When you were younger, were you one of these kids that were amazingly fascinated by lava? I was, and according to most people I meet, I still am! In the beautiful city of Antigua, Guatemala you can by paying 14 USD join a trip up on what is claimed to be the most active volcano in the world!
For those that are curious, this kind of trip would not have been allowed in the States, maybe in Europe, after some kind of liability-contract. But it felt secure enough, 300 people (if not more?) do this trip daily, and I consulted the national travel information office in Antigua.
After a gently 3km climb we reached the “point of no security”. This lava flow happened three years ago, and was the starting point of touristic climbs of the volcano, because in the same eruption lava now started to flow gently out from some cracks in the lower east slope of the mountain.
Still as a friendly reminder of the fact that you are climbing a volcano, each minute or so you’ll her an explosion from the peak, and you’ll see rocks that is thrown 30m up in the air!
Then up at the lava site (in a safe distance from the crater, no rocks thin the head), you can actually see the REAL lava seeping out. In fact there is not only lava, there is heat as well. Because of that; those facebook profile-pictures were tried taken in a rush. If you have ever worked at a pizzaplace, the heat is similar to the heat experienced when the oven is wide-open (at least experienced from the Vertshuset pizza oven). The favourite activity among those 150+ people on the site was to grill marshmallows and to poke the lava with your newly bought stick. You could walk around and do whatever; I enjoyed just being so close to one of mother earths mysteries, but also I was amazed by the fact that none got injured (the terrain was rough and the lava obviously hot)