Kelimutu Volcano

Kelimutu Volcano - three lakes together aerial

The Kelimutu Volcano is located in Moni, a small town in the Flores island, Indonesia. It is more famous for its tri-colored lakes than for its volcanism. There are only three times when explosive activity at Kelimutu has been recorded: in 1865, 1938 and in 1968. The two adjacent lakes of Kelimutu are named Tiwu Nuamuri Ko’ofai (Lake of Young Men and Maidens) and Tiwa Atapolo (Bewitched Lake).

The enigma of their different colors can be explained by the varying geothermal processes, level of annual rainfall and their acidic nature, which is maintained due to submersed fumaroles.

A crater wall divides these two lakes, which are respectively green and dark red. The latter iz due to an extreme ferric oxide level. Tiwu Ata Bupu (Lake of Old People) is alone on the westernmost side, usually presenting a dark blue coloration.

The Kelimutu Volcano is a famous tourist point due to these enigmatic three colored lakes, which started to attract worldwide attention after being seen and described by the first westerners in the early 1900s. The best time to visit is during the afternoon, as the weather is usually clear. Due to their strange colors, locals tend to believe that the lakes are the dwellings of spirits.