White Island or Whakaari is an active andesite stratovolcano, situated in the Bay of Plenty, 48 km off the east coast of the North Island of New Zealand. At 2.11pm on December 9, when Whakaari/White Island spewed scalding steam, rocks and ash into the air, 47 people were on or near the island. Police have so far confirmed 16 people have died. Divers know at least one of the missing bodies is in waters near White Island. And when we say active, we mean very active – it is the most active cone volcano in all of New Zealand, a land known for its volcanic activity. Its volcano is still very much active and the island is about 2km in diameter which makes it perfect to explore on foot. White Island is located in the Bay of Plenty of the east coast of the North Island.

At least five people were killed and eight more are still missing following a deadly volcanic eruption on New Zealand's White Island Monday. White Island recovery: One body in water as police release images of 'harrowing' search - NZ Herald New Zealand Herald

It was so named by Captain Cook who was the first European to sight the island.

There were 47 people on the island at the time, with the eruption killing at least sixteen people and seriously injuring 28.

Police in New Zealand have said they do not expect to find any more survivors from a volcanic eruption on White Island that killed at least five people and injured up to 20. Moments before New Zealand's most active volcano erupted on Monday, tourists were seen walking inside its rim. Auckland’s Buttle family owns White Island, also known as Whakaari, one of a few privately-owned islands throughout New Zealand, property records show.