Coolest Volcanoes in Africa

Africa is known for its deserts, endless savannas and rainforests. But less attention is given to its volcanoes, which are among the highest and most interesting in the world. The fact that Africa doesn’t have the mountain ranges of Asia or the Americas make its isolated volcanoes become really unique.
Although volcanic activity and even features like hot springs and geysers can be encountered across the African continent, they are far from being the norm here. This is one of the reasons why most of the volcanoes, despite their impressive height, represent popular destinations. For all those with a sense of adventure and with a curiosity regarding volcanic phenomena, here are the coolest volcanoes in Africa:

Mt. Kenya

by john spooner

Mt. Kenya is probably the best known of all African mountains: it’s the symbol of Kenya and the one which inspired the country’s name. The mountain is only second to Kilimanjaro in what concerns the altitude and was declared a national park by the Kenyan government. Mt. Kenya is now an extinct volcano, still its spiky peaks are 5199m high: climbers ascending Mt. Kenya can enjoy both the ecuatorial fauna at its base and the permanent snows on its peak.

Kilimanjaro

by stig nygaard

Close to Mt. Kenya one can find Africa’s tallest mountain, Kilimanjaro. This one is also a volcano but this time an active one (the scientific name is stratovolcano). With unique geological and biological features, the mountain is a top destination in Tanzania. However, due to global warming and the greenhouse effect, the superb snowcap covering the mountain’s top is shrinking by each day.

Ol Doinyo Lengai

by cessna-206

Also in Tanzania one can visit Ol Doinyo Dengai, which translates from local dialect as the Mountain of God. Unlike the previously mentioned volcanoes Ol Doinyo Lengai is quite active, and small eruptions occur every several years. The unusual composition of the lava makes the mountain look like a huge ice come: when it gets cold, the lava turns light grey.

Mount Cameroon

Its location close to the sea made Mount Cameroon one of the best known if Africa. Stories about Mt. Cameroon’s eruption go back to the 5th century BC. Although it’s not as tall as Kenya or Kilimanjaro, the summit of Mt. Cameroon still reaches impressive heights: a little over 4000 m. The latest major eruption occurred in 1999, when the river of incandescent lava destroyed a highsway and almost reached the sea.

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