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Lake Mývatn
Lake Mývatn

Lake Mývatn

star-5
85 Reviews
Iceland

The Basics

The country’s fourth largest lake, Mývatn is a popular stop on any North Iceland road trip. Full-day tours of the lake depart from Akureyri and often include highlights like the Hverir Mud Pools, Grjótagjá Rift, and Dimmuborgir Lava Fields—many also visit the impressive Godafoss Waterfall en route. Guided trips along the Diamond Circle usually include the lake, as do most multi-day excursions around the island’s Ring Road.

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Recent reviews from experiences in Akureyri

star-5
Fun and informative excursion
keenan_c, Sep 2021
Lake Myvatn and Godafoss Waterfall Day Tour from Akureyri
We (as a group of three) had enough time to travel to all destinations with an adequate amount of time spent at each location, no one was rushed in any way, and we could experience the natural beauty present. The tour guide was very informative about many aspects not only about each stop, but Iceland in general- whether it came to geology or folklore, he always had something interesting or witty to say. My favourite part had to be the mud pots- it looked (and smelled) like you had just stepped on an alien planet, with the blistered landscape inset with roaring steam columns and bubbling acid pools.
star-5
The top attractions near Akureyri with local guide
Kevin_P, Jun 2021
Lake Myvatn and Godafoss Waterfall Day Tour from Akureyri
Iceland is getting crowded with tourists, mostly Americans, and I am glad I happened upon this tour. Our guide was a local, which isn't always the case since many larger companies are importing guides from places like Spain. I liked this because she grew up on a local farm and had many interesting things to say along the way about growing up in Iceland and how things have changed in recent decades. We toured most of the Diamond Circle, we had plenty of time on our stops and flexibility. We had 5 people, three groups (I was traveling alone), so it was a perfect size of group. The van was very comfortable, a high ceiling Ford with plenty of seating. It was a full day, with two waterfall, a hot spring stop which is much better IMHO than the Blue Lagoon, along with lava fields, a wonderful bargain soup lunch along the way (the best deal I have had in Iceland and I've been here almost 3 weeks). The north is a wonderful place to visit and I wish I had made more time to explore but if you want to see a lot in a short time but not feel like you are being rushed from place to place, I recommend this tour.
star-5
Awe inspiring experience!
Philippa, Mar 2020
Lake Myvatn, Dettifoss and Goddafoss Waterfalls Day Tour from Akureyri
Fantastic experience and well organised trip by a highly reputable company. Our guide, Armaan, made our experience unforgettable. It was the middle of winter, we were the only people on the tour & the road conditions were bad so we couldn’t reach Dettifoss or Selfoss. However, Armaan went out of his way to make up for it and made sure we saw as much as we could. If you want local knowledge, fantastic humour & an awe inspiring experience, then we would highly recommend this trip.

Things to Know Before You Go

  • In summer, take insect repellent and a head net to protect yourself from midges.

  • Protect the local flora and fauna by sticking to established pathways and trails.

  • The town of Reykjahlíð on the lake has a gas station, bank, supermarket, and public swimming pool.

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How to Get There

Lake Mývatn is around 300 miles (480 kilometers) from Reykjavík along the Ring Road, which typically stays open year-round—the drive takes between six and seven hours, depending on the weather. From Akureyri, the drive along Route 1 takes just over an hour. Alternatively, you can get there on bus 56.

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Trip ideas


When to Get There

Each season on Mývatn offers a completely different set of adventures. Go in summer to see birds and vibrant colors—or in winter to spot the northern lights and marvel at shades of white and blue as parts of the lake freeze over.

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Bird-Watching at Lake Mývatn

Home to approximately 115 species of birds (including about 28 species of ducks), Mývatn is one of the world’s top pilgrimage sites for bird lovers. On the shores of the lake, Sigurgeir’s Bird Museum showcases hundreds of stuffed specimens, along with an aviary and an extensive collection of eggs.

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