Iceland is open for travel: Volcanic eruption in Iceland 2024

Extending from the Langjokull glacier to mount Hengill, Thingvallavatn Lake, Iceland is the largest natural lake in the country. The lake Thingvallavatn is located along the North Atlantic Ridge and is one of the most picturesque sights to capture.

Where Is Thingvallavatn Lake?

The Thingvallavatn lake is situated on the Southwestern side of Iceland. Located within the premises of the first national park, Thingvellir, the lake is an important stop for those exploring the Golden Circle. This rift valley lake is spread across 84 kilometers, and the deepest part of the lake measures 114 meters. The Thingvallavatn lake has a lot of geological history to it and is one of the most popular diving spots. As one of the most unique lakes in the world, Thingvallavatn is known to support four separate varieties of arctic char.

Aerial View of Thingvallavatn Lake

Thingvallavatn Lake in Iceland


How to Get to Thingvallavatn Lake

From Reykjavik, the lake is only about 40 minutes away. Thingvellir National Park is located on the northern corner of the lake. So to get there, you need to start by taking Route 1 toward Selfoss from Reykjavik. Once you hit the north, from Mosfellsbær, take on Route 36 to get to the National park. Alternatively, you could also take Road 431, which is pretty and scenic during the summer days.

Ring Road by Mountains

Scenic View of the Ring Road (Route 1) in Iceland

Brief History of Thingvallavatn Lake

The lake is partially situated within the national park, which is the only UNESCO world heritage and cultural site in Iceland. Lake Thingvallavatn's history is related to the location itself. It is a historical reminder of Iceland’s early quests for independence. Until 1798, Thingvellir was the venue of gathering under old parliament governance. The historical meeting place of the Althingi was being used for the assembly since 930.

Scenic View of Thingvellir National Park

Thingvallavatn Lake at Thingvellir National Park a UNESCO World Heritage site in Iceland

Things to Do at Thingvallavatn Lake

If scuba diving and snorkeling have been on your travel bucket list of things to do, lake Thingvallavatn is the place to be. This is one of the most incredible underwater sites in Iceland, and there are several scuba diving tours of Silfra.

Apart from scuba diving, lake Thingvallavatn fishing is another one of the popular activities here. Found to be the home of the ice age brown trout, they are believed to have evolved in isolation since the last ice age. The biomass of the lake is why there is a gigantic proportion of growth of fishes.

Thingvallavatn Lake Shores with Mountains in Background

Thingvallavatn Lake in Iceland

There are full-day fishing tours with sightseeing options that are available to travelers. Make sure to connect with a tour expert to better prepare and explore Thingvallavat lake. For more, read our top 8 things to do in Þingvellir.

Accommodation and Hotels Near Thingvallavatn Lake

There are quite a few options for Lake Thingvallavatn hotels. But one that's worth the top of our mention is especially for those who are excited about the fishing aspect and discover the massive number of trouts and their evolution. We recommend you stay at the Efri Brú Fishing Lodge. The lodge offers a picturesque view of Lake Úlfjlótsvatn and is located only a few minutes from Lake Thingvallavatn. Some of the other hotels near Lake Thingvallavatn are ION Adventure Hotel, Nesjavellir, Borealis Hotel, and Lake Thingvellir Cottages. There are a couple of campsites that are worth mentioning too:


  • Leirar campsite - open all year round.

  • Vatnskot campground - open June to September.

Woman Camping in Car Rooftop Tent

Camping in Iceland in a car rooftop tent

Interesting Places Near Thingvallavatn Lake

While you are there, exploring the gorgeous landscapes and experiencing lake activities, be sure to extend your trip to explore some of these interesting places near the lake as well:

Kerid Volcanic Crater with Lake

Kerid Volcanic Crater and lake, Iceland

Locations near Thingvallavatn Lake