Note: all the information in this section is current as of April 2012. We are not responsible for any difference from what is described.
There are only five managed refuges on Mount Etna, where you can book for night accommodation and also have lunch or dinner:
These refuges are good starting points for many excursions on Mount Etna trails, although they are not so faraway from population centers (it takes about an hour to reach them, even from Catania).
There are also many mountain huts, mainly along the Altomontana track. Many of them are closed, or at least I've never been so lucky to find them opened, except for the following:
These three are just huts, small buildings with a fireplace and firewood outside. To be honest, it must be said that often are the usual vandals that ruin them, as happened to Galvarina refuge. Once there were at least some benches to sleep and a big table, now it seems to me there's nothing inside, you have to sleep on the floor.
The other huts I know belong to CAI mountain association or to the Forest Guard, I've never found them opened:
- Paternò Castello refuge
- Monte Baracca refuge
- Santa Maria refuge
- Monte Spagnolo refuge
- Monte Palestro refuge
- San Giovanni Gualberto refuge
- Pietracannone refuge
Now and then, one of these shelters is accomodated for hikers and mountaineers with some beds, a kitchen and so on, but as soon as the hut is ready, vandals arrive to destroy it. For istance, this happened to the Pietracannone refuge, a strategical point for excursions (Mount Fontane, PietraCannone, Cubanìa, you could even reach the Citelli refuge and then Sartorius mounts, Serracozzo cave, Serracozzo trail, "Serra delle Concazze"): it had been totally renewed, in a couple of months someone totally destroyed it.