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Toba

Photo of this volcano
  • Indonesia
  • Indonesia
  • Caldera
  • Unknown - Evidence Credible
  • Country
  • Volcanic Region
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 2.58°N
  • 98.83°E

  • 2157 m
    7077 ft

  • 261090
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit
    Elevation

  • Volcano
    Number

The Global Volcanism Program has no activity reports for Toba.

The Global Volcanism Program has no Weekly Reports available for Toba.

The Global Volcanism Program has no Bulletin Reports available for Toba.

This compilation of synonyms and subsidiary features may not be comprehensive. Features are organized into four major categories: Cones, Craters, Domes, and Thermal Features. Synonyms of features appear indented below the primary name. In some cases additional feature type, elevation, or location details are provided.

Eruptive History

The Global Volcanism Program is not aware of any Holocene eruptions from Toba. If this volcano has had large eruptions (VEI >= 4) prior to 10,000 years ago, information might be found on the Toba page in the LaMEVE (Large Magnitude Explosive Volcanic Eruptions) database, a part of the Volcano Global Risk Identification and Analysis Project (VOGRIPA).

Deformation History

There is no Deformation History data available for Toba.

Emission History

There is no Emissions History data available for Toba.

Photo Gallery

Lake Toba, the largest lake in SE Asia, fills more than half of the 35 x 100 km Toba caldera, the Earth's largest Quaternary caldera. The caldera walls rise steeply 400-1,200 m above the 1,700 km2 lake, which is one of the world's deepest with a maximum depth of 530 m. This view looks south from the northern caldera rim.

Photo by Tom Casadevall, 1987 (U.S. Geological Survey).
See title for photo information.
The northern wall of Toba caldera rises about 500 m above the village of Haranggoal. Samosir Island, visible in the distance across Lake Toba on the right, is part of an uplifted block of caldera-fill deposits from the last major eruption of Toba about 74,000 years ago.

Photo by Tom Casadevall, 1987 (U.S. Geological Survey)
See title for photo information.
The 35 x 100 km Toba caldera was formed during four powerful explosive eruptions beginning 1.2 million years ago. The latest of these, about 74,000 years ago, was one of the world's largest known Quaternary eruptions, producing the Young Toba Tuff (YTT). The YTT consists of about 2,800 km3 DRE (dense rock equivalent) of ashfall and voluminous pyroclastic flow deposits, erupted from vents at the NW and SE ends of present-day Lake Toba.

Photo by Tom Casadevall, 1987 (U.S. Geological Survey)
See title for photo information.
The 35 x 100 km wide Toba caldera, partially filled by Sumatra's Lake Toba, is Earth's largest Quaternary caldera. This view looks W toward the northern end of Samosir Island, which is part of a block that was uplifted after eruption of the Young Toba Tuff (YTT) about 74,000 years ago. The island, once entirely covered by Lake Toba, is formed of caldera-fill deposits of YTT-capped by lake sediments.

Photo by Tom Casadevall, 1987 (U.S. Geological Survey)
See title for photo information.
The steep wall behind Tomok village on Samosir Island is part of a block of uplifted caldera-fill rocks. The entire 630 km2 island, which now rises to 700 m above Lake Toba, is capped with lake-floor sediments that were deposited before the island was uplifted above lake level.

Photo by Tom Casadevall, 1987 (U.S. Geological Survey)
See title for photo information.
Clouds obscure the summit of Pusukbukit, a young volcano that formed on the western margin of Toba caldera. An active geothermal area forms the light-colored area at the base of the volcano across the strait from Samosir Island on Lake Toba.

Photo by Tom Casadevall, 1987 (U.S. Geological Survey)
See title for photo information.
The 100-km-long Lake Toba is seen here from the northern end. The lake fills a 35 x 100 km caldera that formed during four major late-Pleistocene eruptions. The western caldera scarp forms the cliffs at the right. The low-angle slope on the left horizon is Samosir Island, half of a large resurgent block in the center of the caldera. The 1,700 km2 lake is the largest in SE Asia.

Anonymous, 1993.
See title for photo information.
The eastern wall of the Toba caldera forms the horizon across Lake Toba from Samosir Island in the foreground. The small Tuk-Tuk peninsula (center) extends into the lake from the 630 km2 island. The small conical peak on the horizon at left-center is Tandukbenua volcano, which may have erupted only a few hundred years ago.

Photo by Bill Rose, 1982 (Michigan Technological University).
See title for photo information.
Sipisopiso waterfall, at the northern end of Lake Toba, formed on a cliff in the Middle Toba Tuff (MTT) deposit. The MTT rhyolite ignimbrite (more than 60 km3) was emplaced about 500,000 years ago during the third largest of the four major Toba caldera-forming eruptions. Products of the densely welded MTT eruption are distributed over the northern part of the caldera.

Photo by Bill Rose, 1982 (Michigan Technological University).
See title for photo information.
Pusukbukit, a volcano in the Toba caldera, was constructed just within the western caldera rim. It is seen here across a narrow strait from Samosir Island, with light-colored areas containing fumaroles along its northern flank. The youngest lava flow on Pusukbukit is of dacitic composition.

Photo by Mike Dolan, 1993 (Michigan Technological University).
See title for photo information.
Tuk-Tuk, a small peninsula on Samosir Island, provides a vista of Latung Strait, which separates the opposing resurgent blocks of Samosir (right) and the Uluan block on the left. The Latung Strait marks the center of post-caldera resurgence, which tilted the Uluan block, located within the SE part of the caldera, to the SE and the Samosir Island block to the NE.

Photo by Mike Dolan, 1993 (Michigan Technological University).
See title for photo information.
Clouds rise above the summit of Pusukbukit (right), a post-caldera cone constructed just inside the western rim of Toba caldera. Lake Toba, which fills the caldera, is visible beyond the northern (left) flank of Pusukbukit.

Photo by Bill Rose, 1982 (Michigan Technological University).
See title for photo information.
Toba is Earth's largest Quaternary caldera and is partially filled by Lake Toba, seen here in a NASA Landsat satellite image (N is to the top). The 35 x 100 km caldera formed during four major ignimbrite-forming eruptions in the Pleistocene, the latest of which occurred about 74,000 years ago. The large island of Samosir is an uplifted resurgent dome.

NASA Landsat 7 image (worldwind.arc.nasa.gov)
See title for photo information.
GVP Map Holdings

The maps shown below have been scanned from the GVP map archives and include the volcano on this page. Clicking on the small images will load the full 300 dpi map. Very small-scale maps (such as world maps) are not included. The maps database originated over 30 years ago, but was only recently updated and connected to our main database. We welcome users to tell us if they see incorrect information or other problems with the maps; please use the Contact GVP link at the bottom of the page to send us email.


Title: Sibolga
Publisher: Bakosurtanal, Djakarta
Country: Indonesia
Year: 1986
Map Type: Topographic
Scale: 1:250,000
Map of Sibolga

Title: Sidikalang
Publisher: Bakosurtanal, Djakarta
Country: Indonesia
Year: 1986
Map Type: Topographic
Scale: 1:250,000
Map of Sidikalang

Title: Sibolga
Publisher: US Army Corps of Engineers
Country: Indonesia
Year: 1956
Series: T503
Map Type: Topographic
Scale: 1:250,000
Map of Sibolga

Title: Pangururan
Publisher: US Army Corps of Engineers
Country: Indonesia
Year: 1955
Series: T503
Map Type: Topographic
Scale: 1:250,000
Map of Pangururan

Title: Medan
Publisher: US Army Map Service
Country: Indonesia
Year: 1943
Series: AMS
Map Type: Topographic
Scale: 1:1,000,000
Map of Medan
Smithsonian Sample Collections Database

The following 12 samples associated with this volcano can be found in the Smithsonian's NMNH Department of Mineral Sciences collections, and may be availble for research (contact the Rock and Ore Collections Manager). Catalog number links will open a window with more information.

Catalog Number Sample Description Lava Source Collection Date
NMNH 117312-1 Pumice -- --
NMNH 117312-10 Tuff -- --
NMNH 117312-11 Tuff -- --
NMNH 117312-12 Tuff -- --
NMNH 117312-2 Pumice -- --
NMNH 117312-3 Pumice -- --
NMNH 117312-4 Pumice -- --
NMNH 117312-5 Pumice -- --
NMNH 117312-6 Tuff -- --
NMNH 117312-7 Tuff -- --
NMNH 117312-8 Tuff -- --
NMNH 117312-9 Tuff -- --
External Sites