Travel search
Can't find it? Try searching for it :)

THE CLASSIC CIRCLE - ICE AND LAVA

icecave9.jpg
4 THE CLASSIC CIRCLE - ICE AND LAVA
THE CLASSIC CIRCLE - ICE AND LAVA

The Classical Circle has all the best Icelandic nature has to offer; Lava fields, Glaciers, hot Springs, Volcanoes, Waterfalls, Rivers and much more. In a single trip you can enjoy the beauty of Þingvellir National Park, have a taste of the barren expanses of the Icelandic interior on Kaldidalur road, get up close and personal with a glacier on Langjökull Glacier and see some of the most beautiful waterfalls in the country like Glymur in Hvalfjörður an Hraunfossar in Borgarfjörður. Two of the biggest lava caves in Iceland, Surtshellir and Víðgelmir are in the area and so is the most powerful hot spring in Europe, Deildartunguhver. The area is also the setting of many of the best known Icelandic Sagas, like Egils Saga, and the great poet and scholar Snorri Sturluson wrote his most famous work in Reykholt.

The Classical Circle can be travelled all year round except for Kaldidalur road which is closed during winter. An alternative to Kaldidalur is the Uxarhryggir road.

Nature Highlights

Borgarfjörður

Borgarnes

Akranes

Hvalfjörður

The itinerary

Þingvellir national park

Drive from Reykjavík on road nr.36 to Þingvellir national park. The ,,Althing“ at Þingvellir was Iceland's supreme legislative and judicial authority from its establishment in 930 until 1262. Major events in the history of Iceland have taken place at Þingvellir and therefore the place is held in high esteem by all Icelanders. At Þingvellir you will find the waterfall Öxarárfoss. After you stop at Þingvellir you take rode 52 to road Uxahryggir if open.

Borgarfjörður

Some of Iceland´s most beautiful nature wonders can be found in Borgarfjörður, Hraunfossar waterfalls “lava falls”, are unique and picturesque waterfalls that come from underneath the edge of a lava field and spill into the glacial river Hvítá. Deildartunguhver is Europe's most powerful hot spring. It provides at the moment 200 l/sec of 100°C hot water. There are two famous caves in Borgarfjörður Víðgelmir and Surtshellir. Much has been written about Surtshellir and it is told that in earlier centuries a group of outlaws lived in the lava tube. Víðgelmir lava tube is the largest of all lava tubes in Iceland. If you are looking for hikes It is nice to take a short hike to the Glanni waterfall and explore the Grábrók Volcanic Crater. Hafnarfjall Mountain is 804 meters and it takes 4 hours to hike up and down. From Hafnarfjall Mountain you have a great view over Borgarnes and Borgarfjörður.

Borgarnes

Borgarnes is the centre for trade and services in the Borgarfjörður area and has been so since the late 19th century when the town began to be built. In Borgarnes are two museums Settlement center and Borgarfjörður museum. Borgarnes thermal pool is a nice place to visit all year. In Borgarnes is an old style playground “Bjössaróló” built by a man that lived in Borgarnes. Bjössaróló is a great place to visit for kids. Borgarnes has good accommodation options and is a great place to grab a bite.

Hvalfjörður

In Hvaljörður or ,,Whale Fjord” you will find spectacular nature and history sites. The main attraction is in the end of the fjord the highest waterfall in Iceland Glymur. It takes about 4 hours to get to Glymur and back down.  Hallgrímskirkja church at Saurbær іs dedicated to Hallgrímur Pétursson, the most famous poet of Iceland which lived in Hvalfjörður. He is even on the 10.000 krona bill. During World War II, a naval base of the British and American navies could be found in this fjord. One of the piers built by the United States Navy was later used by the Hvalur whaling company.

Akranes

Akranes is the largest town in the west of Iceland. Grate outdoor area is the small forest at Garðalundur and facilities improved for outdoor activities. There is a playground for kids, a beach volleyball court and a grill area. Thermal Pool, Golf Course and the two kinds of beaches, black sand beach and white. Langisandur is white sand beaches which is rear in Iceland. Langisandur is a nice place to take a walk and if you are brave you can go for a swim. Akranes Lighthouse is open for people in summer and you can go up to the top and enjoy the view. Akranes Museum area exhibits from former times, bearing witness to farming, housekeeping and social conditions in and around Akranes. Akranes offers good resturants and accommodation.

Iceland Winter Break, Winter in West Iceland, is a cooperative project in West Iceland, spearheaded by the West Iceland Marketing Office, that aims to show travelers everything the area has to offer during winter.

Activities
Restaurants and cafés Accommodation
Bjarteyjarsandur Bjarteyjarsandur Akranes Hostel
Brilliant tours Ensku Húsin Borgarnes Bed & Breakfast
Culture and craft Galito Ensku Húsin 
Grenigerði Gamla kaupfélagið Fosshótel Reykholt 
Háafell goat farm Hótel Húsafell Hótel Bifröst 
Hespa Hraunsnef  Hotel Glymur 
Into the glacier Iceland guesthouse Hvítá Hotel Hafnarfjall
Ljómalind The settlement centre Hotel Húsafell
Snorrastofa Hotel Glymur  Hraunsnef country hotel
The Settlement centre Icelandair hotel Hamar  Iceland guesthouse Hvítá
Wild West Tours Hótel Bifröst  Icelandair hotel Hamar 
Wool centre Hvanneyri Fosshótel Reykholt   

 

The Circle
  • Borgarnes
    Borgarnes lies in the middle of West Iceland about 75 km from Reykjavík City Centre.In Borgarnes you can create an unforgettable holiday: breakfast a...
    Read More
  • Hvanneyri
    For centuries Hvanneyri has been a chuch centre and a small comunity of 250 inhabitants formed around agricultural organizations. The main one is th...
    Read More
  • Reykholt
    Reykholt is one of Iceland's most notable historical sites. It houses a cultural centre and a church. Reykholt is most famous for being the home of Ic...
    Read More
  • Húsafell
    In Húsafell surrounding nature you can expect to find dense woodlands, waterfalls, glaciers, rugged lava, crystal springs, wildflowers plus remarkabl...
    Read More
  • Langjokull Glacier
    Langjokull Glacier is the second largest glacier in Iceland, and is approximately 18 km from Husafell (tourist resort). Excursions onto the glacier ar...
    Read More
  • Akranes
    Akranes is just a stone's throw away from the capital largest town in West Iceland with the population 7.421. The Museum Area at Gardar is without a d...
    Read More
  • Lava Waterfalls
    Hraunfossar - Lava Falls - are beautiful and unusual natural phenomena. Clear, cold springs of subterranean water seep through the lava and run as tin...
    Read More
  • Deildartunguhver thermal spring
    Deildartunguhver highest flow hot spring in Europe !Deildartunguhver is Europe's most powerful hot spring. It provides 180 l/sec of 100°C hot water. ...
    Read More

West Iceland

Towns & Villages

The population centres in West Iceland are as varied as they are many. Ten places have over 50 residents and Akranes is the most densely populated with 6,500 inhabitants. 

All of the larger communities put ever-increasing emphasis on dynamic tourism where a wide selection of recreation and services are offered.   

Explore map by categories

Map Hellissandur, Rif Grundarfjörður Stykkishólmur Búðardalur Dalir Arnarstapi Hellnar Snæfellsnes Bifröst Húsafell Reykholt Borgarfjörður Hvanneyri Borgarnes Hvalfjörður Akranes Ólafsvík