German volcanologist Dr. Tom Pfeiffer, founder and general manager of VolcanoDiscovery, is passionate about volcanoes ever since he first saw an eruption on Mt. Etna. He has been guiding / organizing tours since 1997 and he founded VolcanoDiscovery back in 2004.
Tom obtained his PhD degree about the Santorini volcano and has worked at the volcano observatories of Hawaii and Vesuvius volcano. Besides being the main organizer of all our VolcanoAdventures itineraries he personally guides many of the European tours as well as the occasional volcano expeditions which are offered when an important eruption occurs.
During his travels, he found one his strongest passion in photography and the sharing of his knowledge and the living adventures outside the scientific community. His photographs and a large number of articles about volcanoes have been published in newspapers and magazines such as National Geographic, Scientific American (April 2003 issue about Etna), and others. Other activities include the assistance of documentary film productions about Santorini (“The myth of the lost city of Atlantis”, "Mystery Hunters", both on Discovery Channel) and Stromboli (“Quarks and co: Vulkane” recently aired by the German television channel WDR), and the ongoing series "Volcanic Odysseys" by Canadian filmmaker Michael Dalton.
Tom speaks English, Danish and Italian fluently (besides German, of course) and Greek and French with some Spanish quite well. He has spent a total of about 2 years in Italy (Rome, Sicily, Naples Volcano Observatory), a year on Santorini in Greece, as well as worked for 4 months at the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, lived in Denmark for 7 years before moving to Athens in 2004.
Adi Susanto Rosadi ("Andi") from Yogyakarta, Indonesia, is our principal expedition organizer and famous as volcano tour guide in Indonesia. He's been traveling around the country's many active volcanoes since he was a teenager and knows them better than anyone else, and maintains close contacts with volcanologists.
Andi is also Chairman of the Central Board of Special Interest Tour Guide Association of Indonesia (ITGA), National Trainer of Volcanological and Geo-tourism Tour Guides in Indonesia, Member of Indonesian Geologist Association (IAGI ) NPA 6339, and also Member of Volcanological Society e.V. based in Germany.
The organiser and main guide of all our Danakil volcano expeditions in Ethiopia is Enku Mulugeta. After obtaining a Diploma in Travel Organising and completing his BSc in Geology at the University of Addis Ababa, he spend 22 years traveling through Ethiopia whilst working both as free-lance travel guide and a contracted mining geologist for different oil and gold mining companies. Since 2006 he specialised in geological travel guidance for the Danakil depression and hence has lots of experience and competence in organizing expeditions to Erta Ale and Dallol. He likes to share his vast knowledge on the geology of the Danakil but will also gladly answer any questions you might have regarding Ethiopia´s fauna and flora, culture, history, food or traditions!
Dr. Evelyne Pradal is a trained geologist and volcanologist with a passion of showing and teaching her subject to the general public. Born in Aurillac, in the heart of the Auvergne, Central Europe's youngest volcanic field, she studied in the renowned Center of Earth Science of the university of Clermont-Ferrand, one of France's leading research institutes in the field of volcanology.
Her research led her to study volcanoes in Mexico, the Caribbean, Ethiopia and other areas.
After completing her doctorate degee in 1990 she went on to work as consultant and teacher in earth sciences, and she has been organizing expeditions and study trips to volcanoes in Italy, France, the Caribbean, Ethiopia and Tanzania designed to share knowledge and the fascination of her subject, the beauty of our living earth, to the general public. She also co-authored the book "Au coeur des volcans" (2004, Ed. Fleurus - Geo Ados). Evelyne with her charming smile joined our team in 2010 and guides trips to Etna, Ethiopia, the Caribbean, and a new study trip in the Auvergne, her homeland.
Professional mountain climber and adventure tour guide from Java, Yohannes Tyas Galih Jati ("Galih") has been leading many of our tours and expeditions in Java and other parts of Indonesia, working closely together with Andi. His passion for volcanoes, knowledge about them and his country, people and organization skills are outstanding. People love Galih also for his extraordinary patience, balance and humor on many levels. Over the years, he has become one of our most trusted tour guides.
Charming Irina Vakhitova from Saint Petersburg, Russia, is our general sales & product manager for our tours and expeditions. Her year-long experience and training in the tourism industry, in particular when working in outdoor tour operators in Russia, gave her the perfect background to work with us on worldwide destinations. Her passion and love for traveling joins her ability to keep all details in place and help you answer any question you might have!
Irina is not only our sales manages, but she actively co-guides some expeditions, in particular Kamchatka where she actually grew up before moving to Saint Petersburg!
Dr. Marco Fulle is an Italian astronomer and volcano expert considered to be among the best volcano photographers world-wide. His specialty is Mt. Etna and with his photographs he is co-author of the popular educative website Stromboli Online. He and Tom lived many volcano adventures together, making them an excellent eruption-observing team and close friends. Marco guides some of our volcano tours in Italy, in particular to Etna and Stromboli. Mt. Etna is however his most beloved volcano which he considers as his "second home".
German photographer Tobias Schorr has been a passionate hobby geologist, mineral collector and fan of Greece since his childhood. In 2005, together with Tom, he co-founded the previous tour company of VolcanoDiscovery, which was split up into two new companies in 2015, to better accommodate the different focus of the growing variety of tours offered.
For many years, Tobias has been running www.methana.com - an extensive website dedicated to the Greek volcanic areas, in particular his second home Methana with a myriad of information and pictures about nature, history and culture of this hidden gem of Greece. He offers a wide range of natural-history and photography interest tours in Europe and beyond: Nature Discovery Tours.
French volcanologist Yashmin Chebli is convincing when he says that he has always been fascinated by the raw power of nature and the beauty of the universe. This passion led him to study volcanoes at university and brought him to Peru and Italy. The fact that he likes to share this passion and is skilled in organizing and communicating allowed him to start a parallel career as expedition organizer to volcanoes on Hawaii, Indonesia, Vanuatu and elsewhere. He has 15 years of experience of guiding groups and individuals around new adventurous destinations all over the world. His talent and enthusiasm in what he's doing is second to none! Yashmin is largely in charge of our French section and creating tours aimed towards French-speaking clients.