North Iceland

DIMMUBORGIR LAVA FIELD ("Black Fortress"): Mance Rayder camp

Dimmuborgir is a vast area of lava fields in the north of the country. Located 5 and a half hours away from Reykjavik, the capital, by car.

Dimmuborgir is situated near the volcanic Lake Myvatn and its name means “black fortress” in Icelandic. It can be easily access by car and there are several routes on foot to visit this surprising landscape.

This is an area known for its dark lava formations. Hundreds of pillars and caves were created 2000 years ago when the island’s volcanic activity in this field stopped and the lava solidified.

In the Islandic folklore, this region is thought to connect The Earth with Hell. And in the Game of Thrones universe it is a place just as barbaric. This was the spot where Mance Rayder (the King-Beyond-the-Wall) set his camp in season three.

Filming in these lands was extremely complicated due to the low temperatures which came to nearly -11ºC. In order to be able to see the Dimmuborgir landscape covered in snow as it appears on the show, it is best if you visit Iceland in the winter season. Goes without saying, but come prepared to the extreme temperatures “beyond the Wall”.

GRJÓTAGJÁ CAVE: Ygritte and Jon Snow cave

Grjótagjá Cave is another location near Myvatn Lake. One of the most iconic scene of the series took place inside this volcanic cave. Yes, this is THE cave of Ygritte and Jon.

As you may remember from the scene, the cave features geothermal hot spring in its depths. However, since the 70’s and 80’s it is forbidden to take a dip in them since the temperature of the water became too hot to be safe. And although nowadays the temperature has dropped the ban has not been lifted.

In fact, the specific part of the scene in which Ygritte and Jon actually bathe together is filmed in another location. Not even them could ignore the rules!

It is important to keep in mind when visiting Grjótagjá that it is located inside private property and the access can be closed. In any case, it exists a designated place from where the entrance to the cave can be seen.

HVERIR VENTS: Sam and the blizzard.

Hverir is one of the most active geothermal points in Iceland. A bright shade of blue coming from its pools as well as its characteristic steamy vents is what you see when you visit this spot on the island. It is beautiful but we have to warn you about the strong sulfur odor.

Hverir is located in the east of Myvtan Lake, and the steam coming from its numerous vents was used in the show to create the illusion of a snow storm. The “blizzard” Sam Tarly struggles to get through in season three.

Carefully and minding the signs, you can walk into this land and see for yourself how it is to be under a blinding storm that, actually, comes from underground. 

If you want to know more details about tours in the north region of Iceland to discover these filming locations and other touristic points go to our ‘Activities’ section and we tell you all there is to know!