Reykjanes, Iceland's New Geopark? Skip to content

Reykjanes, Iceland’s New Geopark?

Municipalities in the Suðurnes region on Reykjanes peninsula in Southwest Iceland are working towards having Reykjanes recognized as an international geopark, which is a quality certification for areas where notable and unique geological remains can be found.


A lava field on Reykjanes. Photo by Páll Stefánsson.

The certification would increase the flow of tourists to Reykjanes, the municipalities reason, reports. Local tourism associations, HS Energy, the Blue Lagoon and Keilir – Atlantic Center of Excellence are also involved in the project.

Project manager of Reykjanes Geopark Eggert Sólberg said Reykjanes is the perfect candidate. “It is unique because this is where the oceanic ridge comes ashore and there is a diverse range of volcanoes.”

Eggert said the first step towards the recognition of Reykjanes Geopark is to apply for admission to the European Geoparks and obtain international certification from UNESCO.

There are currently 84 internationally recognized geoparks in the world, of which 50 are located in Europe. Iceland already boasts one geopark, Katla Geopark in South Iceland.

The world’s first geoparks were established towards the end of the last century. Geoparks not only promote geology but also the culture, handiwork and cuisine of each respective area.


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