Mount Agung in Indonesia
One of Southeast Asias most popular holiday spots and a special favorite amidst Indians, Bali, is facing an obstacle this tourist season. The tourism hotspot is under the threat of a volcanic eruption at one of its prime attractions. According to reports from the disaster management agency in Indonesia, several locals have fled from the area surrounding Mount Agung amidst fears that the active volcano will erupt. The active volcanic region has been hit by 300 huge tremors over a six-hour period. Almost 35,000 people have already been evacuated from the area as a result of two fires breaking out last week. Another 50,000 could be added to this list if the volcano does erupt. Alert levels have been raised twice in the past week and the size of the restricted zone surrounding the mountain has doubled. As of now, a 12 km zone circling the mountain has been declared unsafe. This in turn has prompted several departments of foreign affairs, like that of Australias, to warn tourists to stay away from Bali. Also Read - Ms. & Mrs. Gorgeous Worldwide Beauty Pageant to be Held in Bali in May
Despite the threat of the volcano, several tourism chiefs continue to encourage tourists declaring the island safe to visit. The Bali international airport is also functioning as normal with around 60,000 passengers using it daily. Some Indonesian authorities like Director General of air transport, Agus Santoso, have insisted that the island is safe to visit and that there has been no eruption yet and no ash has been sighted. Also Read - Indonesian Man Dresses Up as Spider-Man To Clean Up Plastic Waste, Urges Others to Do the Same
Beautiful morning view of Mount Agung
Agung is located 70 km northeast of the famous tourist attraction Kuta. It is home to more than a hundred active volcanoes including the mountain under threat. The reason why this threat needs to be taken seriously is because when Mount Agung last erupted in 1963, more than 1,000 people were killed and several others injured. The 3,031-metre volcano had remained active for many months with volcanic ash rising up to heights of of around 10 km. It is therefore prudent to avoid the region till the threat is cleared. While Mount Agung is a hiking delight and draws in adventurers from all around the world, visiting it right now would not be an adventure worth it. However, The National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) of Indonesia has declared that several other tourist sites in Bali are safe to visit. These attractions include Tanah Lot, Uluwatu, Beratan Bedugul Lake and Tampak Siring Castle, Bali Safari and Marine Park, Garuda Wisnu Kencana, Sanur Beach, Tanjung Benoa, Goa Gajah, Nusa Penida area and even the Kuta Beach are still safe to visit. This tweet gives you a picture of the areas that would be under threat if the volcano does erupt: Also Read - Malaysia PM Defends Criticism Over CAA, Says 'Need to be Frank' Despite India's Palm Oil Curbs
While BNPB information data central and public relations head Sutopo Purwo Nugroho confirmed the increase in the volcanic activity of Mount Agung, he also said that apart from the restricted radius that has been announced by the PVMBG, tourism in Bali is still safe up until now.