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Volcano Climbing

At a glance: Climb the Santa Ana Volcano, the highest in the country, with magnificent views of other volcanoes and Coatepeque lake.

  • Full day trip, strenuous – sturdy shoes necessary

The Santa Ana Volcano (Spanish: volcán de Santa Ana) is a large stratovolcano located in the Santa Ana region of El Salvador. At 2,365 metres above sea level, it is the highest volcano in the country.

The summit of Santa Ana features four nested calderas and volcanic craters with the innermost containing a small crater lake. There have been numerous historical eruptions since the 16th century, both at the summit and from cinder cones on the lower flanks, and also the flank vents of San Marcelino located east of Santa Ana. The San Marcelino vents erupted in 1722 and flowed eastwards for 11 km, destroying the village of San Juan Tecpan.

In October, 2005, the volcano erupted, killing at least two people and injuring seven. Many people were forced to flee their villages. The volcano spat rocks for over 1.5 km (0.93 mi) with rocks the size of cars. The eruption contributed to the damage from Hurricane Stan. The most recent previous eruption had been in 1904.