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Photo of this volcano
  • Indonesia
  • Sunda Volcanic Arc
  • Caldera | Caldera
  • Unknown - Evidence Credible
  • Country
  • Volcanic Province
  • Landform | Volc Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 2.6083°N
  • 98.8417°E

  • 2,157 m
    7,077 ft

  • 261090
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit

  • Volcano

The Global Volcanism Program has no activity reports available 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).
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)
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).

Photo by Tom Casadevall, 1987 (U.S. Geological Survey)
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)
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)
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)
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.
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).
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).
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).
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).
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).
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)
The 30 x 100 km Toba caldera formed during four major eruptions, the most recent occurring 74,000 years ago when it erupted the Young Toba Tuff. Samosir Island is an area of resurgence within the caldera, formed by uplifting of the caldera floor by at least 1.1 km over thousands of years. N is at the top of this 21 June 2019 Sentinel-2 satellite image.

Satellite image courtesy of Copernicus Sentinel Data, 2019.
GVP Map Holdings

Maps are not currently available due to technical issues.

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.

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 -- --
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