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DISCOVER THE NATURAL WONDERS OF NORTH ICELAND

A volcanic wonderland sprawling across 37 square kilometres in the far north of Iceland, the Mývatn region is a place of unique natural beauty that’s home to the fourth largest lake in the country. The waters here are shallow, just four metres at their deepest, while its tiny islands are inhabited by an abundance of wildlife. A sparsely populated and perfectly serene place, the main settlement is Reykjahlíð – a tiny village of just 230 inhabitants – on the northern shores of Lake Mývatn.

Be sure to bring your walking boots as the terrain is raw and rugged throughout the region, which is full of well-trodden hiking paths, winding through otherworldly landscapes that are largely uninhabited. On your travels, expect to pass through areas bubbling with geothermal activity, admire vast, rust-coloured landscapes, and marvel at strange, twisting volcanic rock formations aplenty. This is a dream destination for intrepid adventurers, but there are plenty of places to relax, too, such as the Mývatn Nature Baths – a mineral-rich, geothermally heated lagoon where travellers go to soak in steaming, milky blue waters.

In summer, the weather in Mývatn is usually pleasantly mild with days drifting on forever thanks to 24/7 daylight. Thrill-seekers often prefer visiting in the winter, however, when snowfall creates the perfect conditions for a variety of epic outdoor activities such as snowmobiling, snowshoeing and husky sledding. Whatever time of year you choose to visit, endless possibilities await in this wild, remote and truly awe-inspiring part of Iceland.

 

Explore our map of Myvatn

Your Myvatn questions, answered

It takes around three hours and 20 minutes to fly directly from London Gatwick to Akureyri. From there, it’s just over an hour’s drive to Lake Mývatn. It is possible to take the bus, but the quickest and easiest way to get there is by hiring a car or arranging a private transfer.
 
Mývatn is known as an amazing place to see the Northern Lights thanks to minimal light pollution and its northerly latitude. However, your chances of seeing them will increase if you visit between October and March, as nights will be longer and darker. Clear (or partially clear) skies are needed to see the aurora borealis, so the more nights you stay, the better your chances of getting lucky with the weather conditions.
 
Mývatn’s full of natural wonders that’ll have you constantly reaching for your camera. Not only is there the lake, but hiking trails, geothermal areas, towering lava formations, and lots more to discover – not to mention a handful of unmissable tourist attractions such as the Mývatn Nature Baths. We’d recommend staying for at least two nights, especially if you’re hoping to see the Northern Lights as well. You certainly wouldn’t regret staying longer, either.
 
 
Mývatn’s location in the far north of Iceland means it tends to be slightly colder here than Reykjavík and other areas in the south. The mildest  months tend to be July, August, and June with temperatures usually around 10-15 °C. The coldest month tends to be December with highs of -3 °C and lows of -9 °C. As long as you pack suitably, though, you’ll have a fantastic time no matter which time of year you choose to visit – and of course, winter in Iceland brings its very own charm.
 
Lake Mývatn is one of the five stops on the famous Diamond Circle – a 250-kilometre circuit that also passes between Godafoss waterfall, Húsavík village, Ásbyrgi Canyon, and Dettifoss waterfall. Most Diamond Circle tours begin in Akureyri, around an hour’s drive away, but shorter day trips do exist if you prefer to use Mývatn as the starting point. For example, tours by 4x4 jeep from Mývatn are very popular and a great way to see hot spots such as the Viti Explosion Crater, Drekagil Gully, and the Herðubreiðarlindir Springs. For something a bit different, why not visit Mývatn’s dog sled kennels to meet the intelligent and playful Siberian Huskies? It’s a must for any animal lover.
 
There are a handful of restaurants in and around the Mývatn region. The quality is generally high, and many have a great respect for using ingredients sourced from local suppliers. By the lake, you’ll find Daddi’s Pizza – a restaurant renowned for its pizza creations with a distinctly Icelandic twist. For meat lovers, there is Dalakofinn, whose mouth-watering burgers are only made with beef from a farm just three kilometres away. And to satisfy your sweet tooth, head to Skútaís, a small ice-cream parlour that’s a two-minute walk from the Lake Mývatn Visitor Centre.
 

Hotels in Myvatn