Tourist Accidentally Falls In Active Volcano As Her Husband Snaps Final Photo

A tourist has died after plunging to her death into an active volcano while trying to capture the perfect holiday snap.
Credit: Alamy &

A tourist has died after plunging to her death into an active volcano while trying to capture the perfect holiday snap.

Many of us spend our vacations prioritising getting pictures to take home and show off to our friends.

However, for one tourist, this plight turned out to be deadly.

She was trying to get the perfect photo of herself by an active volcano, but, tragically, ended up falling 250ft into the crater.

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The victim, named as 31-year-old Chinese national Huang Lihong, fell into the Ijen Crater in Banyuwangi, Indonesia, on April 20, according to The Straits Times.

Mount Ijen resides within a cluster of volcanoes situated on the boundary between Banyuwangi and Bondowoso in East Java.

These volcanoes are renowned for the phenomenon known as ‘blue fire’, caused by the combustion of sulphuric gases.

Mount Ijen
A tourist has died after plunging 250ft into a crater of an active volcano ‘while posing for pictures’. Credit: Alamy

“In general, Mount Ijen is safe enough to visit. However, you must make sure that you are completely healthy when being there. If you have asthma or other respiratory problems, it is better to skip the blue fire area,” per Ijen Volcano Tour.

The site also confirms that tourists visiting Mount Ijen often express concern about the possibility of a volcanic explosion.

However, it writes there’s no need to be overly anxious about this.

While Mount Ijen is classified as an active volcano, such events are infrequent and typically not sudden.

It’s generally safe to visit the attraction unless there’s an official alert status indicating otherwise.

But, devastatingly, this wasn’t the case for Lihong – people have been horrified by the tragic news.

Mount Ijen
People have been paying tribute to Huang Lihong after her tragic death. Credit: Alamy

One writes: “That’s horrible, no words but so sorry to the family and may she be resting in peace in a paradise where she will never hurt again. She’s paid a heavy price, what a horrible way to die.”

Another person pens: “Oh my goodness, this is so unfortunate. My deepest condolences to her family.”

A third commenter writes: “Why was she allowed to get so close? So sad.”

Lihong and her husband, Zhang Yong, had reportedly climbed the slope with a local guide so they could watch the dramatic sunrise from the volcano’s edge.

While Lihong was posing for the photos, her skirt reportedly snagged, leading her to stumble.

She then tumbled backwards over the crater’s edge, much to the shock of her husband, who tragically witnessed it all.

Huang Lihong
Huang Lihong’s husband, Zhang Yong, tragically watched his wife fall to her death. Credit:

A photograph captured her just moments before the accident, seemingly posing on the volcano’s rim amid swirling clouds of steam and sulfur gas, per the New York Post.

Local media said that she fell 250ft into the mouth of the volcano and it took rescuers more than two hours to retrieve her body.

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The tour guide later told authorities that Lihong had initially kept a safe distance of 2m to 3m away from the edge of the cliff after being repeatedly warned of the dangers while posing for snaps.

Dwi Putro Sugiarto, the head of the Department of Conservation for the Banyuwangi region, confirmed the incident was an accident.

He also stressed the importance of tourists exercising extreme caution when scaling mountains.

Reportedly, Lihong’s body will first be transported to Bali before being airlifted back to China.

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Written by Annie Walton Doyle

Annie Walton Doyle is a content editor at IGV who specialises in trending, lifestyle and entertainment news. She graduated from Goldsmiths, University of London, with a degree in English Literature. Annie has previously worked with organisations such as The Huffington Post, The Guardian, The Telegraph, Harvard University, the Pulitzer Prize and 22 Words.