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Active volcanoes to spend the night on

Adrenalin junkies, fancy an explosive night? Well we’ve got a list of hotels that live life on the edge (or as close as they can get) to the world’s most active volcanoes. *

Mount Etna in Sicily, Italy

Mount Etna at night

Mount Etna at night

Despite (or more likely due to) being Europe’s most active volcano, Mount Etna is one of the best-known tourist destinations in Italy. There are near-constant warnings about eruptions and smoke rings were sighted as recently as May 2017, yet travellers can’t get enough of Etna’s solid lava rivers and craters. The closest hotel to the summit is Hotel Corsaro.

Oia in Santorini, Greece

The view of Oia at sunset

The view of Oia at sunset

A volcanic island in The Cyclades group of Greek Islands, you might recognise the pristine blue and white, cliff-top domes of Santorini. The island was formed by a volcanic eruption, and volcanic tremors were reported as recently as 2012. So if all of Santorini is a volcano, you might as well head to the prettiest part and check out the town of Oia. Here you’ll find the marvellous Ammoudi Bay, those famed Santorini sunsets and the picturesq La Perla Villas.

Arenal Volcano in Alajuela, Costa Rica

Arenal Volcano at the beginning of the dry season

Arenal Volcano at the beginning of the dry season

Arenal Volcano in Costa Rica puts the ‘active’ in ‘active volcano’ and is covered with hiking trails, whitewater rafting, canoeing, ziplines, horse riding and rainforest night walks. The last eruption was in 1968 when the small town of Tabacón was destroyed. Stay at the foot of Arenal by checking into the Volcano Lodge & Springs and make sure to take advantage of the nearby hot springs.

Hawaii Volcano National Park in Hawaii, USA

Lava flow from the Kiluea Volcano

Lava flow from the Kiluea Volcano

Hawaii, setting for the best Pixar films and the most beautiful beaches, is home to five volcanoes, at various states of activity; Hualalai, Kilauea, Kohala, Mauna Kea, and Mauna Loa. While most of them are considered to be extinct or dormant, the Hawaii Volcano National Park includes two of the still active volcanoes. The park is circled by the Crater Rim Drive, a 11-mile trail that passes through volcanic steam vents. It’s possible to camp inside the park itself, or opt for luxury at the nearby Hale Ohia Cottages.

Volcan Masaya in Masaya, Nicaragua

A crater at Volcan Masaya

A crater at Volcan Masaya

If idyllic island paradises aren’t enough to sate your volcanic voracity, how about a landscape shrouded in sulphuric smoke, with frequent explosions? Volcan Masaya hasn’t seen lava flows in the last 200 years but in 2001 explosions sent rocks flying. Part of the Masaya Volcano National Park in Nicaragua, this violent volcano has a smaller neighbour known as Volcan Nindiri. Stay close (but not too close) at the Hacienda Puerta del Cielo Eco Lodge & Spa.

Finally, if you prefer the theatrical nature of volcanoes over the explosive reality, The Mirage is a tropical hotel on the Las Vegas Strip that puts on ‘eruptions’ in the hotel lobby every night.

  • Always follow advice from the local authorities and only participate in official, guided tours.
  • This article defines an ‘active volcano’ as a volcano that has erupted in the past 10,000 years.