Photo of the Day
Available Photo Albums
More About PhotoGlobe
Arctis, Antarctis and Oceans
Arctic Ocean
Atlantic Ocean
Bouvet Island
French Southern Territories
Heard and McDonald Islands
Indian Ocean
Jan Mayen
Pacific Ocean
South Georgia and the
South Sandwich Islands

Southern Ocean
Australia and Oceania
Central America and Caribbean
Middle East
North America
South America
South East Asia

Jan Mayen


This desolate, mountainous island was named after a Dutch whaling captain who indisputably discovered it in 1614 (earlier claims are inconclusive). Visited only occasionally by seal hunters and trappers over the following centuries, the island came under Norwegian sovereignty in 1929. The long dormant Haakon VII Toppen/Beerenberg volcano resumed activity in 1970; it is the northernmost active volcano on earth.
Geography Jan Mayen
Northern Europe, island between the Greenland Sea and the Norwegian Sea, northeast of Iceland
Geographic coordinates:
71 00 N, 8 00 W
Map references:
Arctic Region
total: 373 sq km
water: 0 sq km
land: 373 sq km
Area - comparative:
slightly more than twice the size of Washington, DC
Land boundaries:
0 km
124.1 km
Maritime claims - as described in UNCLOS 1982 (see Notes and Definitions):
territorial sea: 4 NM
contiguous zone: 10 NM
continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
exclusive economic zone: 200 NM
arctic maritime with frequent storms and persistent fog
volcanic island, partly covered by glaciers
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Norwegian Sea 0 m
highest point: Haakon VII Toppen/Beerenberg 2,277 m
Natural resources:
Land use:
arable land: 0%
permanent crops: 0%
other: 100% (1998 est.)
Irrigated land:
0 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards:
dominated by the volcano Haakon VII Toppen/Beerenberg; volcanic activity resumed in 1970
Environment - current issues:
Geography - note:
barren volcanic island with some moss and grass
People Jan Mayen
no indigenous inhabitants
note: personnel operate the Long Range Navigation (Loran-C) base and the weather and coastal services radio station (July 2004 est.)
Government Jan Mayen
Country name:
conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Jan Mayen
Dependency status:
territory of Norway; since August 1994, administered from Oslo through the county governor (fylkesmann) of Nordland; however, authority has been delegated to a station commander of the Norwegian Defense Communication Service
Legal system:
the laws of Norway, where applicable, apply
Flag description:
the flag of Norway is used
Economy Jan Mayen
Economy - overview:
Jan Mayen is a volcanic island with no exploitable natural resources. Economic activity is limited to providing services for employees of Norway's radio and meteorological stations on the island.
Communications Jan Mayen
Radio broadcast stations:
AM NA, FM NA, shortwave NA
note: there is one radio and meteorological station (1998)
Internet Service Providers (ISPs):
13 (Jan Mayen and Svalbard) (2000)
Transportation Jan Mayen
Ports and harbors:
none; offshore anchorage only
1 (2003 est.)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2003 est.)
Military Jan Mayen
Military - note:
defense is the responsibility of Norway
Transnational Issues Jan Mayen
Disputes - international: