Adventure activities to do in Sicily

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If you are an adventure seeker, then Sicily is the place to be. From hiking in the mountains, to diving in the sea. There is something for everyone. We give you some ideas to help you discover which adventures there are for you. To learn more about Sicily, read our blog Discover Sicily: The largest island in the Mediterranean Sea.

Tip: be prepared and make sure to bring the right equipment for the adventure of choice. If you are not used to going on adventures on your own, we recommend hiring a local guide. A local guide has the expertise and can ensure more safety.

Equipment is the most important part for adventures. Make sure you bring or rent the right equipment for the activity you would like to do. Some equipment that is always useful for adventures is good shoes (depending on activity), and a backpack with a head torch, first aid kit, sun protection and rain protection. Make sure to check the weather, if the weather is not favorable it’s better to postpone or even cancel the activity.

Some tips for adventures in Sicily

  • April to June (spring) and September to October (fall) are the best periods for adventures in Sicily.
  • Wear good shoes and clothes, bring enough water and snacks, bring sun and rain protection.
  • Make sure to download the maps offline.
  • Don’t forget to bring a first aid kit.
  • Have respect, leave no trash.

Tip: always have cash with you, but not too much. In some gas stations, shops, or markets they don’t accept payment by card.

Hiking with incredible views

Make sure to bring some good hiking shoes because hiking in Sicily is amazing. A few areas are perfect for hiking and discovering the incredible nature of Sicily.

  • Explore the trails near Europe’s highest active volcano, Mount Etna. When you decide to hike in this area, we suggest hiking on both the North part and on the South part because the views are totally different. The North is less touristic, and you can find lava caves and craters besides that it is much greener on this side. The South is quite touristic, but here you will have impressive views over the activity of the volcano. There are multiple different hikes with variable lengths you can do. To read more about some hikes near Etna, read the blog Mount Etna: 5 hikes near the most active volcano.

Must do trail: Mount Etna Summit Hike, Hike to lava cave Serracozo, Hike from Piano Provenzana to Bottoniera del 1911 and to Cerniera di fuoco 2002.

  • Hike around a river valley at Cavagrande del Cassibile nature reserve. The walk is around 6 km and make sure to bring your swimwear if you want to swim in the river.
  • An extensive hiking trail goes through the mountain ranges Nobrodi and Madonie mountains in case you like a challenge. During the hike you will pass by lakes, forests and much more.

Must do trail: Rocca di Novara, Pizzo Carbonara

  • Hiking in Zingaro Nature Reserve for stunning views over the Sea and secluded beaches. The trail is the Coastal Path connecting the towns of Scopello and San Vito Lo Capo.
  • Hiking on the Aeolian Islands to discover the craters and volcano. If possible, you should hike to the summit of the active volcanic crater.

Tip: If you are not used to hiking during traveling, we recommend hiring a local guide. A local guide can safely navigate through the terrain and might have some interesting information regarding the area.

Mountain biking with a challenge

For mountain biking, there are many options to bike around. Some of the best mountain biking places are the following:

  • The Etna Trails: the slopes around Mount Etna are perfect, challenging ascents and descents. Ride around the highest and most active volcano with unbelievable views.
  • Madonie and Nebrodi Parks: many trails with stunning scenery. Plenty of trails with different lengths and difficulty.
  • The Sicilian Coastline with the Zingaro Nature Reserve to have amazing coastal views.
  • Bike around Ragusa and Noto Antica for some historical places, countryside and to discover the baroque towns.

Tip: always wear a helmet and protective gear. Go with a local guide if you are not used to cycling.

Caving and climbing

If you love rocks, then Sicily is the place to be for caving and climbing. From on to between the rocks, here are the best places to discover some caves:

  • Mount Etna with some lava caves.
    • The lava cave Serracozo is difficult to find, but once you are in the cave you will be amazed.Grotta del Gelo is an impressive ice cave on Mount Etna. For this cave, you should book a guided tour to make sure the visit happens safely.
    • Grotta dei Tre Livelli (Three Levels Cave) on Mount Etna, which you should visit with a guided tour because you need the right equipment.
  • The ancient Sperlinga cave has a history and is perfect to discover. 

There are several regions in Sicily for caving, like Palermo, Mazara del Vallo, Nuoro, Catania and Oristano. Every area has a unique cave with guided tours.

For rock climbing there are two amazing spots you should go:

  • San Vito Lo Capo: cliffs that are overlooking the sea with variety of routes. This place is the most well-known climbing spot in Sicily.
  • In the area of Palermo there are climbing cliffs like Valdesi, Schiavo, and Anfiteatro.
  • Rocca di Salvatestra: this place is in the Peloritani Mountains.

Tip: don’t forget to bring a helmet and the appropriate equipment. Most areas are good bolted but bring a minimum rope of 60-meters and bring enough quickdraws and carabiners.

Climbing book: “Sicily-Rock” by Karsten Oelze and Harald Roker.

Water activities

Sicily is an island, which means it’s surrounded by the sea, so of course there are many water activities to do in Sicily. From swimming, to snorkeling to go even deeper and go for a scuba dive.

Snorkeling or scuba diving are a must-do in Sicily, some places that are unbelievable for this are the Aegadian Islands, Ustica Island, Isola dei Ciclopi but there are many more places where you have a good visibility, historical underwater world and amazing marine life.

Go sailing or rent a boat to discover caves and the small islands around Sicily. From Syracuse and Ortigia you can enjoy a boat tour or go around the Aeolian Islands with a boat.

Canoeing and kayaking on the lake Pergusa or on the Alcantara River. If you love kayaking on the sea, then it’s perfect to discover sea caves and coastlines by starting your kayak trip from Cefalù or Taormina.

Other adventurous activities

Sicily has much to offer, besides the activities mentioned above, there is much more to discover. Some other random activities you can do in Sicily, just to give you some ideas:

  • Skydiving in Syracuse or Trapani, with some amazing views.
  • Paragliding starting near Taormina or Mount Etna to relax with a view. 
  • Horseback riding around Mount Etna, Cefalù or somewhere around the countryside.
  • Canyoning around the area of Ragusa and Syracuse

Sicily is such an amazing place where there is so much to discover. Besides all these activities, there is a lot more, but we recommend you drive around and get lost on the beautiful island.

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