Trails of the
National Park and the Nature Reserves.
The main hiking routes in the Nature
Reserves are marked. Organized walking tours under the
guidance of a warden are on offer
In the past the number of trails in the
National Park Area was great. Some still exist and are
passable. One of them, in reasonably good conditions,
follows the coastline. It is rather long and is best
followed in stages of a few days. Another shorter
trail followes the foot of Mt Snaefell.
Moduvor - Skardsvik - Ondverdarnes (4 km; 2,5 miles).
This pleasant trail passes through cove Skardsvik's light
coloured beach. On the lava spit Ondverdarnes are
ruins of fishermen's huts. During the fishing season,
the fishermen fetched fresh water to the well Falki (Falcon)
Ondverdarnesholar craters. Several trails lead
there from the main road. The distance to the craters
Vatnsborgarholl and Vatnsborg is 2 km/1,5 miles, and to
crater Grasholl another 1 km/0,6 miles. From the
craters easy trails take you to Skalasnagi and Ondverdarnes,
or to cove Beruvik.
Sheep pen Klofningsrett on cove Beruvik - Litlalon -
Holaholar (4 km/2,5 miles). This is an attractive
coastal path with picturesqe lava landscapes on both sides
of the mostly grassy trail. Cove Beruvik once was a
lively community and Holaholar a large homestead.
Djupalonssandur - Dritvik (1 km/0,6 miles). The
trail from the parking area at Djupalonssandur is somewhat
steep, but has been improved reasonably well. From
there to cove Dritvik another lava-trail continues. An
old lava-maze, made by the fishermen for amusement, is
located on Sudurbardi. Both Coves, Djupalon and
Dritvik, were bustling communities of about 1000 people
during the 18th century' fishing seasons. From cove
Dritvik it is possible to continue past lava field
Beruvikurhraun to Sandholar, which would increase the
distance to 4 km/2,5 miles.
Svalthufa - Malarrif (2 km/1,5 miles). A short
winding trail past the crater plugs Londrangar to the
Valley Eysteinsdalur. The road into the valley
follows the usually dry bed of stream Modulaekur in the
direction of the glacier. Short walk from the road
include crater Raudholl and the vantage point Sjonarholl.
Also a short distance away from the road are the
dolerite-capped hillock Klukka and the waterfall Klukkufoss.
The deep ravine Blagil is also within easy reach.
There are also several tempting peaks nearby, i.e. Hreggnasi
(469m/1539 feet; easy), Bardarkista (668m/2192 feet; more
challenging), and Mt West Geldingavell (830m/2723 feet; more
old trail across the Budahraun lava field is known as
It leads to the Budaklettur rock, past the Budahellir cave, and
onwards across the lava field. In places, hoof prints chiselled by
horses into the rock are visible. The Klettsgata trail makes an
enjoyable hiking tour, suitable for all. An estimated three-hour walk.
Jadargatan (Jadragatan) trail lies along the edge of the lava
to a big rock, south of the Midhusatun field, where it joins with the
Klettagata trail. The trail is vague in many places. The estimated
walking time from Budir is two hours.
enjoyable route leads to
where the spirit of days gone by prevails among historical relics
covered in vegetation. A walk from the church to Frambudir takes about
half an hour.
Budir - Arnarstapi.
is possible to walk from the Budir Nature Reserve to the beach at
Arnarstapi and Hellnar. Hikers should assume 6-8 hours for this walk.
Arnarstapi - Cliff Solvahamar.
old route lies along the
cliff to the foot of the glacier, the site of the Solvhamar
ruins, which are protected by the National Museum of Iceland. A walk
from Arnarstapi to Solvahamar takes less than an hour and is never a
Arnarstapi - Hellnar.
The lava field between
Arnarstapi and Hellnar, all the way from the sea up to the glacier, is
called Hellnahraun. A trail called
lies across the lava along the beach. From the clear
path it is amazing to watch the never-ending sculptures of
nature and strange landscapes. This
walk takes a good hour.
above Hellnar is
lake Bardarlaug, an explosive crater from the close of the
last glacial epoch. The crater was protected as a national
of lake Bardarlaug are the ruins of the ancient
a former parliamentary site. Gudrun Thorbjarnardottir, one of the most
widely travelled women of her time, was born here (the
earlier Saga Period).
of the Hnausahraun lava field the
ravine cuts into the east side of Mt. Botnsfjall. The river
Sleggjubeina runs along the bottom of the ravine. There is a short
walk from the road to the ravine.
southern shores of the Snaefellsnes peninsula provide a good view of
the circle of mountains reaching from the Reykjanes peninsula in the
south to Borgarfiord Bay and the glaciers beyond. Nearer to the east
lies the Snaefellsnes Mountain Ridge, at the foot of which is the
vibrant green Stadarsveit area, with its yellow beaches of mollusc
sand. The Bjarnafoss Waterfall is just above Budir.
Under the waterfall stands "Fjallkonan" ('a lady of
the mountains' - a symbol of Iceland), the spray from the waterfall
falling on her shoulders and bosom.
Directly north of Budir is Mt. Maelifell,
a peculiar but beautifully formed mountain. North of the
Arnarstapi village is Mt. Stapafell, a 526-metre
hyaloclastite mountain. It is easy to climb the mountain's
northern ridge, but the slope becomes steeper near the
summit. The cliff belt on top of the mountain is not easily
climbed. The jewel in the crown of Snaefellsnes is the
Snaefellsjokull ice cap itself, shrouded in mystery and regarded by some people as one of the
seven main energy centres of the Earth. The glacier is
inhabited by one Bardur Snaefellsas, protector of the
region. Scaling the glacier itself is fairly easy, except
for Midthufan, the highest of its three peaks, which is
volcanic system named after Snaefellsjokull bears witness to unique
volcanic eruptions dating both from the last Ice Age and the
post-glacial period. The volcanic system is about 30 kilometres long,
extending from Mt. Maelifell in the east to the Ondverdarnes
peninsula, in the west. At least 20 lava fields belong to the volcanic
system, the lifeline of which is a magma chamber several kilometres
beneath the glacier itself. The Snaefellsjokull glacier is an old
strato-volcano, which has been the source of both explosive eruptions
and lava eruptions. Tongues of lava, which flowed down the slopes of
the mountain, can be seen in many places. Some of them reach all the
way to the sea. The crater on top of the glacier is about 200 metres
deep. Three peaks are on the edges of the crater, the middle one being
the highest, reaching an altitude of about 1,446 metres.
open all year