Tanna: A Fiery Volcano Paradise In The South Pacific

At the base of Mount Yasur is Sulphur Bay. The subterranean activity which fuels the volcano also creates hot springs and small geysers. The full force of mother nature can be understood with just a single visit.

The volcano is found on Tanna, an island in the South Pacific. The French, Scottish Missionaries and Americans have all visited — and called the island home.

Mount Yasur FAQs

  1. With a height of almost 1,200 feet, Mount Yasur is an active volcano on Tanna Island.
  1. It is easily accessible and anyone can walk up to the crater edge and look down into its insides, but it can be frightening. Frequent explosions shake the ground so be ready for the debris which is shot high into the air.
  1. Mount Yasur is rated on a scale from 0 to 4 regarding the danger posed. On any day the site is rated 2, or higher, there is a strong likelihood the volcanic rocks will fly beyond the crater’s edge. Visits are banned on those days.
  1. Despite the warning system, Mount Yasur is dangers at anytime. Visitors face projectiles, toxic gas and avalanches.
  1. Over the years, three people have been killed because they got to closer to lower and unsafe areas. One time, both a guide and tourist were killed because the tourist insisted on going to a dangers area. The guide went with her and both were hit by propelled lava shards and died instantly.
  1. Most active between late February and early April, more ground water comes into contact with the hot rocks surrounding the magma.
  1. James Cook is thought to have been drawn by the volcanoes glow. He went on to become the first European visitor to the island in 1774.
  1. Today the volcano is a sacred area for followers of the John Frum cargo cult. John Frum is deified as a messenger to predicted the wealth brought to the island by American forces during World War II. Cult followers believe Frum lives inside Mount Yasur where he rules a kingdom consisting of Frum’s fellow Americans.

Not The Only One

There are many active volcanoes on the Vanuatu archipelago. Ambae, Ambrym, and Lopevi are just a few. The island nation’s entire arc is the end result of a zone stretching from Hunter islands to the south up to the Solomon Islands in the north.


Ambrym is a large basaltic volcano with a 12-km-wide caldera. It is not just one of the more active volcanoes of Vanuatu, but on the planet. Its most active craters often contain small lava lakes.


Aoba, also known as Ambae, is a massive 2500 cubic kilometer basaltic shield volcano that is the most voluminous volcano of the New Hebrides archipelago.


Gaua is one of the most remote and most active volcanoes of the Vanuatu archipelago. The most recent eruption began in Sep 2009 from Mt Garet and is ongoing.


Lopevi is one of Vanuatu’s more active volcanoes. It forms a steep cone rising over 1400 meters from the sea and experiences eruptions from the summit crater and flank vents.

The Takeaway

Strongly rooted in exotic traditional culture, Vanuatu’s citizens are friendly and welcome visitors.  One of the more exciting volcano travel locations in the world! Take adventurous expeditions and get near active lava lakes on Ambrym Island and the fireworks of Yasur volcano on Tanna Island.