Anyone who’s visited Iceland will know what we mean when we say that it’s a hiker’s paradise. The land seems to have been made for hikers! So, pack your boots and grab your walking poles; it’s time to discover Iceland the best way you can – on foot.
From newbies to those who have been ambling up mountains for as long as they can remember, Iceland welcomes all hikers to its land. The abundance of natural trails through scenic landscapes differ from a gentle stroll to ambitious climbs, making it perfect for all.
The land itself is home to a huge wealth of fantastic spots, which is why it remains a favourite for so many hikers. Mountains, glaciers, volcanoes and national parks are just a few of the places you can expect to visit. We often see guest returning year after year looking to take on their next challenge, exploring all the peaks and valleys carved into the land.
To help you start putting together your hiking checklist, our Midgard team have assembled some of our favourite spots that we recommend everyone go and explore and some tips on hiking in Iceland. Enjoy!
Midgard’s Epic Seven-Day Hiking Adventure
This is for intermediate hikers who require an epic adventure around Iceland. Midgard’s specialist seven day Hiking Adventure is probably the most detailed hiking tour available in Iceland and we guarantee your satisfaction.
The tour encompasses the best of Iceland in summer and guests can look forward to trekking across secluded parts of Iceland as well as the famed routes of Laugavegur and Fimmvörðuháls. These off the beaten track locations will keep you far from the madding crowd, allowing you to experience a side to Iceland most other tourists will never see.
Within such locations, you will witness mountains, glaciers, volcanoes, waterfalls and canyons, whilst camping in the Valley of Thor, the Nordic Thunder God.
You will become at one with nature as you enjoy the bliss of 20 daily hours of light, which provides an intoxicating feeling of energy and excitement.
You can expect to be active for 6-8 hours each, experiencing moderate to intense levels of activity.
One of Iceland’s most beautiful hiking routes, trekking Fimmvörðuháls is a stunning experience. The route starts at Skogar River, an ethereal location with over twenty waterfalls to its name before taking you through the infamous glacier of Eyjafjallajokull and Myrdalsjokull (with Katla below). We then descend into Porsmork, which feels like standing atop the world.
With Midgard Adventure you can also take advantage of our Fimmvörðuháls midnight hike. For the hike we depart Þórsmörk at around 9.00 PM, ascending to Fimmvörðuháls where we cross fresh lava and witness the new craters Magni and Móði.
The hike continues across Eyjafjallajökull (of 2010 fame) and Mýrdalsjökull (with Katla below) before descending by the Skógá river to Skógafoss.
Transfer from Hvolsvöllur (between 7-11 AM) to Þórsmörk and from Skógar to Hvolsvöllur is included.
Midgard also provide a guide for this hike. Why do you need one?
Well for a start, we make sure the forecast is ok for you to go out. Then there’s the fact you have a highly experienced mountain guide by your side, who can help keep you safe and explain the route in more detail. Finally, you don’t need to worry about logistics or transport to the hiking route.
Sounds good right? Sign up below.
For Advanced Hikers – Tindfjöll
If you’re looking to be truly challenged then a hike across Tindfjöll will be the perfect addition to your itinerary.
Tindfjöll is a mountain which stands at 1251 metres tall, and the path to its summit represents a difficult hike for those looking to push themselves whilst in Iceland.
The surrounding mountain range known as Tindfjallajökull draws its name from Tindfjöll. The whole range is actually situated on a giant crater, which is seven to ten miles in diameter. From the peak of Tindfjöll, you can experience breathtaking views over Mýrdalsjökull, Eyjafjallajökull, Þórsmörk, Markafljótsgljúfur Canyon and Fjallabak.
In other words, it’s well worth the hike!
When hikers think of Iceland, they often think of Landmannalaugar. A hot-spot for geothermal activity, there an abundance of warm rivers, streams and pools. Taking a dip in one of these after a day’s hike is pretty much one of the best feelings imaginable! There’s no better way to end a day.
The scenery, too, of the Landmannalaugar trail is extraordinary. Full of vibrant colours – red, orange, purple and green, to name just a few – and a very varied landscape, you’ll never got bored of what’s around you.
The Laugavegur trail is a somewhat challenging hike, stretching from Landmannalaugar to Thórsmörk. With 53 kilometers of ground to cover, most spend four-days and three-nights exploring this region. The route’s pretty popular and can get busy in the Spring/Summer months – and certainly not without reason! With beautiful, orange mountains, wide expanses of snowy fields and a black-sand desert to name just a few of the spectacles you’ll witness, it’s not hard to see why so many flock to this hike.
The problem here is that the route is becoming overcrowded and priding ourselves on showing guests Iceland at its raw best, Midgard doesn’t actually offer this route. Instead, choose a better option by vying for one of the above treks.
What You Need to Know
The weather throughout the year can be pretty unpredictable up here in Iceland, so you’ll need to have clothing for all conditions. We recommend having windproof, waterproof and thermal clothing available to you whenever you hike.
You should also remember that winter days are much shorter, with sunlight lasting only about four hours in December, so it’s not always the best time to hike longer trails.
Always make sure you have proper hiking gear for all kinds of surfaces, including snow, ice and water – you can encounter all sorts of grounds on the Icelandic landscape, so it pays to be prepared!
If you’d like to know more about hiking in Iceland and hear about the many spots you can explore, just give us a shout and we’ll help you out.
We love to share our knowledge with travelers so don’t be shy! If you’re staying at Midgard Base Camp, we’ll help you out when you’re here too, including helping with transport and offering advice when you plan your hikes. It’s what we’re here for and we love to do it.