Coolest Dormant Volcanoes Across The World
People pursue travel for scores of reasons – some love the feeling of venturing into unknown corners and meeting strangers, others want to get away from the everyday routines and find the perfect getaway. While the thrill that accompanies most travel-related objectives is palpable, nothing gets your blood running as walking on a dormant volcano does. Knowing that you’re walking above a sleeping giant, a phenomenon capable of colossal damage, each step is a thrilling encounter of nerves and excitement, while providing the ultimate lesson in humility.
CERRO NEGRO, NICARAGUA
Cerro Negro is situated in one of the most densely populated volcanic areas in South America. It is part of a challenging yet rewarding trek (El Hoyo Volcano) that takes you through three volcanoes and a crater lake all within a couple of days. Standing at 2388 feet, this is one of the young volcanoes around the world having been born on in 1850. The climb and view of the volcano itself is worth the hike, but the peculiar volcano boarding that takes places along its slopes is the best way to get down, and adds a tinge of excitement to the adventure.
While Eyjafjallajokull is the most well known volcano in the Land of Ice and Fire, Thrihnukagigur is one of the more interesting volcanoes in Iceland. Located midway between Reykjavik and the Golden Circle, not only is the hike up the volcano an education in otherworldly sights, they up the ante by taking you inside the volcano through an open elevator lowered inside the crater. Dormant for at least 4000 years, this volcano’s inside tour reveals untouched and unseen magma formations just to add to the surrealist eclipses and defines the country it is in.
MAUNGAWHAU, NEW ZEALAND
New Zealand is another island country that is spotted with volcanic mountains, and Auckland’s tallest volcanic peak is Mount Eden or Maungawhau. At around 650 feet, the crater offers quite a lot to do with Maori remnants lining the area as well as a panoramic 360 degree view of the entire city. Such peaks serve as a great example to show the vicinity of human settlement to natural forces that can, at times, act unpredictably and surprisingly. Given how this is not a very high peak, locals often use it as a fitness trail with a great view to end the workout!
One of the more challenging of volcanic peaks to trek up is situated about 30 miles south of Quito. At an elevation of 19, 347 feet, Cotopaxi is not for the inexperienced hike. With the high altitude of the area as well as the requirement of a guide, a proper half-week tour must be organised to make it to the top of this volcanic giant. Dormant for over 70 years now, previous eruptions were characterized by destructive ash flows and pyroclastic flows. But, given the frequency of its eruptions in the past, it is unlikely that it will remain dormant for much longer!
MOUNT KILIMANJARO, TANZANIA
Made by the combination of three volcanic cones, the climb up Mount Kilimanjaro makes for one of the most unique treks you would have taken. While two of those are extinct and the last eruption was 360,000 years ago, the volcano is still not entirely extinct and can shows signs of erupting at any time. The trek up the mountain will take you through distinct ecological zones with rainforests, desert and subalpine vegetation at varying altitudes. It takes approximately 5 to 7 days to make the top based on the choice of route, but the view from Africa’s tallest mountain and the world’s highest free-standing peak is one that will really make you feel on top of the world. For this reason, the hike up Mount Kilimanjaro is one that we severely recommend, partly due to the fact that it is the only one of the seven summits that does not require professional climbing training, keeping it open for just about any climbing enthusiast. While you see the volcanic cones along the path, the icing on the cake is the glacial face that greets you atop the mountain. We suggest you get there before all the glacial ice melts!