THE CRATERS ON ETNA AND WHICH TO VISIT
Etna is one of the most active volcanoes in the world and as such it is famous for its frequent eruptions that give life to breathtaking shows, which under certain conditions create wonderful natural constructions from which lava comes out, the craters.
In this article on Etna we will explore the main and most famous craters that can be encountered in an experience on this magnificent volcano.
As you already know, Etna’s craters are the result of the volcano’s eruptions, which often (but not always) cause the opening of new eruptive vents on its top or sides. These eruptive vents then transform into active or extinct craters, which can be of different shapes and sizes.
What is Etna’s most famous crater?
The largest and most famous of Etna’s craters is the Central Crater, located in the summit area of the volcano. This crater has a circular shape and a diameter of about 500 meters and was created during the eruption of 1669 (the most incredible and devastating in the history of Etna).
Since then this wonderful crater has been subject to many eruptions and is studied by scientists from all over the world.
The crater of the fumaroles
Another well-known crater of Etna is the North-East crater. It is located on the northeast side of the volcano and was formed during the 1911 eruption.
This crater has an elliptical shape with a diameter of about 200 meters and is famous for its fumaroles and explosions, which can create large columns of ash and lapilli visible from miles away.
The most recent of the major craters
Another well-known crater of Etna is the South-East crater, which holds the title of the most recent crater among the most famous ones.
Located on the southeast side of the volcano this crater has a magnificent circular shape and a diameter of about 350 meters.
Its birth occurred during the 1971 eruption and since then it has been known for its frequent explosive activities.
The largest crater of Etna
The Bocca Nuova crater, also very recent, was formed during the 1968 eruption.
This crater is located near the Central Crater and is known for its impressive size, in fact its diameter is about 700 meters making it by far the largest crater among those we have seen.
Even this huge crater is famous for its explosive activity but it also knows how to give rise to truly impressive lava flows that leave indelible memories in the mind of those who have the opportunity to see them, perhaps by attending a nocturnal eruptive show from the city of Catania.
Other famous craters of Etna
In addition to the main craters we have seen, there are many other smaller ones, which can be found on the summit and on the slopes of mother Etna.
Among these, the best known are certainly the Silvestri Craters, which are located on the north-east area of the volcano and are easily accessible to tourists.
These craters formed during the 1892 eruption are known for their spectacular explosions.
Last but not least, let’s talk about the craters of the Valle del Bove, located in the eastern part of the volcano.
These craters were formed during an ancient eruption, are also a destination of interest for many tourists and are known for their vertical walls, as well as for their large size.
Is it worth visiting the craters of Etna?
There are many craters on Etna and many of them are the protagonists of guided tours that fascinate tourists from all over the world.
Besides being a great attraction for travelers and volcanology enthusiasts, these craters are a mine of information for scientists.
Each crater has its own history and charm, which make it unique and special, for this reason, a self-respecting tour cannot do without the discovery of these wonderful natural constructions and their history.