Iceland is a hiker’s paradise that you should visit if you’re a tried and true hiker. The country’s hiking trails provide something beautiful and unique to offer. Not to mention that hiking is a popular pastime in Iceland during the summer, so you can enjoy the company of others if you go during this time. That said, this list of 10 amazing hikes to take in Iceland can also help you identify hiking trails that are worth visiting.
10 Amazing Hikes to Take in Iceland
1. Mount Esja Hiking Trail
If you plan on going on a hike in Iceland, the first place you should stop by is the most popular hiking trail: the Mount Esja Trail.
You can easily access the hiking trail up Mount Esja through the nation’s capital, Reykjavik. It looms over the city at a height of about 914 meters or almost 3,000 feet above sea level.
When hiking up the Mount Esja hiking trail, it would benefit you a lot to have sturdy hiking poles and reliable hiking shoes. Once you find yourself atop the mountain, you can enjoy a stunning view of Reykjavik, the Faxafloi Bay, and more.
2. Laugavegur Trail
Speaking of popular hiking trails in Iceland, one path that you definitely wouldn’t want to miss would be the Laugavegur Trail.
People often list the Laugavegur Trail as one of the best hiking trails in the world. Even National Geographic considers it one of the world’s best hikes. With such a glowing recommendation, you should give this a go.
The Laugavegur Trail spans to about 55 km or around 34 miles. It can take you between two to four days to accomplish this hike. You can enjoy hiking this trail from June to September.
Do note that you have to book the huts in this hiking trail way in advance. Since there are only a few months in the year when you can hike this trail, the huts have a lot of people waiting in line.
3. Hverfjall Crater Rim Trail
Ever wanted to hike around the rim of a volcano’s crater? Never? Well, here’s your chance to try it anyway!
The Hverfjall Crater Rim trail is one for the books. It’s even quite accessible for beginner hikers since the trail itself isn’t too challenging. You can finish this hike in an hour, give or take.
If you’re looking for a quick and easy hike that’s still stunning, then the Hverfjall Crater Rim trail is one to visit.
4. Hornstrandir Nature Reserve
The Hornstrandir Nature Reserve is in the Westfjords. It’s a very isolated place with few cottages or farmhouses available. Most of the time, though, it’s entirely uninhabited.
If you want to be able to get to Hornstrandir, you need to get here by foot through the South or by boat as no roads lead to this nature reserve.
Since Hornstrandir is isolated, you need to plan your trip carefully. One thing that you should take note of would be the ever-changing weather conditions there.
The weather changes can often lead to canceled or rescheduled ferries. This explains why people often recommend hiking here during the summer.
Despite all of these challenges, hiking this nature reserve will make you feel like you’re in another world. If you’ve got the hiking experience, you should consider hiking out in this reserve and be one with the Icelandic wilderness.
5. Látrabjarg Bird Cliffs
Another hiking location that you can find in the Westfjords of Iceland would be the Látrabjarg Bird Cliffs.
When you find yourself in the Látrabjarg Bird Cliffs, you should make sure to do some bird watching during your hike. There are plenty of birds that you can find around the cliffs ‒ from puffins to razorbills and many more.
So grab a camera and go bird watching around these parts.
6. Hveragerdi Hot Spring River Trail
There are plenty of hot springs around Iceland. You can enjoy both hiking and bathing in the hot springs while enjoying the Icelandic landscape by going through the Hveragerdi Hot Spring River Trail.
This trail is quite easy and it goes along a hot spring river. Just make sure to read the signs, as some of the water in the river reach temperatures of above 80 degrees Celsius or 176 degrees Fahrenheit.
7. Fimmvorduhals Pass
The Fimmvorduhals Pass is a popular hiking trail that spans about 35 km or around 15 miles.
There are a variety of sights to see along this pass. You can see glaciers, lava fields, mountains, and even waterfalls. You can easily accomplish this hike in one day if you want.
However, if you're going to make the most of it, you can do a two-day hike instead.
8. Snaefellsjokull Peninsula
If you can consider yourself an expert hiker, you should make the Snæfellsjökull a part of your next hiking trip.
You need to reevaluate the gear that you’re using, though, since you’re going to be hiking in knee-deep snow when you’re here. Even if you go during the summer, much like any place in Iceland, you need to prepare for the rapid weather changes.
Nonetheless, it will feel like a great accomplishment being able to finish the hike up the glacier.
9. Glymur Waterfall
The hike to get to the Glymur Waterfall, Iceland’s second-highest waterfall, will let you enjoy scenes of rivers and green terrain.
It’s not an easy hike, but it’s not too difficult either. The walk will take you around three hours to finish, and it spans about seven kilometers or approximately four miles.
Do note that there are water crossings along the hike, so you better have waterproof gear and footwear.
Seljalandsfoss is Iceland’s most photogenic waterfall, so expect a lot of fellow hikers along the way.
The best way to see the waterfall is to hike behind it, but remember to factor in the wind and expect a lot of water splashing your way. And before you try to reach this waterfall, make sure that you have waterproof gear with you.
Over to You
Since Iceland is famous for being the Land of Fire and Ice, you can see how this reflects what the Icelandic landscape truly is.
When hiking in Iceland, you should expect a lot of snow, so prepare the appropriate gear. However, during the summertime, you will have easier access to Iceland’s towering and mountainous trails.
There are plenty more fantastic hiking trails all over Iceland that you can try that aren’t on the list. However, the list of hiking trails in this article won’t lead you astray as it shows you the best of what Iceland offers for hikers.
Rent a car in Iceland to drive from one hiking trail to another.
Given Iceland’s geological contrasts, it’s definitely worth the hike to see the unique sights that only this country can give. So next time you plan on going on an overseas hiking trip, consider hiking these trails in Iceland. Ofcourse Iceland has so much more to offer. Consider a roadtrip in Iceland.
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