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Easy hikes for the adventurous at heart and relatively healthy in Iceland?

Hi! i'm heading to Iceland in June, will be spending 10 days there (with 4 days to a music festival). I would love to see the beautiful natural settings in Iceland as much as possible, and want to do easy trails. Did a few hikes before that were easy or surprisingly-difficult-but-too-late-too-back-out. :)

Any tips on where to go? Heading to Iceland alone so would most likely join a tour plus doing own research, but would be great to have some first-hand advice!

1 Answer

answered first by
Janelle from Charleston

A nice easy place to start is Þingvellir, about an hour's drive east of Reykjavik.  Thingvellir was the site where the ancient Viking Althing (parliament) would meet.  Little traces of the Viking settlement remain, but the site has been turned into a national park set amongst a meadow through which a stream flows.  You'll see moonscape rock formations, evidence of glacial activity, and wildflowers.  Trails are well-marked and not too strenuous.

About 15 minutes up the road from Thingvellir is Selfoss, another national park built round 2 waterfalls, one of which, Dettifoss, is the largest waterfall in Europe.  Again, trails are not too strenuous. 

Both sites can be reached by motorcoach from Reykjavik's BSÍ bus station, but it's preferable to have your own car in Iceland as public transport schedules are often inconvenient.  The roads are well-maintained and well-signed and if you have a good navigation programme it's easy to find your way.  Driving in Iceland during daylight is safe, but it's not advisable to drive at night because roads are poorly lit and free-range farm animals frequently cross roads.  Avoid renting your car at Keflavik Airport - you will get better rates in central Reykjavik.  Take the bus from the airport to the BSI station - there is a rental car lot next to it that has Budget, Hertz and several local companies. 

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Þingvellir (attraction)
  2. Reykjavik (city)
  3. Selfoss (city)
  4. BSÍ (attraction)
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