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The highland reserve received its protected status in 1979. The aim of the protection is to preserve unique areas so that future generations have the opportunity to enjoy them in the same way as we do. The nature reserve is 446 square kilometers in size and is all within an area over 500 m above sea level. The area is mountainous and shaped by volcanic activity and geothermal heat. The color palette is broad, mostly due to rhyolite and obsidian in the mountains. Lava fields, rivers and lakes are also prominent in the landscape.

For more information, please see Fjallabak Nature Reserve (

Protected Areas in Iceland

A deep blue lake in a crater in a crater in snowy season

Lake Mývatn and Laxa Nature Conservation Area

The ecosystem of Lake Mývatn' is truly unique. The name of the lake derives from the myriad of midges in the area.
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A spiky glacier

Vatnajökull National Park

The National Park is characterised by diversity on all fronts, be it landscape, biosphere, cultural remains or service levels.
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Volcanic rocky terrain

Surtsey Nature Reserve

Surtsey was formed in a volcanic eruption first detected on the surface of the ocean on November 14th 1963. The eruption most likely started a few days before as a submarine eruption at a depth of approximately 130 meters.
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Rocky terrain and steep-edged mountains in the distance

Hornstrandir Nature Reserve

The nature reserve contains gigantic bird cliffs, unique flora and cultural remnants that serve as monuments to an earlier era when people still lived there.
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