Eruption 1865

Eruption 1865 – Sartorius Craters

The Sartorius craters are located on the North-East slope of Mount Etna. These old craters, date back to 1865 and took their name from a German scholar Sartorius von Waltershausen who was among the first to report cartographically the most important eruptions of Mount Etna.

The Sartorius craters are located at an altitude of 1667 meters. There are seven craters aligned in a buttonhole pattern.

sentiero betulle etna

Trekking craters 1865 – Sartorius Mountains

The walk to the Sartorius craters is a walk with medium/ low difficulty, suitable for everyone, even families with children.

It is wonderful both from a geological and a natural point of view, in fact along this walk you can admire the birch aetnensis and many varieties of vegetative species such as the Etna chamomile and the saponaria sicula. The path has a total length of about 4km round trip.

monti sartorius etna anniek alessandro johnny

The Aetnensis birch

Entering the path we will encounter the highest birch forest in Europe. With its peculiarity of being almost white and very smooth, standing out among the black lava rocks, creating a typical Nordic environment, but still with the peculiarity of being in the far south and on an active volcano.


Another form of vegetation that you encounter along the path is the Spino Santo (astragalus) that accompanies you like pillows stretched along the climb.

Spino santo lava 2002

Route to the Sartorius craters

To get to the edge of the bottoniera, you have to follow the first flat section in the middle of the forest and then continue on a fairly steep uphill lava desert for about 50 meters. Small children may need a little help.

Once you get to the top you can enjoy a beautiful view of the entire fracture that was formed in this great eruption of 1865.

If you choose an excursion to the Sartorius craters (Monti Sartorius in Italian) you can enjoy the explanations about the origins and the evolution of the craters of 1865.

escursione monti sartorius etna

From the craters of 1865, the show, appears in all its beauty

Behind, you will see Mount Frumento delle Concazze, one of the largest adventitious cones of Mount Etna, and the smoking top of the volcano.

In front of you, you can admire the entire coastline of Taormina and the Peloritani mountains that verdant with the Rocca Salvatesta that soars with its 1340 meters.

monti sartorius etna nord

You can also walk on the edge of the crater and cross the entire bottoniera until you get to the other side where you will see a big hole at the bottom (old magma chamber). This is one of the mouths of the crater from where lava was flowing out.