Update in Progress...
Volcano Tourism has emerged over the last decade as an important sector of the tourism industry - especially with volcanic activity making the headlines quite regularly. The year 2021 has seen abundant news about long-lasting eruptions in Iceland and on one of the Canary Islands, La Palma. All over the world, there are volcanoes in various states of activity, some erupt violently for a very short time like Semeru in Indonesia, causing catastrophic conditions for the surrounding regions and the people living in close vicinity. Others, like Hawaiian or Icelandic volcanoes, erupt more quietly but attract visitors from near and far to observe the glowing lava flows and fire fountains.
To do justice to many volcanic destinations, I have published a book a while ago, which features contributions by geoscientists from many countries, who shared their views, experiences, and their research to help us understand the vast diversity of volcanic environments.
Why are Volcanoes so Popular Worldwide?
Volcano tourism is not new - people have travelled to visit active volcanoes for many centuries. Every year millions of tourists make active and dormant volcanic areas their preferred destination, either for recreational purposes including sightseeing, hiking, climbing, camping, or perhaps as an adventure trip involving more extreme activities such as mountaineering, volcano boarding, or taking a hot air balloon trip over volcanic landforms like in Capadoccia, Turkey.
Specialised tours (excursions, expeditions) are offered to many active volcanoes worldwide and tour guides generally include geologists and volcanologists to provide guidance and knowledge for people seeking more information about the awesome forces of volcanic activity.
However, accidents do happen, unfortunately. In December 2019 the volcanic island Whakaari (White Island) in New Zealand erupted unexpectedly and 22 people lost their lives during and following the tragic events. Having visited this island several years ago, from personal experience this volcano should never have been a tourist destination for day tours and it was only a matter of time that something would happen.
Volcano tourism in Japan is popular, usually in combination with visits to nearby hot spring spas. The viewing platform on the crater rim of Mount Aso on the island of Kyushu used to be a 'must-see' destination for domestic and foreign visitors. These days Aso-san has become a bit less visitor-friendly and briefly erupted again in October 2021.
The main aim of this website is to provide and exchange information about the tourism sector that focuses on active and dormant volcanic areas on a global basis. This includes the safety aspects that should be considered before venturing into an active crater or climbing volcanoes that may appear quiet, but are classed as active and/or potentially dangerous.