Mount Etna and Stromboli roar back to life

Mount Etna’s eruption has caused disruption to air traffic Credit: Mount Etna is erupting/fb

Mount Etna and Stromboli, two of Italy’s most active volcanoes, have roared back to life, causing significant disruptions for travellers, particularly those flying into Catania Airport, a key gateway to Sicily.

Etna’s eruption grounds flights

Europe’s tallest volcano has seen a surge in activity over the past week, spewing ash kilometres into the air. This ash cloud forced the closure of much of the airspace around Mount Etna, leading to the cancellation of at least 90 flights and impacting roughly 15,000 passengers. Airlines like Ryanair and EasyJet were heavily affected, with cancellations and rerouted flights. While normal service has resumed at Catania Airport for now, travellers should be aware of the ongoing volcanic activity and potential for further disruptions.

What to expect during an Etna eruption

While Etna erupts frequently, it rarely disrupts tourist activities entirely. The volcano boasts over 200 craters, so even during an eruption, many areas remain safe for exploration. However, travellers should stay informed about the situation and follow official instructions from the Italian Civil Protection Department. This includes avoiding restricted areas, especially near the crater, and adhering to speed limits due to potential ash hazards.

Volcanic risk in Italy

Italy, along with Iceland, holds the unfortunate distinction of having the highest concentration of active volcanoes in Europe. The Civil Protection Department reminds citizens and tourists alike of the ever-present volcanic risk and emphasises the importance of staying informed through official channels during eruptions.

Planning your Sicilian trip

If you’re planning a trip to Sicily, consider flying into Palermo Airport, located further away from Mount Etna and less likely to be impacted by ash clouds. Additionally, be flexible with your travel plans and monitor volcanic activity updates before and during your trip. By staying informed and following safety guidelines, you can still enjoy a memorable Sicilian adventure even amidst volcanic fireworks.

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Written by

Trelawney Bresic

Trelawney is a journalist and screenwriter. She began her career at the Euro Weekly News twenty years ago and is passionate about honest and compelling journalism. If you have a news story, don't hestitate to get in touch at