Mount Agung photos: Tens of thousands flee Bali volcano 'about to erupt'

Fears that a volcano on the Indonesian tourist island of Bali is about to erupt have sparked an exodus of more than 75,000 people. The region is being shaken daily by hundreds of tremors from the mountain, which volcanologists say indicates a high chance of an eruption. Mount Agung last erupted in 1963, killing about 1,100 people.

A view of Mount Agung from Karangasem Regency, on the resort island of BaliDarren Whiteside/Reuters
A family transport their belongings on a truck as they are evacuated to a safer placeUlet Ifansasti/Getty Images
Villagers evacuate their cattle near Mount Agung on BaliSonny Tumbelaka/AFP
People are seen at evacuation centre in Klungkung regency, Island of BaliUlet Ifansasti/Getty Images

Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, the United States and the UK have all issued warning that increased volcanic activity at Mount Agung in eastern Bali could disrupt flights to and from one of the world's most popular tourist destinations.

Flights at Bali's international airport were operating as per normal on Monday (25 September) as were tourist spots across the rest of the island.

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A tourist takes a picture of the sun setting behind Mount Agung, from Amed on the resort island of Bali, IndonesiaDarren Whiteside/Reuters
Tourists from Australia take a picture in front of Mount Agung in Karangasem regency, BaliUlet Ifansasti/Getty Images
Tourists have a drink in Amed on the resort island of Bali, while watching the sunset behind Mount AgungDarren Whiteside/Reuters

Authorities have ordered the evacuation of villagers living within a "danger zone" that in places extends 12 kilometres (7.5 miles) from Mount Agung's crater. But people further away are also leaving, said National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho.

Evacuees are being housed in makeshift shelters like town halls and school gyms. Host communities were providing food and water, while the central and local governments were providing tents, blankets and other relief.

A woman from evacuated from a village near the summit of Mount Agung is helped at a temporary shelter in Klungkung, on the resort island of BaliAntara Foto/Nyoman Budhiana/Reuters
A woman evacuated from a village located along the slopes of Mount Agung rests at a temporary shelter in Rendang, on the resort island of BaliDarren Whiteside/Reuters
Volunteers put up a tent at an evacuation centre in Klungkung regency, BaliUlet Ifansasti/Getty Images
A child eats inside an evacuation centre in Klungkung regency, on the Indonesian resort island of BaliSonny Tumbelaka/AFP
A woman waits inside an evacuation centre in Klungkung regency, on the Indonesian resort island of BaliSonny Tumbelaka/AFP

BNPB said that around 62,000 people lived within the "danger zone" around the volcano and that they all needed to evacuate, though not everybody had heeded the warnings. "There are some who are staying behind because the volcano hasn't erupted yet or because of religious beliefs," said Nugroho.

Balinese worshippers look at Mount Agung, shrouded in cloud, from the gate of Penataran Agung Lempuyang temple in Karangasem Regency, on the resort island of BaliDarren Whiteside/Reuters
Balinese Hindu worshippers perform a ceremony in Kubu village, Karangasem regency, inside the danger zoneUlet Ifansasti/Getty Images
Balinese Hindu worshippers pray at Besakih temple, within the danger zone, as mount Agung is seen in the backgroundUlet Ifansasti/Getty Images
People look towards Mount Agung in Karangasem on the Indonesian resort island of BaliSonny Tumbelaka/AFP

Nugroho said Mount Agung has entered a "critical phase", meaning magma has risen closer to the surface, as indicated by hundreds of shallow volcanic tremors that have rattled the area in recent days. Officials have urged the public to remain calm amid false reports and videos circulating online of an eruption.

Mount Agung is seen from Mataram on nearby Lombok island, IndonesiaAntara Foto/Ahmad Subaidi/Reuters

When Agung erupted in 1963, it hurled ash as high as 20 kilometres (12 miles) and remained active for about a year. Lava traveled 7.5 kilometres (4.7 miles) and ash reached Jakarta, about 1,000 kilometres (620 miles) away.

Indonesia, which sits on the so-called Pacific Ring of Fire, has nearly 130 active volcanoes, more than any other country. Many Indonesians live near volcanoes because lava flows can make the surrounding soil and land fertile for farming.

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