Active Volcanoes You Can Actually Visit

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Skydiving? Nah. Bungy jumping? Child’s play. Only real thrill-seekers know that scaling active volcanoes is the way to go. Visit one of these exhilarating volcanoes…but tread carefully, all of them are active.

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Mount Pacaya, Guatemala

Try to avoid the molten lava as it seeps in thick rivers down the mountainside. Mount Pacaya, the most active volcano in Guatemala, has been in a constant state of eruption since 1965. The nearest you can get to the action is a plateau near the crater, but this won’t diminish your death-defying experience.

Active Volcanoes you can actually visit
Mount Pacaya © Holger Mette/iStock/Thinkstock

Mount Vesuvius, Italy

Notorious for the ancient devastation of Pompeii and Herculaneum in 79 AD, this volcano seems quiet since its last major eruption in 1944. You can hike to the top and peer over the edge of the crater into the mouth of this formidable beast, bearing in mind that Mount Vesuvius’ next eruption is long overdue.

Active Volcanoes you can actually visit
Mount Vesuvius © dizainera/iStock/Thinkstock

Mount Sakurajima, Japan

Mount Fuji may have retired, but that doesn’t mean Japan’s not still a hotbed of volcanic aggression. Mount Sakurajima is one such example. Here, you can observe the explosive crater activity from designated lava observation spots.

Active Volcanoes you can actually visit
Mount Sakurajima © satori13/iStock/Thinkstock

Mount Bromo, Indonesia

Don’t miss the opportunity to walk, horseback ride or drive across a desert of ash to reach the base of the colossal Mount Bromo, then climb the stairs to the rim of the crater. It’s no wonder that locals make the pilgrimage for sacred rituals on the mountaintop: The views from up here are sublime.

Active Volcanoes you can actually visit
Mount Bromo © my_beloved/iStock/Thinkstock

Mount Pinatubo, Philippines

You might not be expecting to find this secret oasis at the top of an active volcano, but Mount Pinatubo holds an azure crater lake at its summit where tourists can bathe. The volcano last exploded in 1991, so best to visit sooner rather than later if you don’t want to be blown out of the water.

Active Volcanoes you can actually visit
Mount Pinatubo © Arnel Manalang/iStock/Thinkstock

Sierra Negra, Galápagos 

Literally translated as “Black Mountain,” Sierra Negra looms ominously over the Galapagos Islands as one of the most active volcanic areas in the world. The last eruption occurred in 2005, so bear in mind as you hike the six-mile caldera that another one is probably due soon.

Active Volcanoes you can actually visit
Sierra Negra © stefaniaadreetto/iStock/Thinkstock

Mount Kilauea, Hawaii 

One of the world’s most active volcanoes, and the jewel-in-the-crown of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Mount Kilauea is a furious thing of beauty. If you’re lucky, you’ll see the lava flowing.

Active Volcanoes you can actually visit
Mount Kilauea © kongxinzhu/iStock/Thinkstock

Poás Volcano, Costa Rica 

If you liked the promise of paradise atop Mount Pinatubo, then you’ll love the gargantuan craters on Poás – two of which are immersed in bright aquamarine waters. But leave your swimsuit at home: The pH is deathly acidic, and an eruption in February means you won’t get any closer to this active volcano than the lookout point.

Active Volcanoes you can actually visit
Poás Volcano © cigar/iStock/Thinkstock

Featured image by Michael Day

Written by insider city guide series Hg2 | A Hedonist’s guide to… whose guides cover all the best hotels, restaurants, bars, clubs, sights, shops and spas.

Active Volcanoes You Can Actually Visit was last modified: March 1st, 2018 by Elizabeth Gourd
Author: Elizabeth Gourd (165 posts)

Elizabeth suffers from an acute case of wanderlust, which no amount of traveling or adventure can cure. She has lived in London, New York and Berlin, and is currently a writer for Hg2 | A Hedonist's Guide To...