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

Cicerone Press
United Kingdom
2016
  • Walking and Trekking in Iceland
  • This guidebook to walking routes in Iceland offers 49 day walks and 10 multi-stage treks including the classic Laugavegur Trail. The total of 100 days of routes described cater for most abilities, from waymarked walks to challenging glacier crossings. Information on public transport, accommodation, facilities and budget travel tips also included. Read more
  • Also available from:
  • Stanfords, United Kingdom
  • The Book Depository, United Kingdom
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
  • Bol.com, Netherlands
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Stanfords
United Kingdom
2015
  • Iceland, Walking and Trekking - 100 days of walking and multi-day treks
  • Walking and Trekking in Iceland from Cicerone Press with 49 day walks and 10 multi-stage treks in various types of terrain including the country’s geothermal areas, presenting both popular classics like the Laugavegur trail and lesser known routes.The walks are grouped geographically to provide a variety of choices in a given area, which is... Read more
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
2015
  • Walking and Trekking in Iceland
  • This guidebook to walking routes in Iceland offers 49 day walks and 10 multi-stage treks including the classic Laugavegur Trail. The total of 100 days of routes described cater for most abilities, from waymarked walks to challenging glacier crossings. Information on public transport, accommodation, facilities and budget travel tips also included. Read more
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2015
  • Wandelgids Walking and Trekking in Iceland - IJsland | Cicerone
  • Wandelgids met beschrijvingen, kaarten en praktische informatie zoals bussen, overnachten, etc. voor meerdaagse wandelroutes en dagwandeltochten op IJsland. A country of extraordinary beauty, Iceland’s incredible variety of volcanic and glacial landscapes makes it a unique destination for walking and trekking holidays. Its three national parks... Read more
Bol.com
Netherlands
2015
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Stanfords
United Kingdom
2014
  • Iceland
  • The Rother Walking Guide to Iceland leads the reader along 49 selected, safe and reliably-described trails to the natural splendours of Iceland which are only accessible to hikers. In the introductory chapters, as well as in the presentation of the regions, the authors prepare the hiker in a safe and knowledgeable manner for the distinctive... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
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De Zwerver
Netherlands
2014
  • Wandelgids Iceland - IJsland | Rother
  • Rother walking guides are pocket-sized, in full colour and include 50 walks, varying from day-long hikes, mountain and valley walks, some easy some more demanding. Each walk has accompanying mapping and colour photos capture the 'feel' of each of the countries. The selection of walks mostly concentrates on the national parks which provide the... Read more
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Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Strange Shores
  • A missing woman. A missing boy. Detective Erlendur returns - for the last time. A young woman walks into the frozen fjords of Iceland, never to be seen again. But Matthildur leaves in her wake rumours of lies, betrayal and revenge. Decades later, somewhere in the same wilderness, Detective Erlendur is on the hunt. He is looking for Matthildur... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Iceland: Sogur Utgafa 100K Recreational Maps
  • Sogur Utgafa presents this series of recreational maps at 1:100,000, featuring hiking and cycling routes on a topographic base, various types of terrain, recreational facilities, places of interest, etc.Each title of this series carries on one side an enlargement of the chosen area with descriptions of the individual walks/or rides... Read more
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2010
  • Reisgids Huts and Lodges in Iceland - Ijsland | Skrudda
  • This book illustrates in text and images upwards of 140 huts, old and new, that have been built throughout Iceland. The book contains a vast amount of information about the huts, their history and furnishings, in addition to mentioning their owners and supervisors. Description includes a photo of each hut, and their position is indicated by GPS... Read more
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2012
  • Reisgids Off the Beaten Track in Iceland - IJsland | Skrudda
  • Een gids voor de avontuurlijke 4x4 off the road reiziger, die gedetailleerd 40 routes beschrijft. This book provides detailed descriptions of interesting routes in Iceland that are off the beaten track, especially in the highlands. A map is provided for each of the 40 route descriptions, most of them in the south and west of the country, and... Read more
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2017
  • Reisgids Iceland - IJsland | Lonely Planet
  • De perfecte reisgids voor IJsland, zowel de georganiseerde als de zelfstandige reiziger. Naast een algemene inleiding van het land / streek vol met praktische informatie over hoe je er het beste kunt reizen: slapen, eten, vervoer, excursies ... alles kun je er in vinden. Hitting headlines, topping bucket lists, wooing nature lovers and dazzling... Read more
Bol.com
Netherlands
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2016
  • Reisgids Iceland - IJsland | Rough Guides
  • Zeer goede reisgids voor zowel de georganiseerde maar vooral voor de zelfstandige reiziger. Boordevol informatie over reizen, slapen, eten, maar ook musea en cultuur. Voor Europese landen en steden meestal completer en beter dan de Lonely Planet ! Rough Guide: The Rough Guide to Iceland is the ultimate travel guide to this fascinating island... Read more
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2014
  • Natuurgids Crossbill Guides Iceland - Ijsland | KNNV
  • 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
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2017
  • Reisgids Pocket Reykjavik | Lonely Planet
  • Pocket reisgidsen van Lonely Planet zijn een kleinere versie dan de 'echte' Planets. Vaak echter van bijzondere bestemmingen binnen een bepaald land waardoor er meer aandacht is en uitgebreidere tips zijn voor die bepaalde streek i.v.m. de grote Planets. Handzaam formaat, makkelijk in de binnenzak! Tcoh ook deze vol met praktische informatie.... Read more
More books…

Maps

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
  • Fljótsdalshérað
  • Fljótsdalshérað , map no. 27, 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
  • Hoffellsjökull
  • One of the maps in the topographic survey of Iceland at 1:100,000. The series was last revised in the early eighties. Contour interval is 20 meters. In addition to the usual features shown on survey mapping, the maps also include a large amount of information indicating the type of the terrain and land use (block or smooth surfaced lava, clay,... Read more
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
  • Askja - Herdubreid - Kverkfjöll
  • Askja - Herdubreid - Kverkfjöll area of Iceland at 1:100,000 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. Two enlargements show in greater detail at 1:50,000 Öskjuvatn Lake with the... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
» Click to open
De Zwerver
Netherlands
» Click to close
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
  • Öxarfjörður
  • Öxarfjörður, map no. 19, 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
  • Vopnafjörður
  • Vopnafjörður, map no. 28, 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
  • Öræfajökull
  • One of the maps in the topographic survey of Iceland at 1:100,000. The series was last revised in the early eighties. Contour interval is 20 meters. In addition to the usual features shown on survey mapping, the maps also include a large amount of information indicating the type of the terrain and land use (block or smooth surfaced lava, clay,... Read more
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
  • Borgarfjördur
  • Borgarfjördur area of Iceland at 1:100,000 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. An enlargement shows the northern section around Nordurá River in greater detail at 1:50,000.The maps in... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
» Click to open
De Zwerver
Netherlands
  • Wandelkaart 11 Serkort Borgarfjördur - IJsland | Mal og Menning
  • De wandelkaartenserie van Mal og Menning is bijzonder duidelijk en geschikt voor alle recreatieve doeleinden, ze zijn gebaseerd op de topografische kaarten van IJsland. De kaart laat een gedetailleerd beeld zien van de landschapskenmerken, hoogtelijnen op basis van 20 m. met hoogtepunten apart vermeld. Verschil in kleur en symbolen geven een... Read more
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Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Barðaströnd
  • Barðaströnd, map no. 5, 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
  • Mývatnsöræfi
  • Mývatnsöræfi, map no. 21, 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
  • Seyðisfjörður
  • Seyðisfjörður, map no. 30, 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: Mal og menning 300K Road Atlas 2016-2017
  • Road Atlas of Iceland at 1:300,000 from Mál og menning in a spiral-bound glovebox format, with 35 street plans, several thematic maps, and cartography derived from the company’s outstanding mapping at 1:100,000.The representation of country’s topography is particularly vivid, with excellent relief shading based on satellite imagery supplemented... Read more
More maps…

Walking holidays

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
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
Snp Wandelreizen
Netherlands
  • IJsland - Landmannalaugar, Thorsmörk & Myvatn
  • Wandelreis 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 het... 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
Snp Wandelreizen
Netherlands
  • IJsland - fotoreis
  • De kleurenpracht van IJsland is ongekend. Aan de zuidkant van de Myrdalsjökull en het schiereiland Reykjanes leren we van een professionele fotograaf hoe de spetterende watervallen, de blauwwitte ijsformaties en de groenbemoste lavavelden vast te leggen. We bezoeken naast de bekende trekpleisters zoals Geysir en Gullfos, ook de prachtige... Read more
Snp Wandelreizen
Netherlands
  • IJsland - Het Noordelijk Gevoel
  • Wandelrondreis die behalve de bekende wandelgebieden bij het vulkanische Myvatn en het nationale park Skaftafell, ook het ruige binnenland bij Hveravellir en het nog nauwelijks bekende schiereiland Langanes en de ryolietbergen van Borgarfjördur bezoekt. Overnachtingen in hutten en gemeenschapshuizen. 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
More walking holidays…

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