Dancing along the edge of the Arctic Circle, North Iceland probably sounds pretty cold! Surprisingly, this area experiences some of the mildest temperatures in the country and offers a huge spectrum of scenery to explore, from the soft and gentle to the awesomely spectacular. Rich in history and wildlife, with amazing volcanic landscapes, unusual museums, a wealth of antique farms, fjords and saga sites, it’s no wonder the region was recently named a top European destination by Lonely Planet!
Attractions in North Iceland
North Iceland is home to the unexpectedly lush Jokulsargljufur area, the northern section of Vatnajokull National Park including Dettifoss, Europe’s most powerful waterfall.
On Skjalfandi Bay, Husavik has established itself as Europe’s main whale watching mecca with the superb harbor-side Whale Museum and sightings of rare species like the blue whale. The Skagafjordur district, with its green valleys and ancient mountain ranges, is the traditional heart of horse breeding in Iceland and boasts many historical sites from the classic Sagas.
One of the most known places in north Iceland is Lake Myvatn and its surrounding areas, with attractions like Dimmuborgir, Godafoss (‘The waterfall of the gods’), Asbyrgi canyon and the magnificent sea cliff Hvitserkur, to name a few.
Things to do in north Iceland
The Midnight Sun is an extraordinary spectacle in these northern latitudes and during Northern Lights season, the magnificent vistas are made even more theatrical by the glow of Aurora Borealis.
Seasonal delights include golf under the Midnight Sun at the world’s northernmost 18-hole course in Akureyri, taking to the slopes at one of eight skiing areas, snowmobiling, horse trekking, super-jeep excursions, white-water rafting and hiking on along the rugged coastline.
In June 2017, the first beer spa in Iceland was opened in the village of Dalvik, where people can cleanse their skin by lying in a tub filled with beer, water, hops and yeast.
And of course, Akureyri, ‘the capital of the north’, has everything to offer for the more social-minded people, including shopping, a variety of cafés and restaurants, cultural events and art exhibitions, etc.
For more detailed information about attractions, villages and activities in north Iceland be sure to go through our destination guide.