etna romance

Romantic caves - The cave of Palombe

etna romance itinerari romantic-caves---the-cave-of-palombe

On Etna slopes you can find more than 200 lava flow caves. They have been used since antiquity as holy places, burial and refuges for travellers to Etna.

One of the most beautiful eruptive caves in Etna, the “Grotta delle Palombe”  (the Doves Grotto) was formed in the historical eruption of 1669 and still represents a mysterious cavity for visitors arriving on the volcano.

In 1823, Mario Gemmellaro, together with an Englishman John Marshall, was the first  who plunged into the  dangerous cave, to a depth of  120 mt under the “Monti Rossi “ (Red Mountains). He left a stone which is still there and reading the following quote: "Marius Gemmellarus primus ima  haec in tartara venit".

The access to the cave is located in the center of the eruptive crater and is reached through  a zigzag trail that was made at that time by Mario Gemmellaro.

Difficulty level

Easy – the itinerary has a low level of danger, it hasn’t any tecnical difficulty, without bottlenecks, the visiting time is within 3 hours (included the approach)

Difference in altitude 8 m
Travel time

1 h

Recommended clothing technical clothing
Height 838 meters above sea level



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