantara

3. From Taormina: Etna Summit Area (2900m), Lunch & Alcantara

Reach the summit area of Etna, ascending 2750 meters by either cableway or off-road vehicle on this tour from Taormina. Hike the base of the active craters with a naturalistic guide, experience the lunar landscapes, and savor a typical Sicilian lunch with local wine and drinks. Begin your tour with a pickup from your accommodation (or close vicinity in Taormina and the surrounding area). You'll travel in a small group of no more than 8 people for a more intimate and personalized experience. Drive to Mount Etna where you'll start the ascent to the summit area (2750-2800 meters of altitude). Depending on the availability and the circumstances, in order to guarantee an optimal service, the ascent can be carried out either by cableway or off-road vehicles only. Once at the summit area, enjoy light trekking with a volcanological guide and a naturalistic guide. Walk through a desert of black ashes and extinct craters, while admiring the lunar landscape and the spectacular view of the active craters from a close distance. Back at 2000 meters, you'll be given the proper equipment, such as helmets and torches, to visit one of the striking lava caves of the volcano. Then, enjoy a typical Sicilian light lunch with local wine and drinks during the midday break. Finally, you'll admire the Alcantara Gorges created when thick lava flows invaded the bed of the icy river Alcantara, giving rise to geometrically perfect rocks.

From Taormina: Mount Etna and Alcantara River Tour

4. From Taormina: Mount Etna and Alcantara River Tour

Depart from Taormina and head to the Rifugio Sapienza on Mount Etna. Learn the history of the volcano and visit the sites of its last eruptions. Choose to trek along the nature paths of the Parco dell’Etna or take the cable car to an altitude of 2,504 meters and continue by 4WD minibus to the Torre del Filosofo. Get stunning views of the scenery stretching down to the sea and admire the craters and old lava flows that characterize the landscape. Explore a lava cave with all the proper equipment. Continue down the mountain and stop at the organic farm for a delicious sampling of local products, including honey, wine, and oil. Discover the different corners of the Alcantara River. Walk down small paths, past cultivated fields, and see the natural pools and waterfalls and continue to get up close to different basalt and unexpected lava formations.

From Catania: Mount Etna and Alcantara River Tour

5. From Catania: Mount Etna and Alcantara River Tour

Benefit from pick-up at your accommodation in Catania and journey by bus to Rifugio Sapienza on the slopes of Mount Etna. Visit the sites of recent volcanic eruptions and the old Silvestri craters. Choose from different options at Rifugio Sapienza and trek the nature paths of the park or ride the cable car to 2,504 meters above sea level. Continue by 4WD minibus to Torre del Filosofo for an additional fee. Get up close to the central and southeast craters and marvel at how the landscape has been shaped by lava flows. Visit locations where the volcano flourishes before you return to Rifugio Sapienza to look inside a lava cave using helmets and torches. Sample the local produce at an organic farm in Zafferana, and get stunning views of the Alcantara River. Walk the small paths past cultivated fields to see the natural pools of Gurne dell'Alcantara and the ruins of Francavilla Castle. Admire the basalt columns and lava formations of the gorge.

From Catania: Trek through the Alcantara Gorges

6. From Catania: Trek through the Alcantara Gorges

Enjoy a breathtaking hike from Francavilla di Sicilia through the uncontaminated nature of the Alcantara Gorge. Following a pick-up at your accommodation, admire the beauty of this canyon of volcanic origin carved by the incessant flow of the river. Start making your way towards Gurne, a series of natural lakes formed as a result of volcanic phenomena. Along the way, see the archaeological excavations of a Greek settlement dating back to the 5th century BC. Next, come across the ruins of the ancient Norman castle of Francavilla di Sicilia. Admire the Saje, a system of innovative pipelines introduced by the Arab people that made agriculture prosperous. Towards the end of the hike, see the Ciappa Mill where the first attempt to produce hydroelectric energy was made in the 17th century. The mill played a key role in making Francavilla and Castiglione the first villages in Italy to have electricity. Conclude the day by returning to Catania.

Alcantara River: Body Rafting & 'Pasta Alla Norma' Lunch

7. Alcantara River: Body Rafting & 'Pasta Alla Norma' Lunch

Your guide will meet you at your hotel, or a meeting place of your choice, and take you by comfortable private car the Alcantara river. The river is an ecological wonder, with limestone rocks that make it perfect for letting the rapids take your body on an exciting descent. When you arrive, our specialized guides will take you on your body rafting adventure. Enjoy the views of the rocks as this unique experience allows you to use your body as the raft, with the upmost confidence in your safety. At the end of the tour, your guide will accompany you to the nearby village of Giardini Naxos where you can have lunch with the traditional "pasta alla norma" with good local wine – a just reward for all of your exercise earlier.

Other Sightseeing Options in Gole dell'Alcantara

Want to discover all there is to do in Gole dell'Alcantara? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Gole dell'Alcantara

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 74 reviews

Hello, we really want to thank and congratulate Manuele, our guide who took care of our transportation to the activity. He was super nice, considerate and patient. He kept our things and waited for us for 4 hours without ever showing the slightest impatience. In addition, he was able to answer all our questions about Sicily, and other local legends. We also want to thank and congratulate the two body rafting guides who are real pros, attentive, considerate, responsive and adorable. Being guided in this magical place by such people really made the excursion unforgettable. ❤️

Very nice experience. We weren't so lucky in the weather, as the day started with a thunderstorm, but they phoned us and postponed the tour by 30 minutes. Very helpful, they came to pick us up in front of the door where he was staying. The guide deprived himself of his sandals to lend them to a lady who did not have them to be able to walk through the Alcantara gorges. The means of transport was a bit old, and this made the journey not exactly comfortable. This small negative note, however, does not affect the fantastic experience we had. I recommend it to everyone

Theresa is a very good guide! She speaks good English, drives the old minivan safely through the area and knows a lot! You could ask her anything and you knew a lot! Very interesting and highly recommended! The Alcantara Gorge is also super beautiful! There are a lot of stairs going down, but they are definitely worth it! We couldn't bathe because it had rained shortly before and was still cold, but I couldn't help walking through the shallow water! Was a great day!

If the view is reasonable (you can check on monitors in front of the cable car ticket sales), you should invest additional money (currently € 67 pp) and drive up to the possible 2,750m, it's worth it! Make sure you have suitable shoes with you for the gorge!

Robert Copollino was an amazing guide who made our visit to Mt Etna so special. He was knowledgeable , full of humor, supportive and a lovely person. The lunch at the winery was very good and we enjoyed the wine tasting.