"the trip I took with your group back in 2021 was SO GOOD" (Steve O., US, about the Colors of Iceland tour)
... I just wanted to say that the trip I took with your group back in 2021 was SO GOOD. All the memories came flooding back in, and I was so impressed with the level of knowledge from our guide. We also went to a ton of different locations that I know other tourists would never see. Kudos to you and your team."
Steve O., US, about the Colors of Iceland tour
Thank you so much for the great field trip. Everybody loved it. (Excursion to Methana)
On top of the 230 BC historic lava dome of Methana
Conference participants on the way up to the lava dome
View over the Saronic Gulf from the Methana historic lava dome
Trail up to the top of the dome
Break at the beach of Paleokastro
"Hi Tom, thank you so much for the great field trip. Everybody loved it. I am receiving lots of messages congratulating you. I am back in Athens after a few days staying in the boat and sampling sea water. Plan is to go back to Methana in October to engage people, mainly school students in sampling and analysis- sea monitoring activities. And of course we will be in touch for more on-shore adventures with you! Thanks once again"
(SEGH2023 conference, 2-6 July 2023, field trip to Methana)
Unforgettable Geological Exploration: Unveiling Santorini's Wonders with Volcano Adventures
Tom and Don
Tom and Don
Bob with Tom and Don
" Embarking on a guided geological tour of Santorini with Tom Pfeiffer, an expert field guide and noted volcanologist, through Volcano Adventures was an exceptional experience. With just the three of us—Tom, my brother Don, and myself—we had the privilege of receiving personalized attention, expert guidance, and an unparalleled level of knowledge throughout our journey.
Tom's expertise allowed us to see and interpret the landscape by focusing on its key feature—the stratigraphy. With his keen eye and extensive understanding, Tom guided us through the layers of Santorini's geological history, unraveling stories embedded within formations. His ability to provide historical context at every location we visited enriched our understanding of the island's significance and made the experience truly immersive.
Tom's familiarity with the island was evident as he skillfully navigated the roads, acting as both our guide and driver. His fluency in Greek proved invaluable during our lunch stops, where he effortlessly communicated with locals and ensured that each stop was not only gastronomically delightful but also rich with its own unique stories and cultural significance.
We particularly appreciated Tom's ability to tailor the itinerary to our physical levels and interests. Each stop became a personal discovery, as Tom's guidance and expertise allowed us to make our own fascinating rock, mineral, and archaeological findings. His keen eye for details and patterns in the landscape proved invaluable, further enhancing our exploration and creating memorable moments of revelation.
What sets this tour apart and added an extra layer of depth is Tom's own research on Santorini. His insights, drawn from years of experience and exploration, provided us with unique perspectives and access to important sites integral to his research.
In sum, our geological exploration of Santorini with Tom Pfeiffer through Volcano Adventures was an extraordinary and enlightening experience. Tom's expertise, attention to detail, and passion for the subject matter made this journey one of a kind. We left Santorini not only with a deeper understanding of its geology but also with great memories and a profound appreciation for the remarkable forces that have shaped this captivating island.
Thank you, Tom Pfeiffer and Volcano Adventures, for an unforgettable adventure and an opportunity to explore Santorini alongside an expert field guide and volcanologist.
Bob Sharpe, Kitchener, Ontario
Don Sharpe, Vienna, Austria
June, 2023" (Santorini Geology Tour)
"I had a wonderful week full of discoveries" (Gernot V., about our tour to Methana)
Group inside a natural cave inside the historic lava dome on Methana
"...For me, I would like to say, that I had a wonderful week full of discoveries in nature, a lot of sun and great views. All these experiences are deeply linked with our truly nice group we built up. Thanks to all of you for being there with me and special thanks again to Tom, who made this possible!
Hope to see you soon."
Gernot V., about our tour to Methana)
"Thank you for a superb holiday" (Simeon B., UK, about our tour on Methana)
On one of the volcanic peaks of Methana, Mar 2023
Daryl and I just wanted to thank you for a superb holiday a week ago in and around Methana. It was an excellent small group and the location at this time of spring is 2nd to none. The walking and food were superb. Thanks for your detailed and thorough planning. We look forward to seeing you on a future trip.
Simeon B., UK, about our tour on Methana)
"Again, a great trip that gave me an intense and rich experience" (Stromboli to Etna tour)
I came back very happy from the trip: I found it great value.
It was very well organized: all ran like clockwork. The quality of the accommodations was above my expectations and food was good too.
At nearly 77 the trip was at times a bit tougher than I expected. I had imagined thew trail to be well defined which was often not the case. Yasmin was considerate helping me and one or two others to deal with tougher sections.
As a guide he is a kind man, who wisely treats the group as adults. His enthusiasm for volcanism is infectious.
Again, a great trip that gave me an intense and rich experience in a relatively short time!
I hope this is helpful,
Frederik " (F. B., Netherlands about the Stromboli to Etna tour)
"Volcanoes and food, this is Indonesia for me" (Martin K., about our recent Volcano Special to Java, Indonesia, Nov 2022)
"I found all trips carefully and well organized as well as Iceland and Italy. Andi is such an enthusiastic person and a proper guide making his job worthy. To me, I liked the most that adventure, otherwise the tour wouldn't be such challenging.
About Semeru - well, this was hard-challenging. This is not for everyone. That was a real adventure for me. But we couldn't make it without porters! It was 3 days hike, steep and some parts was kind of sketchy with using a rope for rappelling, but we did rely on Andi.
And food! That was something - culinary paradise for me.
Volcanoes and food, this is Indonesia for me."
(Martin K., about our recent Volcano Special to Java, Indonesia, Nov 2022)
Our group on Etna volcano (Oct 2022)
Descending Valle del Bove
Various feedback in our group
“We have been back home in Perth for seven hours now. It's cool and grey as it often is in spring.
What a lovely group! We'll miss you all. It was indeed a Grand Tour.”
“Hello dear friends, now we are back home since more than a week. It was a wonderful time with you, so many great experiences.”
“Finally back in New York and a cold rainy fall. Thanks all for a great time, such a good group!!”
(Feedback from participants on our recent Volcanoes of Italy tour Oct 2022)
"Chris was certainly an amazing guide"
Back from Iceland & still catching up on emails! Chris was certainly an amazing guide. Not only an expert on volcanoes, but also a 4x4 driver & cook. Is there anything that he doesn't do!
(from UK, about his Colors of Iceland tour in July 2021)
"...how well organized and structured the trip was"
Just wanted to let you know that the Iceland trip was wonderful. I was very impressed by how well organized and structured the trip was. Chris, our guide, was excellent, and there wasn't a question about Iceland he couldn't answer. By the end of the trip I felt bad for other tourists we came across because I knew they weren't getting the real Iceland experience like we were. There was never a dull moment in the trip, that's for sure. I would book a trip with VolcanoDiscovery again.
(from US, about his Colors of Iceland tour in July 2021)
Reisen in Covid-Zeiten / Santorin 19-26.9.2020
Thorsten bei den Windmühlen von Emporio
es war sehr schön auf Santorin und ich möchte mich an dieser Stelle bei dir
und deiner Freundin für die gute Organisation bedanken.
Ihr habt mir das Gefühl von Sicherheit in dieser Corona geplagten Welt gegeben.
Das du mich dennoch betreut hast,
obwohl ich der einzig übrig gebliebene auf dieser Reise war, ist irgendwie ein kleines Wunder.
Und für mich kaum in Worte zu fassen.
Danke für die schönen Momente und für die sehr informativen Eindrücke,
die du mir sehr gut vermitteln konntest.
Man hat gemerkt, dass du dein Hobby lebst und anderen weitergibst.
Vielen Dank auch noch einmal für die Fotos, welche überwältigend geworden sind.
Diese werden mir helfen, diese besonderen Erinnerungen in Farbe festzuhalten.
Ich hoffe, dass ihr gut aus diesen schlimmen Zeiten herauskommt und einen fantastischen Neuanfang hinlegt.
Ich werde, falls mir das Schicksal wohlgesinnt ist, in Zukunft noch weitere Reisen buchen.
Geplant sind diese zumindest.
Thorsten aus Hessen
"...an amazing experience....high on the adventure scale with lots of unforgettable memories."
Here is a summary of my latest and last adventure of 2019. It's a little long this time but I hope you will find it interesting.
I returned to Indonesia (my previous trip was in 2013) to explore some more volcanoes, this time in north Sulawesi and north Maluku. In between exploring the volcanoes, there was time for some sightseeing in Tomohon and surrounding area (visiting geothermal areas, Tongkoko national park) and Ternate. On the way back I had a 2 day stopover in Singapore (my first time in the city).
In total the exploration involved 6 active volcanoes:
The first 3 volcanoes, Lokon, Mahawu and Soputan (all stratovolcanoes in north Sulawesi) were quiet at the time of our visit apart from fumarolic acitivity in the crater of Lokon, depositing sulphur around the vents. The craters of all 3 volcanoes were impressive with excellent views of the surrounding areas. Mahawu last erupted in 1977, whereas both Lokon and Soputan had last erupted more recently, 2015 and 2018, respectively.
The other 3 volcanoes are in North Maluku and were erupting at the time of our visit:
1. Karangtang. A stratovolcano with 2 main craters, is located on Siau island (central Sangihe Islands) and is reached by an approx. 5h journey by ferry from Manado. We spent 2 nights observing gaseous basaltic lava flows from the south crater. On the first night we were camped out in a field in Hiung village and although the lava flows were only observed from the south crater (largely on the right flank), you could see a glow from the north. On the second night, we went higher up (a steep hike up from Winangun village) to observe the activity from a closer distance. The volcano was more active on the second night. We no longer saw the glow from the north crater, but the activity from the south crater had increased substantially, with lava flows on both flanks at times, and sometimes running down the middle in the direction where we were (but we were still a safe distance away!).
2. Dukono. A complex volcano located on the north western side of Halmahera. The volcano has been almost continuously erupting since 1933 - mixture of degassing, ash eruptions and strombolian activity from the vents in the crater shooting lava bombs high up in the air. The 3h hike up to the base of the crater (our campsite) was tough. The area was quite surreal and covered in ash. The volcano was continuously degassing (at times accompanied by ash eruptions) from the time we arrived. We set off at 2am to cautiously approach the rim of the crater and as we got near, put on the necessary safety equipment (goggles, helmet and gas mask). Peering down into the crater, we could see the glowing vent (as a guess about 150-200m down) and some strombolian activity . Although I tried, I was unable to get any decent footage of the activity due to the gases constantly disrupting the focussing of the camera and the fact that I was wearing safety goggles (making manual focussing difficult). However, simply peering down at the glowing vent, going in and out of view with the gasses passing over it, was really a sight to behold!
3. Ibu. Ibu is also a stratovolcano and it took us 4-5 hours to trek up the rim of the crater from where the vehicles dropped us. The hike was on a good, but at times a steep trail. As we approached the crater rim we came across some andesitic lava bombs from the 2018 eruption near the trail. We set up camp on the crater rim, looking across to the lava dome, which at relatively frequent intervals, belched out huge clouds of steam and ash, at times explosively sounding like an aeroplane taking off. At night you could see the glow of the lava bombs being emitted, and at times lightening during strong ash eruptions. On the first night, I briefly went to sleep in my tent but was woken up shortly after, at about 1.30 am, by the ground and the tent shaking from side to side. Although it seemed like a long time to me, I guess this was very brief (a few seconds). Apparently, the shaking was due to a 7.1 magnitude earthquake (depth of 45km) that occurred in the Molucca sea on or near the sub-ducted Halmahera plate and the overlying Sunda plate. The epicentre was approx 138km east of Bitung and approx. 150km west from where we were. Minor shakes (barely detectable) continued at intervals throughout the night and the next day. Although I had experienced similar earthquake shakes when young in Mbeya, Tanzania (the place where I was born and which is close to the African Rift valley), I must admit that this was a bit of a scary moment. On the second night, there was quite a lot of fog obscuring the view of the eruptions and so I took the opportunity to get some sleep. Which was just as well since at some point during the night, the wind had changed direction and the ash clouds instead of blowing away from the campsite, were now blowing directly above us. Ash rained down on the tents a few minutes after each eruption. Walking up the crater rim a little further you could look down across to the lava dome. It may be just my imagination, but the lava dome appeared to have grown a little over the time we were there and may be continuing to grow possibly leading to a big explosive eruption in the future!
Overall this trip was an amazing experience....high on the adventure scale with lots of unforgettable memories (like experiencing an earthquake whilst camped out on an active volcano). These volcanoes are some of the world's most active and I would like to acknowledge our guide and volcanologist, Andi Rosadi (who also cooked at the campsites), who made it possible for us to get up close and personal with them. Andi has a lot of experience of these volcanoes and is very familiar with their characteristics to know when, where and how to approach them safely. The trip was very well organised and the logistics were flawless.
My 2 day visit to Singapore was good but far too short as there are lots of attractions to cover. Those of you who have already been there will know that it is a vast contrast to most other cities in that it's clean, safe, controlled (for example you are not allowed to eat or drink in station concourses or trains) and efficient. The metro stations and the trains are air conditioned and offer respite from the hot humid conditions outside. I particularly enjoyed the gardens by the bay and the walk along the Singapore river to the bay, and of course, I couldn't come away without sampling the rather expensive but infamous Singapore Sling at the Raffles Hotel.
With best wishes, Jay
Jay R. (UK) about the recent Volcanoes & Spices tour in Aug 2018
Watch his great video: https://www.flickr.com/photos/jay-ramji/albums/72157712016402452
"...one of the impressive, organized tours I had take part in" (Jens-Wolfram E., about the Volcanoes & Spices tour)
Dear Tom, dear Irina,
returned at the mid of week from Indonesia, I'd like to give you a very positive feed back from our Tour "Volcanoes & Spices". Our indonesian guide, Andi Rosadi, and his team with Donald, John and all the other supporter and helper had made this journey to one of the impressive, organized tours I had take part in. We enjoyed not only an Adventure to visit some of the most active volcanoes in this region, we also were very happy to be with a real optimistical, engaged and enthusiatical guide who tried to feed us besides the expeditions - with the best meals Indonesia has to offer. Andi – one of the experts with best connections to his colleagues in this country - has had always an open ear to the problems of every member in the group and he was able to manage even the problems arising when people of vary different physical Fitness have the only dream: To be as close as possible to the „beasts“…
After the tours with „Volcanoes Discovery“ I traveled to the South in Sulawesi and from there to the Toraja-Area where an acquaintance of him showed me many interesting secrets like the rock graves not only in the touristic areas.
Dear Tom, dear Irina,
have again many thanks for this trip.
I wish you a great Christmas time and the best for 2020.
Jens-Wolfram Erben (Germany) about the recent Volcanoes & Spices tour in Nov 2019
...I highly recommend this trip. (Giannella G., USA, about the Etna Discovery tour)
Here is a short testimonial about my wonderful Mt. Etna experience:
I took Volcano Adventure's “Etna Discovery” trekking excursion May 2019. Months later, I am still smiling over the great views, unexpected hornito eruption and excellent guiding by volcanologist, Evelyne Pradal. Each day we covered a new area, exploring the stunning diversity of Etna's slopes — beech forests, tube caves, scorched lava sands, ropey pahoehoe, a stunning ash valley, and so much more.
Pradal knows Etna well, having led many groups there over the years. She and the local guides who accompanied us daily shared fascinating information about the history of the volcano and its lava flows. We stayed at a comfortable, rustic lodge, where every night after a hot shower and before dinner, we sat in front of a cozy fireplace discussing the day's experiences over wine.
We trekked anywhere from three to six hours per day and spent one rest day visiting the lovely town of Taormina, a Norman castle built on top of a hydromagma volcano, and Gola Alcantara, a river canyon with spectacular, columnar lava formations. I highly recommend this trip. In fact, I enjoyed it so much that I plan to do it again next year!
Here is the link to my Erta Ale article.
(Giannella G., USA, about the Etna Discovery tour)
We just wanted to thank you and your team again for making our recent volcano adventure in Kamchatka such a fantastic experience. The VD team of Irena, Andre, and Yasmin made sure we were well looked after at all times. Irena kept us well fed and happy no matter what the conditions; Yasmin's vast knowledge and seemingly infinite enthusiasm were always inspiring; and Andre was the best adventure guide we've ever had! All in all it was just amazing. We were lucky with the weather and the volcanoes, but the VD team and our engaging group made everything perfect. So thanks again! Perhaps we will meet again on a volcano in the future.
(Mike & Leslie, AU about the Kamchatka expedition in Aug 2019)
"a great trip to the far east of Sibiria, Kamtchatka, with loads of volcanoes, bears (and a few mosquitoes)" (Kamchatka expedition in Aug 2019)
I recently returned from a great trip to the far east of Sibiria, Kamtchatka, with loads of volcanoes, bears (and a few mosquitoes). Thanks so much to our guides, Irina, Andrey and Yashmin who made this great experience possible!
(Markus Heuer, DE about the Kamchatka expedition in Aug 2019)
We want to say thank you for a wonderful trip in Kamchatka, we have enjoyed very much to see such a huge nature, active volcanoes and eruptions and every time you have take care or us . Our food was excellent. Our group was perfect. Next time when we have a chance to visit Kamchatka again, we would like to see more from the country, its history and residents.
Many greetings and all the best wishes to you!
(Christine Reuter and Peter Schöderlein, DE about the Kamchatka expedition in Aug 2019)
"Kamchatka is a spectacular place with the most impressive volcanoes I have seen" (Kamchatka expedition in Aug 2019)
I toured the volcanoes of Kamchatka with Volcano Discovery in August of 2019. Kamchatka is a spectacular place with the most impressive volcanoes I have seen. The area is a true wilderness with little infrastructure and few towns yet we were very comfortable on the tour. Our campsites were well chosen, the meal tent was spacious and comfortable and the food was amazing given the remoteness. Hiking and camping makes for a good appetite but we were always well fed with lots of good food. The Volcano Discovery staff were very friendly, cheerful and committed to ensuring we had a good time and got the most out of our trip. The guides were knowledgeable and the hikes well chosen and explained. I would repeat the trip with Volcano Discovery, it was that good, but there are so many other volcanoes still to see. I have already booked on the Volcano Discovery trekking tour to the Molucca Sea, Sulawesi, Karangetang and Halmahera in May next year.
(Gordon Graham about the Kamchatka expedition in Aug 2019)
Thank you for the photos. Some great memories.
Enjoyed all the volcanology tutorials, you were very patient with my endless questions.
Also enjoyed our more wide ranging evening time conversations fuelled by Abkhazian vino and vodka!
Until the next time.
(Guy L., UK about the Kamchatka expedition in Sep 2019
"Thanks for making our visit a great experience" (Larray & Linda from Oregon about the tour on Santorini)
Feedback from our guests
The small group, guided by Tobias Schorr
The cinder cone and red beach at Acrotiri.
Often, we receive very nice cards or other small signs of appreciation after a tour has ended. Here's an example from our recent tour tour on Santorini in May 2019. More photos of the tour you can find here Tour Photos.