Iceland is known for its stunning landscapes, and one of the most unique features of the country is its active volcanoes. The country is home to over 30 active volcanic systems, and with the right planning, visitors can witness the sheer power of these geological wonders up close. With a rental car and a pair of hiking boots, you can explore some of the most beautiful volcanoes and craters that Iceland has to offer.
We created a tour of 10 of our favourite accessible volcanoes all around Iceland. All of them are easily accessible some are only a few steps from the car but others demand more planning and longer hikes. We’ve included a map of the volcanoes
Note. When we use the word accessible in this article we’re not referring to wheelchair accessible but close to the roads, some with good trails and even steps up the crater sides.
10 Accessible Volcanoes
Going clockwise around the country leaving Keflavik Airport, stopping in Reykjavík and then heading to the western part, going north and finally to the south.
Fagradalsfjall, located on the Reykjanes Peninsula in southwestern Iceland, is one of the most recent and accessible volcanic systems that visitors can explore. This active volcano offers a rare opportunity to witness a lava eruption firsthand. Visitors can hike to the top of the volcano and watch the lava flow from a safe distance.
Búrfellsgjá, located in Heiðmörk nature reserve near Reykjavík, is a volcanic fissure that offers an easy hike for visitors of all skill levels. The fissure is surrounded by lush vegetation and provides a unique glimpse into Iceland’s volcanic history.
Grábrók is another accessible volcanic system located in western Iceland near the town of Borgarnes. Visitors can hike to the top of this volcanic crater and take in the stunning views of the surrounding landscape.
Eldborg á Mýrum is a volcanic crater located in western Iceland near the town of Borgarnes. The hike to the top of Eldborg is relatively easy and offers breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside.
Saxhóll, located on the Snæfellsnes Peninsula in western Iceland, is a volcanic crater that offers a unique hiking experience. The crater is easily accessible, and visitors can hike to the top and take in the views of the surrounding landscape.
Hverfjall, located in northern Iceland near Lake Mývatn, is a tuff ring volcano that offers a moderate hike to the top. From the top, visitors can see the nearby Lake Mývatn and surrounding volcanic landscapes.
Askja, located in central Iceland in the highlands, is a caldera that offers a challenging but rewarding hiking experience. Visitors can hike to the top of the caldera and witness the stunning views of the surrounding landscape.
Magni and Móði Craters at Fimmvörðuháls are volcanic craters located on the Fimmvörðuháls trail in southern Iceland. Visitors can hike to the top of these craters and take in the views of the nearby glaciers and volcanoes.
Eldfell, located on the island of Heimaey, is a volcanic cone that is part of the Westman Islands archipelago off the southern coast of Iceland. Visitors can hike to the top of the cone and take in the views of the surrounding islands and ocean. Next to the crater is a beautiful museum, Eldheimar, on the eruption in 1973 and its effects on the small fishing village of Vestmannaeyjar.
Kerid, located in southern Iceland near the town of Selfoss, is a volcanic crater lake that offers a unique hiking experience. Visitors can hike around the rim of the crater and take in the views of the stunning blue lake below.
Lava Centre is a must stop
In between hikes, preferably between Eldfell and Kerid, visitors can head to the LAVA Centre exhibition in Hvolsvöllur to learn more about Iceland’s volcanic history. The exhibit showcases the different types of volcanoes, the frequency of eruptions, and the immense power of these geological wonders.
Iceland’s active volcanoes offer a unique opportunity to witness the raw power of nature up close. With a rental car and a pair of hiking boots, visitors can explore some of the most beautiful and accessible volcanic systems that Iceland has to offer. And for those who want to learn more about the science behind these stunning geological formations, the LAVA Centre exhibition is the cherry on the cake.