Hverfjall in northern Iceland is a tephra cone or “tuff ring” volcano. Located to the east of the volcanic Lake Mývatn, the volcanic explosion crater is 1 km wide and roughly 140 meters deep, and is a popular hiking destination. Visitors can easily access many parts of the crater via public hiking trails, where its ridges can reach up to 200 meters in height.

Left - Aerial view of Hverfjall crater. Right - Northern Lights, Mývatn, Iceland
Believed to have been created during a volcano eruption, Hverfjall is almost perfectly symmetrical, apart from a landslide that took place several years ago, and its dark, captivating colours make it a popular tourist attraction and photography spot. The site is protected, so visitors can only use the two approved hiking trails to access the crater, with all other areas restricted.

Hverfjall volcano crater is almost perfectly symmetrical

For the Iceland Volcano Lookout Point architecture competition, participants are tasked with designing an observation point positioned on the southern edge of the crater. Participants will need to consider the functional properties of this observation point and produce an impressive aesthetic that’s in keeping with the stunning Icelandic surroundings. The platform will need to fit a 10x10 m base, offering a view from the top overlooking Lake Mývatn and the Dimmuborgir Lava fields.

Left - Dimmuborgir lava fields near Mývatn in the North of Iceland. Right - Remote Lake Mývatn near Mývatn in Northern Iceland

Dimmuborgir rock formations
The Icelandic landscape is full of bold contrasts, intriguing shapes, and deep dark colours, and so participants are free to take inspiration from a truly unique environment to create a structure that matches the visual appeal of a 1 km-wide crater formed by a volcanic explosion.

Download full competition brief for more information!

Competition is open to all. No professional qualification is required. Design proposals can be developed individually or by teams (4 team members maximum). Correspondence with organizers must be conducted in English; All information submitted by participants must be in English.

Iceland Volcano 
Lookout Point