Major Volcanoes of the World

Some of the world's most fascinating natural wonders are volcanoes. They exist all throughout the planet and have the ability to both awe and destroy. Size, geological characteristics, and eruptive history are used to describe major volcanoes. From the well-known Mount Fuji in Japan to the explosive Mount St. Helens in the United States, these enormous natural forces have changed the topography of our globe and continue to captivate people all over the world.

The most notable volcanoes in the world, their distinctive characteristics, and their effects on the environment will all be covered in this article.

Most Famous Volcanoes of the World

Here are the descriptions of some prominent volcanoes −

Mount Fuji

  • The largest peak in Japan and an active volcano, Mount Fuji is situated on Honshu Island.

  • With a height of 3,776 meters (12,389 ft), it is nearly conical in shape.

  • Japan has always revered Mount Fuji as a sacred peak and national emblem.

  • The best weather for climbing occurs between July and September.

  • UNESCO named Mount Fuji a World Heritage site in 2013.

  • Since its last eruption in 1707, Mount Fuji has been categorized as a dormant volcano.

Mount St. Helens

  • An active stratovolcano, Mount St. Helens is situated in Washington State's Cascade Range.

  • It is a component of the Pacific Ring of Fire and has a history of significant eruptions, notably the one in 1980, which was the deadliest and most economically damaging volcanic event in American history.

  • The volcano's summit crater measures around 1.6 kilometers (1 mile) in width and is 2,550 meters (8,363 feet) tall.

  • The Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument has been established for the region surrounding the volcano.

  • The United States Geological Survey (USGS) is still constantly monitoring the volcano for indications of potential eruptions in the future.

Mount Vesuvius

  • Italy's Mount Vesuvius is a stratovolcano that is best known for its eruption in AD 79, which obliterated the cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum.

  • The volcano is approximately 15 kilometers (9 miles) in circumference and 1,281 meters (4,203 ft) tall.

  • There are a lot of people living close to the volcano; there are roughly 3 million people living nearby.

  • One of the most hazardous volcanoes in the world, Mount Vesuvius has erupted numerous times since the eruption in AD 79, with the most recent eruption taking place in 1944.

  • The Italian government keeps a tight eye on it, and there are evacuation procedures in place just in case.

Mauna Loa

  • One of the biggest active volcanoes on Earth is the shield volcano Mauna Loa, which is situated on the Big Island of Hawaii in the United States.

  • Its top is located around 75 kilometers (47 miles) from the closest settlement, and it is 4,169 meters (13,678 feet) tall.

  • Since its first prominent eruption in 1843, which is well-documented, Mauna Loa has erupted 33 times, with the most recent one happening in 1984.

  • Its potential for big and destructive eruptions makes it an important geological danger, and the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory keeps an eye on it.

Mount Pinatubo

  • A stratovolcano on the Philippine Island of Luzon, Mount Pinatubo is well-known for its enormous eruption in 1991, one of the biggest volcanic eruptions of the 20th century.

  • The 1,486-meter-tall (4,875-foot) volcano's eruption in 1991 significantly damaged the neighborhood and forced thousands of people to flee their homes.

  • The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology is now actively monitoring Mount Pinatubo to safeguard the security of adjacent towns.


  • The southern Icelandic stratovolcano Eyjafjallajökull is well known for its eruption in 2010, which produced considerable media coverage and interrupted air travel throughout Europe.

  • The 1,666-meter-tall volcano last erupted in 2010, with lesser eruptions taking place in 2016 and 2021.

  • The 2010 eruption produced huge ash clouds that disrupted air travel for many days and cost the economy billions of dollars.

  • The bigger Katla volcanic system, which includes Eyjafjallajökull, is also actively watched by the Icelandic Meteorological Office since it has the potential to experience powerful eruptions that might be extremely catastrophic.


  • A volcanic island called Krakatoa is situated in Indonesia's Sunda Strait between Java and Sumatra.

  • One of the deadliest and most destructive volcanic eruptions in recorded history, Krakatoa's most well-known eruption took place in 1883.

  • The eruption was so strong that waves up to 130 feet tall were produced by the tsunami that followed it. The explosion could be heard up to 3,000 miles away.

  • More than 36,000 people died as a result of the eruption, largely from the tsunami, which also created long-lasting changes in the climate.

Mount Rainier

  • At 14,411 feet, Mount Rainier, a stratovolcano in Washington state, is the highest mountain in the Cascade Range.

  • The volcano last erupted about 1,000 years ago, although it is still regarded as an active volcano and is under close USGS observation.

  • The most glaciated summit in the contiguous United States is Mount Rainier, which is covered with several glaciers.

  • In addition to being a well-liked place for skiing, climbing, and hiking, the mountain is also the home to a number of unusual ecosystems and species, including the critically endangered Mount Rainier white-tailed ptarmigan.

Mount Etna

  • One of the biggest and most active volcanoes in the world, Mount Etna is situated on the east coast of the Italian island of Sicily. It is 10,922 feet tall.

  • It is one of the longest-lasting volcanoes ever, having erupted for at least 2,700 years.

  • Numerous towns and cities, including Catania, which has seen numerous historical eruptions, are located around the volcano.

Mount Nyiragongo

  • In the vicinity of the city of Goma, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, sits Mount Nyiragongo, an active stratovolcano.

  • A well-liked tourist and research attraction, the volcano is well-known for the distinctive lava lake that develops within its crater.

  • Due to Mount Nyiragongo's lava's reputation for being among the world's most fluid, lava flows from this volcano can move quite quickly.

  • Hundreds of thousands of people were forced to flee their homes when Mount Nyiragongo last erupted, and much of the city of Goma was completely destroyed.

List of 10 Major Volcanoes of the World

The following table shows 10 major volcanoes their type, height and location −



Height (meters)


Mount Fuji




Mount St. Helens



United States (Washington State)

Mount Vesuvius




Mauna Loa

Shield volcano


United States (Hawaii)

Mount Pinatubo












Mount Rainier



United States (Washington State)

Mount Etna




Mount Nyiragongo



Democratic Republic of the Congo


One of the most amazing natural events on Earth is the eruption of volcanoes. These geological marvels are breathtaking and occasionally hazardous, with towering stratovolcanoes and scorching lava and ash eruptions among their highlights.

The ten largest volcanoes in the world are distinguished by their size, activity, and effects on the areas around them. Even while they have the potential to be harmful, they also offer chances for research, travel, and understanding of the Earth's potent geological processes.

Frequently Asked Questions

What type of volcano is Mount Fuji?

Mount Fuji is a stratovolcano, also known as a composite volcano.

What is the location of Mount St. Helens?

Mount St. Helens is located in Washington State, United States.

What is the extent of Mauna Loa?

Mauna Loa is the largest subaerial volcano in both mass and volume, and it covers an area of about 2,035 square miles (5,271 square kilometers).

What caused the eruption of Mount Pinatubo in 1991?

The eruption of Mount Pinatubo in 1991 was caused by the collision of the Eurasian Plate and the Philippine Sea Plate, which resulted in the subduction of the latter under the former.

Updated on: 08-Nov-2023


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