Volcanoes of Italy - The Grand Tour: photo diary of our October 2018 tour

Most autumns we organise a 15 days study and walking tour to the volcanoes of Southern Italy, starting in Naples where we visit Vesuvius and the Phlegrean fields before sailing of to the Aeolian islands to explore Lipari, Vulcano and Stromboli before our grand finale on the summit of Mt Etna in Sicily. Besides an unrivaled diversity of volcanic deposits, structures and phenomena this tour also includes many archaeological, relaxing, cultural and gastronomic excursions - combining all the best aspects of southern Italy! Our 12 - 26 October 2018 tour was guided by volcanologist Dr Ingrid Smet who put together the below photo diary of the trip - we hope you enjoy it!
When the plane prepares for the landing we get our first views of Mt Veusvius towering majestically over the city of Naples. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
When the plane prepares for the landing we get our first views of Mt Veusvius towering majestically ... [info]
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Upon arrival we use the afternoon to explore the city of Naples which historical center is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Upon arrival we use the afternoon to explore the city of Naples which historical center is a UNESCO ... [info]
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The town is dotted with beautiful churches in different architectural styles. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The town is dotted with beautiful churches in different architectural styles. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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The narrow streets in between centuries old multistory buildings are full of activity, also above the ground on the countless balconies. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The narrow streets in between centuries old multistory buildings are full of activity, also above th... [info]
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Underneath the facade of Naples' traditional buildings one can recognise the ca. 15,000 year old Neapolitan Yellow Tuff and clay bricks - the exact same building materials used by the Romans in Pompeii and Herculaneum! (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Underneath the facade of Naples' traditional buildings one can recognise the ca. 15,000 year old Nea... [info]
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Other local volcanic rocks used to build the city of Naples are the big slabs of lava making up the surface of many narrow streets. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Other local volcanic rocks used to build the city of Naples are the big slabs of lava making up the ... [info]
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Getting lost in the interesting street lay-out of the historic centre of Naples. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Getting lost in the interesting street lay-out of the historic centre of Naples. (Photo: Ingrid Smet... [info]
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One can purchase fresh produce from the surrounding countryside on almost any corner street corner in Naples. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
One can purchase fresh produce from the surrounding countryside on almost any corner street corner i... [info]
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... an impressive public shopping gallery with a large glass-vaulted dome and wings built at the end of the 19th century. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
... an impressive public shopping gallery with a large glass-vaulted dome and wings built at the end... [info]
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We pass many of the scenic squares and beautiful buildings in the historic center of Naples on our way to the welcome dinner... (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
We pass many of the scenic squares and beautiful buildings in the historic center of Naples on our w... [info]
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... where we raise our glasses to a great 2 weeks tour and enjoy the first of many delicious Italian meals. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
... where we raise our glasses to a great 2 weeks tour and enjoy the first of many delicious Italian... [info]
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The silhouette of Mt Vesuvius forms the backdrop of the ruins of Pompeii, the famous Roman town that was destroyed by this volcano in 79 AD. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The silhouette of Mt Vesuvius forms the backdrop of the ruins of Pompeii, the famous Roman town that... [info]
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Despite the destructive power of the eruption, some valuable artifacts were preserved in the larger villas of Pompeii such as this intricate mosaic altar. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Despite the destructive power of the eruption, some valuable artifacts were preserved in the larger ... [info]
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Ancient people used the same materials to construct Pompeii as the Italians did in Naples a few centuries ago: dark lava blocks for the streets and a combination of clay bricks and volcanic tuffs for the buildings. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Ancient people used the same materials to construct Pompeii as the Italians did in Naples a few cent... [info]
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Taking in all the information shared by our Naples based historic guide Florian at the smaller theater of Pompeii. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Taking in all the information shared by our Naples based historic guide Florian at the smaller theat... [info]
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The breathtaking frescos for which Villa dei Misteri, a suburban villa on the outskirts of Pompeii, is world famous. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The breathtaking frescos for which Villa dei Misteri, a suburban villa on the outskirts of Pompeii, ... [info]
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... by having an elaborate lunch prepared according to the cooking recipes from Roman times. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
... by having an elaborate lunch prepared according to the cooking recipes from Roman times. (Photo:... [info]
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In the afternoon we visit the small museum Antiquarium di Boscoreale where numerous finds from the excavations of Pompeii give a unique insight into every day Roman life prior to the Vesuvius eruption. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
In the afternoon we visit the small museum Antiquarium di Boscoreale where numerous finds from the e... [info]
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An untouched, ca 1950 years old, freshly baked bread with incisions to devide it in 8 pieces copper tableware with bright blue mineralisations. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
An untouched, ca 1950 years old, freshly baked bread with incisions to devide it in 8 pieces copper ... [info]
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A very lifelike bronze bust statue of a young man seems to be staring right back at you with a faint smile. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
A very lifelike bronze bust statue of a young man seems to be staring right back at you with a faint... [info]
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View over the bay of Pozzuoli and the central area of the Phlegrean fields, represented by the superimposed large, partially submarine, calderas formed during powerful eruptions 39,000 and 15,000 years ago. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View over the bay of Pozzuoli and the central area of the Phlegrean fields, represented by the super... [info]
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View onto the small volcanic isle of Nisida, one of the 4 Phlegraean islands located in the bay of Pozzuoli. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View onto the small volcanic isle of Nisida, one of the 4 Phlegraean islands located in the bay of P... [info]
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There are about 150 pools of boiling mud dotted around the ca 17 km by 20 km large caldera which represents the Phlegraean fields, hydrothermal surface expressions of the hot magma that still resides at depth. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
There are about 150 pools of boiling mud dotted around the ca 17 km by 20 km large caldera which rep... [info]
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Group photo in front of one of the Phlegraean fiels' many hydrothermal areas with volcanic degassing, sulphur mineralisations and bubbling mud pools. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Group photo in front of one of the Phlegraean fiels' many hydrothermal areas with volcanic degassing... [info]
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At Pozzuoli the effects of 'Bradyseism' - rapidly rising or lowering of the surface due to injection of new magma or draining of old magma - are shown in the marble pillars of a Roman market that bears the scars of once having been submerged below sea level. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
At Pozzuoli the effects of 'Bradyseism' - rapidly rising or lowering of the surface due to injection... [info]
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View from the foot of the 1538 Monte Nuovo scoria cone towards the western side of the bay of Pozzuoli and Capo Miseno. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View from the foot of the 1538 Monte Nuovo scoria cone towards the western side of the bay of Pozzuo... [info]
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Watching the sun set from Capo Miseno, the location from where Pliny observed Vesuvius' 79 AD eruption plume. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Watching the sun set from Capo Miseno, the location from where Pliny observed Vesuvius' 79 AD erupti... [info]
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The sand beach at Miseno in the golden light of sunset, looking towards the volcanic islands of Procida (centre foreground) and Ischia (double hill silhouette in centre background). (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The sand beach at Miseno in the golden light of sunset, looking towards the volcanic islands of Proc... [info]
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View from the base of the present day Vesuvius cone to the west with the reforested 1944 lava flow in the foreground and the city and Bay of Naples in the background. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View from the base of the present day Vesuvius cone to the west with the reforested 1944 lava flow i... [info]
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Purple autumn flower growing at the foot of the present day Vesuvius cone (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Purple autumn flower growing at the foot of the present day Vesuvius cone (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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The valley between the present day Vesuvius summit cone and the remnants of the caldera wall of the predecessor Somma volcano is called the Valle dell'Inferno (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The valley between the present day Vesuvius summit cone and the remnants of the caldera wall of the ... [info]
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Looking northeastward from the base of the Vesuvius cone one can see how the old Somma caldera wall is built up from numerous layers of volcanic deposits cross cut by sub-vertical magma dykes (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Looking northeastward from the base of the Vesuvius cone one can see how the old Somma caldera wall ... [info]
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View into the active central vent of the summit cone of Vesuvius volcano (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View into the active central vent of the summit cone of Vesuvius volcano (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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A colorful range of volcanic deposits has built up the crater rim of Vesuvius' active vent throughout the volcano's recent eruptive history. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
A colorful range of volcanic deposits has built up the crater rim of Vesuvius' active vent throughou... [info]
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View from the summit of Mt Vesuvius to the south-southwest towards the peninsula of Sorrento and the island of Capri. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View from the summit of Mt Vesuvius to the south-southwest towards the peninsula of Sorrento and the... [info]
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Descend from the summit of Vesuvius in the volcano's this ash deposits with the eastern end of the Somma caldera in the center. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Descend from the summit of Vesuvius in the volcano's this ash deposits with the eastern end of the S... [info]
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Blue grape variety of local origin typical of the Vesuvian area. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Blue grape variety of local origin typical of the Vesuvian area. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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Whilst we taste the excellent wines that are produced on Vesuvius's fertile soil ... (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Whilst we taste the excellent wines that are produced on Vesuvius's fertile soil ... (Photo: Ingrid ... [info]
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... we also sample the excellent local vegetables and olive oil used to make bruschetta ... (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
... we also sample the excellent local vegetables and olive oil used to make bruschetta ... (Photo: ... [info]
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... and a delicious home made pasta with only fresh ingredients! (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
... and a delicious home made pasta with only fresh ingredients! (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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As the type of volcanic deposit that buried this Roman town is different from the one that initially covered Pompeii, the ruins of Herculaneum consist of more well preserved multi-story buildings. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
As the type of volcanic deposit that buried this Roman town is different from the one that initially... [info]
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This smaller town had many shops as well as elaborate bath house complexes (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
This smaller town had many shops as well as elaborate bath house complexes (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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The black charcoal frames around some windows and doors are the original ca 2000 year old wood that burned from the heat of the volcanic deposits by which it was covered (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The black charcoal frames around some windows and doors are the original ca 2000 year old wood that ... [info]
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The ancient graffiti on the outside of this shop depicts the different beverages and their prices that could be purchased inside - the Romans also like Vesuvius wine. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The ancient graffiti on the outside of this shop depicts the different beverages and their prices th... [info]
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Whilst the wall of this building was constructed  with the yellow tuff that erupted from the Phlegraean fields some 15,000 years ago, the metal window grid got covered by ash and lapilli from the 79 AD eruption of Mt Vesuvius. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Whilst the wall of this building was constructed with the yellow tuff that erupted from the Phlegra... [info]
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Walking along the streets of the archaeological site of Herculaneum. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Walking along the streets of the archaeological site of Herculaneum. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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A stunning and colourful mosaic forms the centre piece of the atrium of a wealthy Roman citizen or businessman (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
A stunning and colourful mosaic forms the centre piece of the atrium of a wealthy Roman citizen or b... [info]
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Beautiful black and white mosaic floor in one of the bath house complexes of Herculaneum (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Beautiful black and white mosaic floor in one of the bath house complexes of Herculaneum (Photo: Ing... [info]
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One of the many fountains which are meeting points for the young Neapolitans. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
One of the many fountains which are meeting points for the young Neapolitans. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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The facade of this church in the center of Naples is built in the characteristic Neapolitan Yellow Tuff, erupted ca 15,000 years ago from the Phlegraean fields. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The facade of this church in the center of Naples is built in the characteristic Neapolitan Yellow T... [info]
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Inner courtyard of one of the centuries' old palazzos in the centre of Naples. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Inner courtyard of one of the centuries' old palazzos in the centre of Naples. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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The historic center of Naples is contains many stately buildings and little squares with cozy bars. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The historic center of Naples is contains many stately buildings and little squares with cozy bars. ... [info]
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Lively historic centre of Naples with its typical architecture, warm colours and plenty balconies (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Lively historic centre of Naples with its typical architecture, warm colours and plenty balconies (P... [info]
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Facade of the early 14th century cathedral of Naples (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Facade of the early 14th century cathedral of Naples (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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Gothic architecture of the main nave and aisles of the cathedral of Naples. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Gothic architecture of the main nave and aisles of the cathedral of Naples. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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Burning candles at one of the altars in the cathedral of Naples. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Burning candles at one of the altars in the cathedral of Naples. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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Saying goodbye to Naples' busy historic streets with balconies and laundry before we set of to the Eolian islands. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Saying goodbye to Naples' busy historic streets with balconies and laundry before we set of to the E... [info]
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View of part of the main town of Lipari and one of the island's many lava domes (center) upon arriving by night ferry from Naples. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View of part of the main town of Lipari and one of the island's many lava domes (center) upon arrivi... [info]
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We use the afternoon to explore the northeastern tip of Lipari island, where ca 1300 years ago the last volcanic activity erupted a large rhyolitic pumice cone eventually covered by a ca 20 m thick obsidian flow. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
We use the afternoon to explore the northeastern tip of Lipari island, where ca 1300 years ago the l... [info]
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The voluminous pumice deposits have been extensively quarried - one of the island's main economies until all pumice quarries were forcefully shut when the Eolian islands became UNESCO world heritage about a decade ago. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The voluminous pumice deposits have been extensively quarried - one of the island's main economies u... [info]
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Large boulders at the peripheral parts of the obsidian flow show interesting textures and preserved flow patterns. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Large boulders at the peripheral parts of the obsidian flow show interesting textures and preserved ... [info]
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View from the northeastern tip of Lipari towards the large, now abandoned, pumice quarry and transport facilities to the south. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View from the northeastern tip of Lipari towards the large, now abandoned, pumice quarry and transpo... [info]
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Local fisherman at the beach of Porticello, Lipari. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Local fisherman at the beach of Porticello, Lipari. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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Purple flowers hanging from the gardens at our hotel. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Purple flowers hanging from the gardens at our hotel. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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Cross section of a thick lava flow on Vulcano island, showing the radially organized cooling joints. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Cross section of a thick lava flow on Vulcano island, showing the radially organized cooling joints.... [info]
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View from the base of the La Fossa cone to its summit. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View from the base of the La Fossa cone to its summit. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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Dried thistles on the island of Vulcano. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Dried thistles on the island of Vulcano. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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Group picture near the summit of the active crater on Vulcano, with the island of Lipari in the background. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Group picture near the summit of the active crater on Vulcano, with the island of Lipari in the back... [info]
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The northern part of the crater rim is the scene of intense volcanic degassing from numerous fumaroles. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The northern part of the crater rim is the scene of intense volcanic degassing from numerous fumarol... [info]
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The hot volcanic gasses are rich in sulphur which is deposited on the surface around the fumaroles. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The hot volcanic gasses are rich in sulphur which is deposited on the surface around the fumaroles. ... [info]
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The yellow needle-like sulfur crystals reveal that the temperature in this crack has not gone below 90 degrees C, as the sulfur would have otherwise take a more isometric shape (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The yellow needle-like sulfur crystals reveal that the temperature in this crack has not gone below ... [info]
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Although unpleasant, the volcanic gasses are not dangerous so one can walk in between the fumaroles along the crater rim... (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Although unpleasant, the volcanic gasses are not dangerous so one can walk in between the fumaroles ... [info]
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Panormaic view taken from the highest point on the rim, with the active La Fossa crater in the foreground and the islands of Lipari and Salina in the background (right). (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Panormaic view taken from the highest point on the rim, with the active La Fossa crater in the foreg... [info]
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Completing our hike around the La Fossa crater with the young volcanic peninsula of Vulcanello (centre left) and Lipari (top left) in the background. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Completing our hike around the La Fossa crater with the young volcanic peninsula of Vulcanello (cent... [info]
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Group picture around a massive lava bomb that landed on the crater rim of La Fossa during one of Vulcano's historic eruptions. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Group picture around a massive lava bomb that landed on the crater rim of La Fossa during one of Vul... [info]
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Hiking back down from the summit of the La Fossa cone. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Hiking back down from the summit of the La Fossa cone. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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Ongoing volcanic activity on Vulcano island is reflected in the many areas of fumarolic activity and the hydrothermal mud baths along the beach near Vulcanello. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Ongoing volcanic activity on Vulcano island is reflected in the many areas of fumarolic activity and... [info]
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Despite the unpleasant smell of rotten eggs many travelers spend some time enjoying the health benefits of the hydrothermal mud baths at Vulcano. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Despite the unpleasant smell of rotten eggs many travelers spend some time enjoying the health benef... [info]
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Seagull at a beach on Vulcano. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Seagull at a beach on Vulcano. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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Entrance to the medieval castle of Lipari, built atop the ruins of both Roman and ancient Greek fortifications. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Entrance to the medieval castle of Lipari, built atop the ruins of both Roman and ancient Greek fort... [info]
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The castle of Lipari, built atop a high promontory of lava rocks, has a rich cultural history ... (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The castle of Lipari, built atop a high promontory of lava rocks, has a rich cultural history ... (P... [info]
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... and nowadays houses the archaeological museum of the Eolian islands which represents one of the most important collections of ancients finds from the Mediterranean. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
... and nowadays houses the archaeological museum of the Eolian islands which represents one of the ... [info]
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All historic treasures of the museum of Lipari are safely guarded by this feline local. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
All historic treasures of the museum of Lipari are safely guarded by this feline local. (Photo: Ingr... [info]
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We conclude our second day of exploring the Eolian volcanoes with another delicious seafood dinner. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
We conclude our second day of exploring the Eolian volcanoes with another delicious seafood dinner. ... [info]
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As our morning boat to Stromboli was cancelled due to strong wind, we used the morning to further explore the charming town of Lipari. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
As our morning boat to Stromboli was cancelled due to strong wind, we used the morning to further ex... [info]
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Lipari cat basking in the sun shine. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Lipari cat basking in the sun shine. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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Capers are the number one delicacy produced and sold on the Aeolian islands! (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Capers are the number one delicacy produced and sold on the Aeolian islands! (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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The architecture on the Aeolian islands is different from the one on Naples and has more arabic influences, although narrow streets and balconies remain an important characteristic. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The architecture on the Aeolian islands is different from the one on Naples and has more arabic infl... [info]
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... where upon arrival we quickly drop our luggage at the hotel and hike up to a viewpoint along the Sciara where Stromboli pays us his usual fiery welcome! (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
... where upon arrival we quickly drop our luggage at the hotel and hike up to a viewpoint along the... [info]
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Dinner the first night on Stromboli is traditionally at the only pizzeria in the world from where one can enjoy a good meal and watch a volcano's fireworks simultaneously! (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Dinner the first night on Stromboli is traditionally at the only pizzeria in the world from where on... [info]
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The next morning is a perfectly clear sunny autumn day, great conditions to hike up to the volcano's summit in the afternoon! (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The next morning is a perfectly clear sunny autumn day, great conditions to hike up to the volcano's... [info]
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Colourful flowers are still blooming in autumn. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Colourful flowers are still blooming in autumn. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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... from where we now have a daytime view onto the northern edge of the crater terrace from where an ashplume (grey) active fumaroles (white smoke) welcome us. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
... from where we now have a daytime view onto the northern edge of the crater terrace from where an... [info]
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Looking down the Sciara del Fuoco we see the darker coloured lava flows on its northern edge which erupted during the rare lava flow phases in the past 2 decades. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Looking down the Sciara del Fuoco we see the darker coloured lava flows on its northern edge which e... [info]
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At the 400 m viewpoint we are joined by our mountain guide Adriano who gives us a great explanation about the volcano before taking us up to the summit of Stromboli. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
At the 400 m viewpoint we are joined by our mountain guide Adriano who gives us a great explanation ... [info]
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The trail soon becomes narrower and steeper as we follow the northeastern rim of the large collapse scar 'Sciara del Fuoco'. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The trail soon becomes narrower and steeper as we follow the northeastern rim of the large collapse ... [info]
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Stromboli's summit area consists of a half circle rim or amphitheater, the remnants of older calderas, from where the activity of the active vents on the present day crater terrace can be observed. With beautiful weather like today, there are many groups who make the hike to the summit! (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Stromboli's summit area consists of a half circle rim or amphitheater, the remnants of older caldera... [info]
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As the sun is slowly setting the triangular shadow of volcano falls over the island's eastern rim and the main village. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
As the sun is slowly setting the triangular shadow of volcano falls over the island's eastern rim an... [info]
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We put on some warmer clothes and are ready to undertake the final hike to the summit... (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
We put on some warmer clothes and are ready to undertake the final hike to the summit... (Photo: Ing... [info]
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... as we are currently at the same elevation of the north eastern crater behind which the sun is setting ... (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
... as we are currently at the same elevation of the north eastern crater behind which the sun is se... [info]
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Sun almost setting behind the active northeast crater on Stromboli's summit. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Sun almost setting behind the active northeast crater on Stromboli's summit. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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Group picture on the summit of Stromboli - we all made it! (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Group picture on the summit of Stromboli - we all made it! (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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By sunset we have reached the summit and found our positions on the rim above the crater terrace... (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
By sunset we have reached the summit and found our positions on the rim above the crater terrace... ... [info]
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... from where we are settling to observe and photograph the volcanic fireworks for the next ca 1,5 hours. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
... from where we are settling to observe and photograph the volcanic fireworks for the next ca 1,5 ... [info]
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As night falls we look out over the crater terrace, not knowing from which vent the next volcanic fireworks will occur. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
As night falls we look out over the crater terrace, not knowing from which vent the next volcanic fi... [info]
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At times there are even 2 vents that simultaneously have Strombolian explosions (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
At times there are even 2 vents that simultaneously have Strombolian explosions (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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A Strombolian explosion occurs when gas rising up in the lava conduit system collects in a large bubble which eventually bursts through the surface and entrails red hot lava. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
A Strombolian explosion occurs when gas rising up in the lava conduit system collects in a large bub... [info]
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A large explosions showers the northeast crater in red hot lava spatter whilst the glow from one of the vents in the central crater can also be seen. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
A large explosions showers the northeast crater in red hot lava spatter whilst the glow from one of ... [info]
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Sailing clockwise around Stromboli we can observe the different volcanic layers that have built up this majestic volcano over the past ca 160,000 years. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Sailing clockwise around Stromboli we can observe the different volcanic layers that have built up t... [info]
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The captain of our private boat, Frank International, and our historic tour guide from Naples enjoying the morning boat trip. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The captain of our private boat, Frank International, and our historic tour guide from Naples enjoyi... [info]
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The different volcanic layers reveal the long history of volcanic activity that constructed the present day island of Stromboli. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The different volcanic layers reveal the long history of volcanic activity that constructed the pres... [info]
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Observing and discussing the different volcanic deposits and textures visible along the island's coast as we sail around it. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Observing and discussing the different volcanic deposits and textures visible along the island's coa... [info]
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We go on land to explore this small village of about 30 year round inhabitants. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
We go on land to explore this small village of about 30 year round inhabitants. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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The architecture on the island of Stromboli resembles that of the Cycladic islands on Greece: square looking white buildings with blue doors and windows. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The architecture on the island of Stromboli resembles that of the Cycladic islands on Greece: square... [info]
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Colourful flowers in Ginostra. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Colourful flowers in Ginostra. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
(79 Hits)
We continue our private boat trip around Stromboli ... (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
We continue our private boat trip around Stromboli ... (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
(92 Hits)
... before we head out to take a closer look at Strombolicchio, the volcanic neck that is the only remnant of the volcano that was active 100,000s of years ago before Stromboli. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
... before we head out to take a closer look at Strombolicchio, the volcanic neck that is the only r... [info]
(113 Hits)
Sea gulls enjoying the sunshine from the rocks around Strombolicchio. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Sea gulls enjoying the sunshine from the rocks around Strombolicchio. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
(85 Hits)
The 'heart of Stromboli' can be found in the ca. 200,000 years old lavas of Strombolicchio. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The 'heart of Stromboli' can be found in the ca. 200,000 years old lavas of Strombolicchio. (Photo: ... [info]
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The outer zone of the volcanic neck of Strombolicchio is red-oxidised whilst the inner grey part clearly shows subvertical cooling joints. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The outer zone of the volcanic neck of Strombolicchio is red-oxidised whilst the inner grey part cle... [info]
(83 Hits)
... where Barbara welcomes us in her traditional Aeolian home and... (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
... where Barbara welcomes us in her traditional Aeolian home and... (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
(72 Hits)
... and treats us to a delicious home cooked lunch! A perfect end to our time on the active volcano of Stromboli. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
... and treats us to a delicious home cooked lunch! A perfect end to our time on the active volcano ... [info]
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The next morning we took the early boat from Stromboli to Milazzo and from there a private transfer to our hotel on the slopes of Mt Etna at about 2000 masl. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The next morning we took the early boat from Stromboli to Milazzo and from there a private transfer ... [info]
(84 Hits)
Despite the somewhat grey and windy weather we decide to do an afternoon hike to the southern edge of the Valle del Bove. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Despite the somewhat grey and windy weather we decide to do an afternoon hike to the southern edge o... [info]
(79 Hits)
The Valle del Bove is a large collapse scar on Etna's eastern flank and which has been filled with lava flows from Etna's more powerful summit eruptions of the past decades. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The Valle del Bove is a large collapse scar on Etna's eastern flank and which has been filled with l... [info]
(71 Hits)
Group picture at the view point over the Valle del Bove. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Group picture at the view point over the Valle del Bove. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
(73 Hits)
The darker lava flows running down into the Sciara del Fuoco (centre) are the most recent ones whereas the partially overgrown volcanic deposits (left) are crosscut by subvertical dykes and date back to older volcanic phases (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The darker lava flows running down into the Sciara del Fuoco (centre) are the most recent ones where... [info]
(78 Hits)
Before we return to our hotel the clouds that had previously covered Etna's summit area partially lift and uncover the snow covered goal of our next day's hike. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Before we return to our hotel the clouds that had previously covered Etna's summit area partially li... [info]
(78 Hits)
From there we take a special motorized bus-like vehicle that takes us up to about 3000 masl, the plateau on top of which the 4 summit craters of Mt Etna rise another 300 m higher. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
From there we take a special motorized bus-like vehicle that takes us up to about 3000 masl, the pla... [info]
(83 Hits)
With our private mountain guide we start our hike up to the summit of the Bocca Nuovo - Voragine crater complex. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
With our private mountain guide we start our hike up to the summit of the Bocca Nuovo - Voragine cra... [info]
(85 Hits)
The fresh snow is already covered with a thing layer of volcanic ash, showing that Mt Etna is rather active. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The fresh snow is already covered with a thing layer of volcanic ash, showing that Mt Etna is rather... [info]
(84 Hits)
Taking a short break during the hike as the high elevation makes it more strenuous ... (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Taking a short break during the hike as the high elevation makes it more strenuous ... (Photo: Ingri... [info]
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Intricately wind-shaped ice crystals cling to the rocks forming the rim of the Bocca Nuovo crater. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Intricately wind-shaped ice crystals cling to the rocks forming the rim of the Bocca Nuovo crater. (... [info]
(79 Hits)
We walk clockwise along the rim of the Bocca Nuova crater from where the strongly degassing active vent has intermittent explosions. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
We walk clockwise along the rim of the Bocca Nuova crater from where the strongly degassing active v... [info]
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Snow on Etna's summit is shaped by the wind into elongated ice crystals. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Snow on Etna's summit is shaped by the wind into elongated ice crystals. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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Walking on the rim of the Bocca Nuova crater, looking back to Etna's southern slopes. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Walking on the rim of the Bocca Nuova crater, looking back to Etna's southern slopes. (Photo: Ingrid... [info]
(84 Hits)
Etna specialist and tour organiser Emanuela Carone explains the eruptive history, deposits and recent changes of the volcano throughout our summit hike. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Etna specialist and tour organiser Emanuela Carone explains the eruptive history, deposits and recen... [info]
(99 Hits)
View from the Voragine crater (behind photographer) towards the NEt crater. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View from the Voragine crater (behind photographer) towards the NEt crater. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
(72 Hits)
Continuous degassing and fumarolic activity arund the summit craters melts holes in the fresh snow blanket. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Continuous degassing and fumarolic activity arund the summit craters melts holes in the fresh snow b... [info]
(81 Hits)
View from the saddle between the NE and Voragine craters to towards the latter, with the Bocca Nuova crater in the background. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View from the saddle between the NE and Voragine craters to towards the latter, with the Bocca Nuova... [info]
(82 Hits)
View from the thick sulfur layer with thin ash cover on the east rim of the Voragine crater (foreground) towards the SE crater complex (background). (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View from the thick sulfur layer with thin ash cover on the east rim of the Voragine crater (foregro... [info]
(81 Hits)
Hiking along the eastern rim of the Voragine means sinking ankle deep into the thick but soft sulphur deposits. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Hiking along the eastern rim of the Voragine means sinking ankle deep into the thick but soft sulphu... [info]
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We have to cross the strongly degassing fumarolic area on the Voragine's eastern rim in order to start our descend (SE crater complex to the left). (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
We have to cross the strongly degassing fumarolic area on the Voragine's eastern rim in order to sta... [info]
(71 Hits)
Hiking down in the soft ash slopes of a volcanic cone is great fun! (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Hiking down in the soft ash slopes of a volcanic cone is great fun! (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
(77 Hits)
Walking along the 'main road' to the summit area back towards the cinder cones from the 2002 - 2003 fissure eruption. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Walking along the 'main road' to the summit area back towards the cinder cones from the 2002 - 2003 ... [info]
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Manu explaining the events that happened during the spectacular 2002- 2003 Mt Etna summit and flank eruption. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Manu explaining the events that happened during the spectacular 2002- 2003 Mt Etna summit and flank ... [info]
(81 Hits)
Looking back from the 2002 - 2003 fissure eruption site (aligned vents in the centre- towards the SE crater complex. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Looking back from the 2002 - 2003 fissure eruption site (aligned vents in the centre- towards the SE... [info]
(74 Hits)
On the way back to the cable car we hike through a recent lava channel. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
On the way back to the cable car we hike through a recent lava channel. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
(79 Hits)
View towards the 2002 - 2003 cinder cones and Etna's summit area with the SE crater (right) and Bocca Nuova (left) behind them. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View towards the 2002 - 2003 cinder cones and Etna's summit area with the SE crater (right) and Bocc... [info]
(80 Hits)
We start our last day of the tour in a gorgeous autumn sumn on the eastern flanks of Mt Etna. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
We start our last day of the tour in a gorgeous autumn sumn on the eastern flanks of Mt Etna. (Photo... [info]
(64 Hits)
Stunning autumn colours and light in the forests on Mt Etna's lower flanks. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Stunning autumn colours and light in the forests on Mt Etna's lower flanks. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
(67 Hits)
The elegant stems of the white Etna berch - 'Betula aetnensis' - which grow on top of the volcano's dark lava flows. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The elegant stems of the white Etna berch - 'Betula aetnensis' - which grow on top of the volcano's ... [info]
(84 Hits)
Studying the intricate ceiling with lavasicles inside Etna's lava cave 'Grotta della Neve'. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Studying the intricate ceiling with lavasicles inside Etna's lava cave 'Grotta della Neve'. (Photo: ... [info]
(81 Hits)
View from Rifugio Citelli towards Mt Etna's eastern lower flanks in autumn colours and the SE crater complex (left) and NE crater (right). (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View from Rifugio Citelli towards Mt Etna's eastern lower flanks in autumn colours and the SE crater... [info]
(85 Hits)
Looking NE from the Rifugio Citelli towards the town the ridge on top of which the town of Taormina is built, our destination for the afternoon. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Looking NE from the Rifugio Citelli towards the town the ridge on top of which the town of Taormina ... [info]
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Etna's NE crater seen from the volcano's lower eastern slopes. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Etna's NE crater seen from the volcano's lower eastern slopes. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
(75 Hits)
Due to contraction during rapid cooling, this lava flow formed cooling joints creating columnar structures perpendicular to the cooling surface. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Due to contraction during rapid cooling, this lava flow formed cooling joints creating columnar stru... [info]
(75 Hits)
Detail of the beautiful columnar basalts at the Alcantara river gorge. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Detail of the beautiful columnar basalts at the Alcantara river gorge. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
(78 Hits)
View along the NE coastline of Sicily close to Taormina. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View along the NE coastline of Sicily close to Taormina. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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Lots of plants and colourful ceramics on the balconies in the town of Taormina. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Lots of plants and colourful ceramics on the balconies in the town of Taormina. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
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View from the Porta Messina in Taormina towards the northeastern coastline of Sicily. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
View from the Porta Messina in Taormina towards the northeastern coastline of Sicily. (Photo: Ingrid... [info]
(91 Hits)
Looking southwest from the public gardens in Taormina towards Mt Etna which is about to be covered by afternoon clouds (summit with steam cloud center-right). (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Looking southwest from the public gardens in Taormina towards Mt Etna which is about to be covered b... [info]
(82 Hits)
We spend our last morning in Catania exploring the historic center near the hotel! (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
We spend our last morning in Catania exploring the historic center near the hotel! (Photo: Ingrid Sm... [info]
(76 Hits)
A lively Friday morning market with lots of fresh fish brought in earlier that day. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
A lively Friday morning market with lots of fresh fish brought in earlier that day. (Photo: Ingrid S... [info]
(83 Hits)
Browsing the local products sold on the Friday fresh market in the center of Catania. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Browsing the local products sold on the Friday fresh market in the center of Catania. (Photo: Ingrid... [info]
(73 Hits)
Just like Naples, the historic center of Catania has interesting architecture... (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
Just like Naples, the historic center of Catania has interesting architecture... (Photo: Ingrid Smet... [info]
(82 Hits)
... and plenty of beautiful old churches and charming little squares. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
... and plenty of beautiful old churches and charming little squares. (Photo: Ingrid Smet) [info]
(76 Hits)
The main square of Catania, Piazza Duomo, with the cathedral and famous monument with the city's symbol, the elephant, sculpted in Etna lava. (Photo: Ingrid Smet)
The main square of Catania, Piazza Duomo, with the cathedral and famous monument with the city's sym... [info]
(74 Hits)
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