Pulau Kumba is erupting! – Part 2

In 1849 the British naval ship, HMS Maeander, captained by Henry Keppel sailed from Singapore to Batavia (Jakarta) then to Australia, New Zealand and across to the Pacific coast of the United States.

HMS Maeander by Oswald Brierly

Pulau Kumba is located in the Flores Sea of Eastern Indonesia and lies north of the island of Lembata. The island must be sitting over a hot spot in the earth’s mantle as it seems to have been actively erupting over many years. While sailing the Indonesian archipelago HMS Maeander encountered what they called Comba Island and Oswald Brierly produced this dramatic painting.

HMS Maeander at Comba Island,1849, Oswald Brierly
From ‘A visit to the Indian Archipelago’ by Captain Henry Keppel.

The sailing ship Vega stopped at Pulau Kumba in 2015 and its captain Shane Granger took this beautiful photograph of the island, its still active volcano and an unusual smoke ring.

Pulau Kumba an active volcanic island in the Flores Sea
The location of Pulau Kumba

We visited there with the Ombak Putih in 2016 but the eruption was not quite as spectacular.

Pulau Kumba is erupting


About ianburnet

Author of the book, Spice Islands. Which tells the History, Romance and Adventure of the spice trade from the Moluccas in Eastern Indonesia over a period of 2000 years. Author of the book, East Indies.Which tells the history of the struggle between the Portuguese Crown, the Dutch East India Company and the English East India Company for supremacy in the Eastern Seas. Author of the book 'Archipelago - A Journey Across Indonesia'. Author of the book 'Where Australia Collides with Asia' Author of the book 'The Tasman Map'. Author of the book 'Eastern Voyages'.
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9 Responses to Pulau Kumba is erupting! – Part 2

  1. Randy Rutledge says:

    Wow! I’ve never heard of this island. I haven’t read about it in the local Jakarta press. Were you there recently Ian?

  2. ianburnet says:

    Hello Randy. We were there with the Ombak Putih in 2016 and hoping to see it erupting. I think this was the year after you did the same voyage through the Eastern islands.

  3. Rahmat says:

    Thanks, Ian. Very interesting. Another volcano that is more active than usual (and closer to home) is the volcano in the island of Anak Krakatau. Mt. Merapi is also active again. We live in interesting times.

  4. Sia Arnason says:

    Thanks,Ian – it is always special to receive an email with “news” from Indonesia and our beloved islands. Please keep it up!

  5. Sia Arnason says:

    Thanks for all the nesw and then some about Indonesia! Wished I was there. Love, Soia

  6. rochelimit55555 says:

    Wow so many volcanoes in Indonesia, even one I never heard before. That 2015 smoke ring photo looks so pretty…. pretty ominous🙃

  7. ianburnet says:

    According to Google there are 147 volcanoes in Indonesia. But I don’t know if they included Pulau Kumba!

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