Tourists flock to Italy’s erupting volcano

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Tourists catch a glimpse of the erupting Stromboli volcano on a boat. Photo: Giovanni Isolino/AFP
10:37 CEST+02:00
Tourists have flocked to Stromboli, located off the coast of Sicily, to catch a glimpse of what is the “most significant eruption” of the island’s volcano, one of Europe’s most active, in recent years, a tour operator told The Local.

The island has seen a boom in visitors since the volcano began erupting last week, with hotels fully booked and restaurants thriving, a spokeswoman for the Eolnet agency for the Aeolian Islands told The Local.

Even though trips to the volcano have been cancelled, tourists can still catch a glimpse of the action from the island’s beaches, while dozens of boats have been jostling for position so visitors can get a close-up of the lava flowing into the Mediterranean.

The National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology (INGV) described the eruption as "the most significant in recent years".

“We haven’t resumed visits to the volcano yet, but may do so by the end of the week," the spokeswoman added.

The mayor of nearby Lipari island, Marco Giorgianni, described the situation last week as “certainly not normal”.

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Stromboli, which the Romans referred to as the 'Lighthouse of the Mediterranean' , has continuously erupted since 1932, with the last major one being in 2009.

It is also one of the world's most visited and accessible volcanoes. 

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