Skútustađagígar Pseudo Craters

Skútustađagígar Pseudo Craters
Skútustađagígar pseudo craters, located in the Lake Mývatn area close to the lakeshore. The spectacular craters are a popular site for birdwatchers, whereas the wildlife is very well protected since the craters are a protected natural wetlands conservation area.


Pseudo craters look like real volcanic craters but are not. The craters were formed about 2300 years ago by gas explosions when lava flowed over the swampy wetlands in the lake area. Such steam explosion occur when hot lava quickly cools when it comes in contact with cold water and the water beneath the lava surface instantly turns into steam under a high pressure and gases break through the lava surface. This causes the lava to pulverize to make a sand like material that forms so called Pseudo craters. Although Pseudo craters are rather rare, such craters are found in several other places in Iceland, for example is Laxárdalur Valley, in Álftaver in south Iceland and at Rauđhólar in the outskirts of Reykjavik City.


There are two marked hiking routes in the crater area, one of which is 1,5 kilometers and the other one 3 kilometers well worth the short hike. The best time to see the crates is in summer and fall. In spring the area is abundant in birdlife, especially many species of ducks that nest in the area surrounding Lake Mývatn.


Skútustađagígar Pseudo Craters are situated by the main highway that encircles the lake but during winter accessibility of the craters may be limited due to snow on the ground. Skútustađagígar are just one of many interesting places to visit around the Lake Mývatn are and are well worth a visit.

Services and Nearby Attractions

There are hotels and guesthouses located close to Skútustađagígar and many recreational activities are available nearby. The Mývatn Nature Baths, where visitors can bathe in mineral rich geothermal waters from the ground all year round, are only a few minutes drive from Skútustađir. GPS coordinates of Skútustađagígar are: N65° 36' 29.855" W16° 59' 37.110" Many guided bus tour packages and self drive tours, including a visit to Skútustađagígar Craters can be found at

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