After a scenic drive to the end of Hvalfjörður, you arrive at the foot of Iceland’s second-highest waterfall, with its nearly 200 meter drop. Not only is the hiking route easily accessible, but it takes you up a varied landscape, darting through shrubbery, along cliff sides, through a small cave, and you can even cross the river right above the drop on the return (if you are not afraid of meeting Óðinn a little early). Overall, it’s a relatively easy hike but with a couple of spots that hoist it up to moderate difficulty.
This is the one you’ve no doubt caught on Instagram. People bathing in a geothermal river in the Icelandic wilderness. Of course, what’s missing is all the other people snapping up pictures, but the 2-3 hour round trip and 347 metre elevation does deter some tourists, so the crowding doesn’t get too bad outside of peak tourist season. Even if you forgot to pack a bathing suit (or feel some kind of way about changing behind a simple wooden divider), the views and fresh air are still well worth the hike.
This is Reykjavík’s mountain, more or less. It’s the one we see when we cycle to work, when we ditch school, when we drive to that out-of-town wedding, when we hit rock bottom arguing with a cormorant at the marina. It’s always there in the distance like…well…a rock. It’s also one of the most popular hiking routes in the country for good reason and barely needs mentioning.
2022: Volcano lava field
Buy subscriptions, t-shirts and more from our shop right here!