From Iceland — Borgarfjörður: Glaciers, Hot Springs & The Heart Of The Sagas

Borgarfjörður: Glaciers, Hot Springs & The Heart Of The Sagas

Sam O'Donnell
Photo by
Art Bicnick

Published September 23, 2019

Requiring a slight detour from Route 1, Borgarfjörður is an area of subtle beauty and historic importance that rewards the curious traveller who makes the effort to visit. Known for its links to the Icelandic Sagas, its geothermal activity, and the stunning Langjökull glacier, Borgarfjörður’s peaceful landscape is soundtracked in the warmer months by the haunting sound of snipe drumming. Inland to the East, nestled between grassy hills, Húsafell offers an excellent base to explore the area. 

From ice-hiking, snowmobiling or wandering through the dramatic ice caves of Langjökull, to exploring the depths of Iceland’s largest lava cave at Víðgelmir, there’s a myriad of action-packed options available. Down the road, the eye is caught by glimpses of astonishingly blue water peeking through the shrubbery. Hraunfossar and Barnafossar, two sister waterfalls on the Hvítá river, are definitely worth stopping for. Finally, a day out in Borgarfjörður is not complete without stopping to see the spectacular Deildartunguhver hot springs.

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Let’s hear it from you!

Name: Sarah, Chris & Ingrid

From: Canada

How do you like Borgarfjörður?: “Well, we just drove up. Last night we were near Snæfellsjökull. We drove up here because we wanted to see the waterfalls, and we planned to drive through the glaciers,” Sarah says. “We’re stayed in Borgarnes, and that is really nice.”

Have you had any adventures in the area?: “Just walking around by the Hraunfossar waterfall,” Chris says, grinning. It’s really cool how it comes out of the rocks like that.”

Name: Scott & Jenny

From: United States

What brings you to Iceland?: “We wanted to see different landscapes and have adventures,” Scott says.

And have you had any adventures yet?: “Actually, yeah, a little bit! We couldn’t figure out how to reverse in the car. That was interesting,” Jenny says, laughing. “It took us half an hour to reverse the car.”

What are your plans?: “We’re going to drive around the Ring Road. We have a little guide book and we’re going to try to see as many cool things as we can,” Scott says. “We’re trying to get away from the main tourist spots and see some unique sites.”

What are you doing today in Borgarfjörður?: “We’re going to the two waterfalls today, Hraunfossar and Barnafossar,” Jenny says. Scott nods. “There’s also a cave with lava flow that we want to check out. We’ll probably go there tomorrow.”

Meet a local!

Name: Lára Kristin. 

From: Borgafjörður

Occupation: Owner of Brúarás 

What do you like most about Borgarfjörður?: “We have a beautiful landscape,” Lára says. “I hike a lot and there are a lot of places to hike.”

Which is your favourite place to hike?: “Around Húsafell is very good,” she says. “A lot of hiking trails go up to the mountain.” 

And how do you like living in Borgarfjörður?: “I like it very much here,” Lára says, smiling. “I lived for one year in Reykajvík but I like it better here.”

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