Iceland

Description

Iceland - by Henk

This rugged North Atlantic island offers great hiking through surprising nature. Vast lava fields spread out next to massive glaciers. Hot streams emerge from boiling springs. Giant waterfalls come roaring down and of course the famous geysers blow hot steam high into the air at regular intervals. For any hiker who loves wide expanses of clear empty sky, phenomenal views and remoteness. Everything in this country is bigger, larger, more colourful, and wetter. Iceland is paradise.

The volcanic most active part of the island is a band running from the south west to the north east.

There are numerous hiking trails in different parts of Iceland, but not all are clearly waymarked. Given frequent fog and the remoteness of Icelandic nature in general, it is necessary that you always know how to use map and compass. Don’t believe people who argue that a compass will be impaired by the local magnetism: not true. A GPS receiver, and plenty of spare batteries, comes in handy too. The most popular routes pass mountain huts at a day’s hike distance. Make reservations in advance. Always bring your own sleeping bag and food.

The most popular routes are:

  • Laugavegur, between active volcanos, glaciers and colourful mountains;
  • Kjalvegur, a trading route in the remote interior.

Also think of these good hiking area’s

  • Þingvellir, the historic lake and pleasant surroundings;
  • Mývatn, a beloved lake in the north;
  • The eastern fjords;
  • The giant glacier Vatnajökull, with many trails around it;
  • The very very lonely north coast;
  • Jökulsá á Fjöllum river, with its immense waterfalls and spectacular canyons;
  • Hornstrandir, the fjord like north western peninsula.

Although Iceland is not as cold a place as it sounds, hikers must be prepared for frequent and sudden weather changes and fog during all seasons. Also you may have to wade across rivers, and this can be dangerous. The summer months (mid June to mid September) are best for hiking. Prepare well.

Opinions

Rate 8.0 | 3 votes | No 6. in Europe
  • Hiking Is Good July 2017
  • Rate 8
  • Positive Perfect fo hiking. One of the last pieces on wilderness in the "Western World"
  • Negative There aren't many forests; it could get very windy; very expensive country
  • pc22 November 2012
  • Rate 8
More opinions…

Trails

Regions

Books

The Book Depository
United Kingdom
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
2018
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2014
  • Natuurgids - Reisgids Iceland - IJsland | Crossbill Guides
  • IJsland is beroemd om zijn indrukwekkende landschappen, unieke geologie en rijk vogelleven. Er zijn weinig plekken ter wereld waar het vulkanisme zo'n veelvoud landschappen heeft voortgebracht, en waar zulke enorme aantallen vogels gemakkelijk te zien en te fotograferen zijn Deze nieuwe Crossbill Guide beschrijft de IJslandse natuur in al zijn... Read more
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2017
  • Wandelgids Island - IJsland | Conrad Stein Verlag
  • Handzaam boekje met routebeschrijvingen inclusief een heleboel praktische informatie. De beschrijving is uitstekend, maar kaarten zijn beperkt en schetsmatig aanwezig. Duits Island, die „letzte Wildnis Europas“; gilt als Eldorado für Naturliebhaber und begeistert mit einem dichten Netz hervorragend markierter Wege. Dieses Buch beschreibt die 22... Read more
Bol.com
Netherlands
  • 111 Places in Iceland That You Shouldn't Miss
  • Iceland's specialties are its contrasts. The capital of Reykjavik offers urban life with an unbelievable cultural variety, yet you can find yourself in total isolation as soon as you travel into the barren lava landscapes of the island. Fire and ice have not only shaped the unmistakable face of Iceland, they have also produced a special kind of... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • Bol.com, Belgium
» Click to open
Bol.com
Belgium
  • 111 Places in Iceland That You Shouldn't Miss
  • Iceland's specialties are its contrasts. The capital of Reykjavik offers urban life with an unbelievable cultural variety, yet you can find yourself in total isolation as soon as you travel into the barren lava landscapes of the island. Fire and ice have not only shaped the unmistakable face of Iceland, they have also produced a special kind of... Read more
» Click to close
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2018
  • Reisgids Living Abroad Reykjavik | Moon Travel Guides
  • Uitstekende Amerikaanse reisgids van uitgever Moon. De gids is vergelijkbaar met Lonely Planet en Rough guide en is voor de backpacker - zelfstandige reiziger geschreven; toch is deze door de grote mate van details en achtergronden geschikt voor alle reizigers! De gids onderscheidt zich door gedegen en uitgebreide achtergrondinformatie over... Read more
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2016
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2015
  • Reisgids Focus Reykjavík | Footprint
  • Handig gidsje op zakformaat van Reykjavík. Footprint focus is een engelstalige praktische reisgids voor alle leeftijden, boordevol informatie over accommodatie van middenklasse tot luxe en plaatsbeschrijvingen. Kenmerk: brede culturele en achtergrondinformatie, bondig geschreven. The northernmost capital city in the world, Reykjavík is also one... Read more
Bol.com
Netherlands
2017
  • Insight Guides Iceland
  • To say that Iceland is a country bristling with natural beauty is something of an understatement. Volcanoes, lagoons, glaciers, waterfalls, black-sand beaches and geysers densely populate its landscape. The lively capital city of Reykjavik also has a lot to offer visitors, from the stunning Blue Lagoon to its rich cultural heritage. Be inspired... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • Bol.com, Belgium
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
» Click to open
Bol.com
Belgium
2017
  • Insight Guides Iceland
  • To say that Iceland is a country bristling with natural beauty is something of an understatement. Volcanoes, lagoons, glaciers, waterfalls, black-sand beaches and geysers densely populate its landscape. The lively capital city of Reykjavik also has a lot to offer visitors, from the stunning Blue Lagoon to its rich cultural heritage. Be inspired... Read more
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2017
» Click to close
Bol.com
Netherlands
  • Eldhestar
  • A mesmerizing photo medley surrounding Eldhestar, one of the largest and most popular horse trekking operations in Iceland. The pictures are fun, colorful, and action oriented. Read more
  • Also available from:
  • Bol.com, Belgium
» Click to open
Bol.com
Belgium
  • Eldhestar
  • A mesmerizing photo medley surrounding Eldhestar, one of the largest and most popular horse trekking operations in Iceland. The pictures are fun, colorful, and action oriented. Read more
» Click to close
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2018
  • Reisgids Trotter IJsland | Lannoo
  • Een unieke bestemming voor wie op zoek is naar rust en ruimte. IJsland is het dunstbevolkte land van Europa en geeft je het 'alleen-op-de-wereld'-gevoel. Vulkanen, geisers en thermale bronnen getuigen van de rijke geologische geschiedenis van het land. De hoofdstad Reykjavik doet modern en verrassend aan, met tal van bezienswaardigheden en een... Read more
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Maps

Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Vatnsdalur
  • Vatnsdalur, map no. 10, in the topographic survey of Iceland at 1:100,000 published by Mál og menning, with excellent, vivid presentation of the terrain, footpaths and bridleways, campsites, etc. The maps have contours at 20m intervals, enhanced by bold relief shading plus colouring and/or graphics to show glaciers, lava fields, sands and... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Western Fjords
  • The north-western tip of Iceland in a series of detailed hiking and recreational topographic maps from Mál og menning – the country’s leading cartographic publishers, with beautiful drawings of local birds and tourist information. On one side the whole area is covered by a road map at 1:200,000, on the reverse its south-western part is shown in... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Veiðivötn
  • Veiðivötn, map no. 15, in the topographic survey of Iceland at 1:100,000 published by Mál og menning, with excellent, vivid presentation of the terrain, footpaths and bridleways, campsites, etc. The maps have contours at 20m intervals, enhanced by bold relief shading plus colouring and/or graphics to show glaciers, lava fields, sands and... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Iceland South-West: Reykjavik – Eyjafjallajökull
  • South Western Iceland at 1:200,000 on a detailed map from Mál og Menning with exceptionally vivid presentation of the country’s topography and landscape, hard surface or gravel roads and numerous country tracks, superb drawings of local birds and flowers, etc. Coverage includes Reykjavik, the Reykjanes Peninsula, Þingvellir, Hekla and... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Hornafjörður
  • Hornafjörður, map no. 25, in the topographic survey of Iceland at 1:100,000 published by Mál og menning, with excellent, vivid presentation of the terrain, footpaths and bridleways, campsites, etc. The maps have contours at 20m intervals, enhanced by bold relief shading plus colouring and/or graphics to show glaciers, lava fields, sands and... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Vestmannaeyjar
  • Vestmannaeyjar, map no. 13, in the topographic survey of Iceland at 1:100,000 published by Mál og menning, with excellent, vivid presentation of the terrain, footpaths and bridleways, campsites, etc. The maps have contours at 20m intervals, enhanced by bold relief shading plus colouring and/or graphics to show glaciers, lava fields, sands and... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Mýrar
  • Mýrar, map no. 2, in the topographic survey of Iceland at 1:100,000 published by Mál og menning, with excellent, vivid presentation of the terrain, footpaths and bridleways, campsites, etc. The maps have contours at 20m intervals, enhanced by bold relief shading plus colouring and/or graphics to show glaciers, lava fields, sands and mudflats,... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Nýjabæjarfjall
  • Nýjabæjarfjall, map no. 17, in the topographic survey of Iceland at 1:100,000 published by Mál og menning, with excellent, vivid presentation of the terrain, footpaths and bridleways, campsites, etc. The maps have contours at 20m intervals, enhanced by bold relief shading plus colouring and/or graphics to show glaciers, lava fields, sands and... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Iceland East: Vatnajökull - Egilsstaðir
  • Eastern Iceland at 1:200,000 on a detailed map from Mál og Menning with exceptionally vivid presentation of the country’s topography and landscape, hard surface or gravel roads and numerous country tracks, superb drawings of local birds and flowers, etc. Coverage extends from the central part of the Vatnajökull Glacier with Grimsfjall in the... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Snæfell
  • Snæfell, map no. 26, in the topographic survey of Iceland at 1:100,000 published by Mál og menning, with excellent, vivid presentation of the terrain, footpaths and bridleways, campsites, etc. The maps have contours at 20m intervals, enhanced by bold relief shading plus colouring and/or graphics to show glaciers, lava fields, sands and... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Kelduhverfi
  • Kelduhverfi, map no. 20, in the topographic survey of Iceland at 1:100,000 published by Mál og menning, with excellent, vivid presentation of the terrain, footpaths and bridleways, campsites, etc. The maps have contours at 20m intervals, enhanced by bold relief shading plus colouring and/or graphics to show glaciers, lava fields, sands and... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Snæfellsjökull
  • Snæfellsjökull, map no. 3, in the topographic survey of Iceland at 1:100,000 published by Mál og menning, with excellent, vivid presentation of the terrain, footpaths and bridleways, campsites, etc. The maps have contours at 20m intervals, enhanced by bold relief shading plus colouring and/or graphics to show glaciers, lava fields, sands and... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Eyjafjörður
  • Eyjafjörður, map no. 18, in the topographic survey of Iceland at 1:100,000 published by Mál og menning, with excellent, vivid presentation of the terrain, footpaths and bridleways, campsites, etc. The maps have contours at 20m intervals, enhanced by bold relief shading plus colouring and/or graphics to show glaciers, lava fields, sands and... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Iceland South East: Southern Vatnajökull
  • South-Eastern Iceland at 1:200,000 on a detailed map from Mál og Menning with exceptionally vivid presentation of the country’s topography and landscape, hard surface or gravel roads and numerous country tracks, superb drawings of local birds and flowers, etc. Coverage extends southwards from the central part of the Vatnajökull Glacier with... Read more
More maps…

Walking holidays

Macs Adventure
United Kingdom
  • Highlights of Cornwall's North Coast
  • Self guided walking tour on the north coast of Cornwall. A self-guided walking tour experiencing the highlights of Cornwall’s north coast from St Ives to Padstow & Tintagel. Enjoy overnight stays in the quaint fishing towns and villages of St Ives, Padstow and Tintagel and follow trails through designated Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty.... Read more
Macs Adventure
United Kingdom
  • Devon North Coast & Exmoor Highlights
  • Self guided walking tour on the north coast of Devon & Exmoor. A self-guided walking tour experiencing the highlights of Devon’s north coast, including Exmoor National Park. A 3-centre stay in Westward Ho!, Ilfracombe and Lynmouth, where Exmoor meets the sea. These unspoilt pastoral landscapes are a reminder of days gone by when life was a... Read more
Macs Adventure
United Kingdom
  • Laugavegur Highland Walking Trail (Group)
  • A small group guided highland walk along Iceland's famous Laugavegur Trail. Follow in the footsteps of enthusiastic walker and TV presenter Julia Bradbury, as seen on the BBC’s ‘Julia Bradbury’s Icelandic Walk’. On the Laugavegur Trail you will encounter volcanoes, lava fields, hot springs, mud pools, waterfalls, mountain lakes, canyons and... Read more
Snp Wandelreizen
Netherlands
  • IJsland - Ultima Thule
  • Tijdens deze kennismakingsreis verkennen we het zuiden van IJsland. We maken dagwandelingen in het Hengillgebergte waar stoombronnen en dampende riviertjes het landschap versieren en op het schiereiland Reykjanes wandelen we over dikke mospakketten en grillige lavavelden. In Skaftafell wandelen we naar de Svartifoss en de Skaftafellsjökull en... Read more
Snp Wandelreizen
Netherlands
  • IJsland - Rondreis Zuid-IJsland
  • Tijdens deze afwisselende rondreis in het zuiden van IJsland maak je kennis met de vele verschillende landschappen aan de rand van de hoogvlakte en de enorme ijskappen. Natuurlijk bezoek je de ‘must seen’ Geysir, Gullfoss, Skogarfoss en de zwarte stranden van Reynisfjara, maar gelukkig zijn er ook nog plaatsen waar het minder druk is. Wat te... Read more
Snp Wandelreizen
Netherlands
  • IJsland - Kerlingarfjöll
  • Sneeuwwandelen in het gebergte van Kerlingarfjöll, gelegen op de Kjölur hoogvlakte, betekent op sneeuwschoenen langs pruttelende modderpoelen en sissende stoompluimen, over dichtgesneeuwde vulkaanhellingen en ijzige vlaktes, door besneeuwde dalen en over door de wind kaal geblazen bergruggen. Spectaculaire tocht naar het binnenland en verblijf... Read more
Snp Wandelreizen
Netherlands
  • IJsland - Landmannalaugar & Thorsmörk
  • Wandelreis vanuit berghutten door het sprookjesachtige Landmannalaugar en het groene Thorsmörk. Loop over goed gemarkeerde wandelpaden langs glimmende obsidiaanvelden, groenbemoste lavavelden, pruttelende zwavelpoeltjes en kolkende smeltwaterriviertjes. Wandel naar de top van de Valahnúkur en de Tröllakirkja in het door de ijskap van de... Read more
Snp Wandelreizen
Netherlands
  • IJsland - Landmannalaugar, Thorsmörk & Myvatn
  • Wandelvakantie door twee prachtige IJslandse wandelgebieden, gevolgd door een indrukwekkende rondreis. Loop in Landmannalaugar langs lavavelden, zwavelpoeltjes en kolkende smeltwaterriviertjes. Wandel in Thorsmörk naar de top van de Valahnúkur en de Tröllakirkja. Rijd met uw huurauto via de zuidkust naar Myvatn en verken vanuit het Muggenmeer... Read more
Snp Wandelreizen
Netherlands
  • IJsland - Laugavegur
  • De Laugavegur is dé meerdaagse rugzaktrektocht op IJsland. Trek door het wonderschone Landmannalaugar met zijn kleurrijke rhyolietheuvels naar het groene Thorsmörk. Loop langs pruttelende zwavelpoeltjes, sissende stoombronnen en gitzwarte obsidiaanvelden. Laat je overweldigen door contrastrijke natuurfenomenen: warmwaterbronnen en sneeuwkappen,... Read more
Snp Wandelreizen
Netherlands
  • IJsland - Laugavegur & Myvatn
  • Spectaculaire rugzaktrektocht in IJsland, gevolgd door een rondreis per huurauto. Trektocht van Landmannalaugar over de Laugavegur naar het bosrijke Thorsmörk. Loop langs pruttelende zwavelpoeltjes, sissende stoombronnen en gitzwarte obsidiaanvelden. Maak vervolgens per huurauto een indrukwekkende rondreis met als hoogtepunten de vulkanen van... Read more
More walking holidays…

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