Acicastello and Acitrezza

Lachea Island and the Aci Trezza Stacks

The coast in front of Aci Trezza is dotted with a small “archipelago” of Stacks, called the “Archipelago of the Cyclops”. Lachea is the largest island, with an ellipsoidal shape 250 metres long and 150 metres wide and an area of just under 2 hectares. It is part of the Riserva naturale integrale Isola Lachea e faraglioni dei Ciclopi (Natural Reserve of Lachea Island and the Cyclops stacks), a protected area established by the Region of Sicily in 1998, and hosts a station for biological studies by the University of Catania. The island Lachea seems to match the description of the island inhabited only by goats found in the 9th book of Homer’s Odyssey.
Archaeological finds (a diorite axe and a tomb) were found there, showing that the island was already frequented in prehistoric times. From the Roman age, on the other hand, only objects found inside one of the island’s two large circular holes around one metre deep are left: pots, amphorae, loom weights, bone needles, fragments of a bone comb and a small oil lamp.
Like the other stacks that make up the small archipelago, the island is magmatic in origin. It might be what remains of a small magma chamber that was very superficial, known as a laccolith, dating back to around 500,000 years ago.
Faraglioni acitrezza

An ever-evolving volcano

Humankind and the volcano: how should we behave? Volcanic risk

The Grand Tour in Sicily

Summit crater activity between 2011 and 2019

The Jaci river

The senses tell The Etna Viewpoint

The senses tell Valle del Leone

The different names of the “Muntagna”

Etna, a natural laboratory where experiments can be carried out

The eruption of 1928 that destroyed the town of Mascali

Torre del Filosofo: at the base of the summit craters (2950 metres)

Acireale and reconstruction after the 1693 earthquake

The senses tell Val Calanna

The senses tell Torre del Filosofo

The “notches” of snow

Empedocles and his passion for Etna

The senses tell Acicastello and Acitrezza

A fauna yet to be discovered

The continuous evolution of the Etna summit craters

The earthquake that changed the geography of eastern Sicily in 1693

Lachea Island and the Aci Trezza Stacks

The fault system of the “Timpe” of Acireale

The Elliptical, the first great volcano of Etna

Etna: a marvellous group of different types of flora


The world’s first (almost successful) attempt to stop a lava flow: the eruption of 1991-93

The 2001 eruption of Etna, when the Mountain seemed to be alive

The Etna viewpoint

Valle del Leone and the Elliptical

The living mountain

The Red Mountains and the destructive eruption of 1669

The 1669 eruption in Catania

The senses tell Acireale

Why is Etna one of the most studied volcanoes in the world?

The senses tell The Red Mountains

Acireale and its “timpe”

The first volcanic structures of Etna, between Aci Castello and Aci Trezza

Val Calanna, the first step towards a single large volcanic structure

The senses tell The summit craters