From Catania to Giarre-Riposto, passing through Paternò, Bronte, Maletto, Randazzo, Castiglione, Linguaglossa, Piedimonte Etneo and many other Etnean small towns…
Inaugurated at the end of the 19th century to connect the above-mentioned towns, the Circumetnea Railway is a good option to take into account if you want to admire the volcano in its full splendour but from an anything but turistic perspective, on board of a characteristic old-style train. As suggested by the name (circum from the Latin “around” and “etnea”, Etnean), this railway links numerous villages situated all around Etna, but local people call it rarely “circumetnea”; in fact, since in 1937 new vehicles called “littorine” were bought, in order to replace the old steam vehicles, the name litturina became the most used to identify this means of transport.
The Circumetnea must also cope with problems that obviously arise when you travel around a volcano: eruptions. In fact, the course of the railway was interrupted and diverted over and over again due to lava flows, such as the one of 1911 that interrupted the course in Piedimonte Etneo or for example the one of the 1923 in the area of Linguaglossa or even the one that destroyed Mascali in 1928, causing also the closure of the railway station.
If this brief introduction to this unusual means of transport has intrigued you, don’t hesitate to visit the website of the Ferrovia Circumetnea to learn more about the timetables and routes and start an unforgettable journey through time around the most active volcano in Europe!
If you are interested in a tour that brings you at a higher altitude, that is around 2000 meters, you can join us in our half day tour Goodmorning Etna or in the full day tour Etna, Wine and Alcantara, that will give you the chance to discover the northern side of Etna with its peculiar vegetation and its magnificent extinct craters. In case you prefer to admire the top of the volcano from a close vicinity and go to the southern side, we suggest you to choose the summit area tour and reach 3000 meters of altitude!
What are you waiting for? Have a look at our tours and choose the one you like the most!