Jökulsárlón ( [listen] (help·info), literally "glacial river lagoon") is a large glacial lake in southeast Iceland, on the borders of Vatnajökull National Park. Situated at the head of Breiðamerkurjökull, it developed into a lake after the glacier started receding from the edge of the Atlantic Ocean. The lake has grown since then at varying rates because of melting of the Icelandic glaciers. The lake now stands 1.5 kilometres (0.93 mi) away from the ocean's edge and covers an area of about 18 km2 (6.9 sq mi). It recently became the deepest lake in Iceland at over 248 metres (814 ft) depth as glacial retreat extended its boundaries. The size of the lake has increased fourfold since the 1970s. It is considered as one of the natural wonders of Iceland.

One can see the lake from along Route 1 between Höfn and Skaftafell. It presents a picturesque parade termed as “A ghostly procession of luminous blue ice-bergs through the 17 km2 (6.6 sq mi) (18 km2 (6.9 sq mi) as reported in other sources) Jokulsarlon Lagoon”.

Jökulsárlón has been a setting for four Hollywood movies -- A View to a Kill, Die Another Day, Tomb Raider and Batman Begins -- in addition to the reality-TV series Amazing Race. In 1991 Iceland issued a postage stamp, with a face value of 26 kronur, depicting Jökulsárlón.

The tongue of the Breiðamerkurjökull glacier is a major attraction for tourists. Tour operators conduct snowmobile and jeep tours to visit the glacier along the winding iceberg-studded Jökulsárlón. The base station for visits to the area is at Joklasel, which is approached from Hofn.


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