A visit to North Iceland promises a captivating blend of natural wonders, cultural richness, and unique experiences. From the raw power of waterfalls to the tranquility of geothermal hot springs, this region offers an immersive adventure that will leave you with lasting memories.
Akureyri church is one of the most recognisable landmarks in town. This Lutheran church was designed by renowned architect Guðjón Samúelsson, and the bas-reliefs on the nave balcony are by sculptor Ásmundur Sveinsson. The church steps are a particular highlight, and walking up the 100+ steps should be on everyone’s checklist of things to do when visiting Akureyri.
One of Akureyri’s most popular attractions, the Akureyri Thermal Pool is a great place to take your family, group, significant other, or yourself. Whether relaxing in the warm water or splashing around with the kids, you’re bound to leave the pool feeling energised and refreshed. The hot tubs and outdoor pools and the thrilling waterslides ensure everyone can find something to their liking. The Forest Lagoon is popular and recent addition to Akureyri, where you can relax in the ultimate hot tub experience with a jaw-dropping view of the nearby scenery!
Akureyri, often referred to as the “Capital of the North,” offers a wide range of activities and attractions that make it a vibrant and charming destination. Here are some of the things you can do in Akureyri, Iceland:
Explore the Akureyri Botanical Garden
Visit one of the most northerly botanical gardens in the world, showcasing a diverse collection of plant species from Iceland and around the globe. The garden’s serene atmosphere and beautiful displays make it a perfect spot for a leisurely stroll.
Discover the Akureyri Art Scene
Akureyri is known for its thriving art community. Explore the numerous art galleries and museums in the town, such as the Akureyri Art Museum, which hosts both contemporary and traditional Icelandic art exhibitions.
Go Whale Watching
Take a whale-watching tour from Akureyri’s harbor and embark on an unforgettable adventure in Eyjafjörður, Iceland’s longest fjord. Spot various species of whales, including humpback whales, white-beaked dolphins, and harbor porpoises.
Enjoy Winter Sports
Akureyri is a popular destination for winter sports enthusiasts. Hit the slopes at the nearby ski resorts, such as Hlíðarfjall, and indulge in skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing amidst stunning snowy landscapes.
The Diamond Circle
A trip around the Diamond Circle in North Iceland is a fantastic adventure that takes you through some of the most extraordinary and diverse natural wonders in the region. Prepare to be amazed by the scenic landscapes, geological formations, and cultural attractions along this iconic route!
Your first major stop on the route is Goðafoss, also known as the “Waterfall of the Gods.” This powerful waterfall cascades over a horseshoe-shaped cliff, creating a mesmerizing spectacle. Feel the mist on your face and admire the beauty of this natural wonder.
Continuing eastward, you’ll reach the stunning Lake Mývatn area, known for its volcanic landscapes and unique biodiversity. Explore the pseudo-craters of Skútustaðir and the mystical lava formations at Dimmuborgir. Don’t miss the Hverir geothermal area, where bubbling mud pots and steaming fumaroles create an otherworldly atmosphere.
Your journey will then take you to Dettifoss, Europe’s most powerful waterfall. Feel the ground tremble as you witness the immense force of the water plunging into the Jökulsárgljúfur canyon. Nearby, you can also visit the picturesque Selfoss waterfall, offering a more serene setting.
Next, explore the horseshoe-shaped Ásbyrgi Canyon, which according to Norse mythology, was formed by the hoofprint of the mythological horse Sleipnir. Hike along the trails, marvel at the towering cliffs, and immerse yourself in the tranquil beauty of the surrounding woodland.
As you head north, make a stop in Húsavík, the whale-watching capital of Iceland. Embark on a boat tour and have the opportunity to spot magnificent creatures like humpback whales, minke whales, and dolphins. The Húsavík Whale Museum is also worth a visit to learn more about these incredible marine mammals.
Húsavík, known as the whale-watching capital of Iceland, offers a range of activities and attractions for visitors. Here are some of the things you can do in Húsavík!
Embark on a thrilling whale-watching tour from Húsavík’s harbor. The waters of Skjálfandi Bay are teeming with marine life, including humpback whales, minke whales, dolphins, and even the occasional sighting of the magnificent blue whale. Experienced guides provide insight into the behavior and biology of these incredible creatures.
Húsavík Whale Museum
Explore the Húsavík Whale Museum, dedicated to the study and conservation of whales. Learn about the history of whaling in Iceland, the different species found in the region, and the ongoing efforts to protect them. The museum features interactive exhibits and informative displays.
Visit the iconic wooden Húsavík Church, located in the heart of the town. The church dates back to 1907 and offers a serene atmosphere for contemplation. It also provides picturesque views of Húsavík and the surrounding landscapes.
GeoSea Geothermal Sea Baths
Relax and rejuvenate at the GeoSea Geothermal Sea Baths. These natural hot springs offer a unique bathing experience with panoramic views of the ocean.
Near Lake Mývatn in North Iceland, there are numerous attractions and activities to enjoy. Here are some of the things you can do in and around the Mývatn area!
Explore the Mývatn Nature Baths
Similar to the Blue Lagoon, the Mývatn Nature Baths offer a serene geothermal spa experience. Soak in the warm, mineral-rich waters while enjoying panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes.
Explore the surreal lava formations of Dimmuborgir, often referred to as the “Dark Fortress.” Wander through the intricate network of lava pillars, arches, and caves, which create an otherworldly atmosphere reminiscent of a fairy tale.
Hverir Geothermal Area
Discover the geothermal wonderland of Hverir, located near Námafjall mountain. Walk among bubbling mud pots, hissing steam vents, and colorful mineral deposits. The area’s stark landscapes give a sense of being on another planet.
Venture into the enchanting Grjótagjá Cave, a natural hot spring nestled within a lava cave. Although bathing is no longer permitted due to fluctuating temperatures, the cave’s mystical appeal, made famous by its appearance in Game of Thrones, is worth exploring.