This wonderful group of volcanoes, which lie in the middle of the Tyrrhenian Sea, seem to create a vast prehistoric landscape of enviable beauty. A separate mention should be made to the island of Vulcano, the ancient Hier Â (sacred), Thermessa or Terasia; is a most interesting island due to its volcanic and post-volcanic phenomena. The peculiar characteristic of Vulcano is its plateau, the most vast of the Aeolian islands, formed by lava, banks of tuff and quaternary deposits and furrowed by deep valleys. It is surrounded by undulating and bare hills, which fall towards the sea. On the high slopes of the island the panorama is picturesque and wild: dykes alternate with extensive areas of tuff and sand. The circular tour of Vulcano is a succession of fantastic visions famous for their variety and beauty of scenery.
The island of Vulcano is formed by three morphological units: the first, to the South is made of several stratum volcanoes â€“ Monte Aria (500 m), Monte Saraceno (481 m) and Monte Luccia (188 m) â€“ and of the great horse-shoe shaped depression gaping to the North-West of Vulcano Piano (330 m); the second in the middle, is constituted by the Caldera of Vulcano, whose central part makes up the Vulcano Fossa. This is deeply cut and is formed by two craters: the Fossa I and 400 m South West from the first, the present crater Fossa II; it has a diameter of about 500 m, a depth of 200 m and gave way to historically known eruptions, characterized by a mainly explosive activity and by numerous lava flows, one of which, the famous obsidian outflow of Pietre Nere expands along the North-West side in proximity of the two temporary craters of higher and lower Forgia Vecchia.
The third unit is made up by Vulcanello (123 m) with its three in line craters in direction North-East South-West. This small apparatus ejected several lava outflows which made up the plateau of Vulcanello and Punta del Roveto. Vulcanello is connected to Vulcano by a thin isthmus, about one metre above sea level â€“ submerged by the sea under particularly adverse weather conditions. The main apparatuses of Vulcano (Monte Saraceno, the Fossa, Forgia Vecchia, the Faraglione and Vulcanello) are in line along a fault in direction North-South.