Guidebook

Hike the Rugged Mountains of Northern Iceland

Some of the wildest and most remote day hikes in Europe!

Charlie Boscoe

Description

The small village of Skagafjörður isn't the sort of place you stumble across. It's not on Iceland's Highway 1 (which circles the entire country) and you have to make a conscious decision to visit. Even towns on Highway 1 can go hours without seeing a visitor, so towns like Skagafjörður are pretty peaceful! The village became even tougher to reach in 2018 when the regular flights to Skagafjörður from Reykjavík ceased.

For those who like their mountains quiet and wild, the above explanation of why Skagafjörður is so hard to reach should read like an explanation of why it's so appealing. You will have all of these hikes to yourself and at the end of each day you'll be able to sit in silence and enjoy the huge open spaces of northern Iceland. The hikes described in here are all pretty straightforward (albeit fairly long in a couple of cases) so this is a great area to explore for families.

Being out in the North Atlantic Ocean, a sunny climate is one thing for which Iceland is not known. The winters are frankly brutal and there are plenty of wet days in the summer. As such you'll need to factor in a few bad weather days when planning a hiking trip to Skagafjörður, but there's plenty to do on even the wettest days. Perhaps the most relaxing option is simply to sit inside with a good book and watch the clouds swirl around the fjords, but if you want to get out and about then boat tours to Drangey Island (a birdwatching paradise which is home to thousands of amazingly tame puffins) are popular, as are fishing trips. The area around Skagafjörður also contains a number of museums, exhibitions and traditional Icelandic villages, so there's plenty to explore. There are even several horse stables nearby so if you need a break from hiking you can saddle up and let a horse take the strain for a day or 2!

It's tough to get to, the weather is wild and there's no nightlife in sight, but if you want an unforgettable ambience, untamed mountains and deep blue fjords, look no further.

Glerhallavík, Northwest Iceland

Glerhallavík, Northwest Iceland

0 - 1 hrs
3.2 km
86 m
86 m
Nature walk to this beautiful cove
Moderate
Private
Gvendarskál, Northwest Iceland

Gvendarskál, Northwest Iceland

2 - 3 hrs
4.9 km
433 m
433 m
Steep walk on a stony path - Beautiful view
Moderate
Private
Glóðafeykir, northwest Iceland

Glóðafeykir, northwest Iceland

3 - 4 hrs
7.3 km
809 m
809 m
Magnificent view of Skagafjörður
Difficult
Private
Áshildarholtsvatn, North Iceland

Áshildarholtsvatn, North Iceland

1 - 2 hrs
5.0 km
48 m
49 m
Unique bird life around the lake Áshildarholtsvatn from May till September..
Easy
Private
Borgarsandur beach, North Iceland

Borgarsandur beach, North Iceland

1 - 2 hrs
7.3 km
98 m
98 m
Nice and easy walk along the black beach.
Easy
Private
Hegranesviti Lighthouse I, Northwest Iceland

Hegranesviti Lighthouse I, Northwest Iceland

1 - 2 hrs
5.9 km
109 m
109 m
Scenic walk to a lighthouse
Easy
Private
Hegranesviti Lighthouse II, Northwest Iceland

Hegranesviti Lighthouse II, Northwest Iceland

0 - 1 hrs
3.8 km
64 m
64 m
Easy hike with beautiful view and wildlife.
Easy
Private
Örlygsstadir waterfall, Northwest Iceland

Örlygsstadir waterfall, Northwest Iceland

1 - 2 hrs
4.6 km
244 m
243 m
short hike to the near waterfall
Easy
Private
Litli skógur og Skógarhlíðin Sauðárkróki

Litli skógur og Skógarhlíðin Sauðárkróki

1 - 2 hrs
5.0 km
219 m
226 m
Beautiful trail with stunning view ower the town and the fjord
Easy
Private
Mælifellshnjúkur, Northwest Icceland

Mælifellshnjúkur, Northwest Icceland

3 - 4 hrs
7.6 km
703 m
703 m
One of the most famous mountain hikes in Skagafjörður.
Moderate
Private
Tindastóll, Northwest Iceland

Tindastóll, Northwest Iceland

3 - 4 hrs
8.7 km
721 m
720 m
Scenic hike, with great view over Skagafjörður bay.
Moderate
Private
Gilsbunga, Northwest Iceland

Gilsbunga, Northwest Iceland

3 - 4 hrs
11.3 km
499 m
499 m
Amazing view is well worth the effort
Moderate
Private
Skiing lodge in Tindastóll - Einhyrningur, Northwest Iceland

Skiing lodge in Tindastóll - Einhyrningur, Northwest Iceland

2 - 3 hrs
5.9 km
448 m
448 m
Hike with amazing view that is well worth the effort
Moderate
Private
Skíðaskáli Tindastóls - Hraksíðuá, Northwest Iceland

Skíðaskáli Tindastóls - Hraksíðuá, Northwest Iceland

1 - 2 hrs
6.0 km
155 m
532 m
Beautiful scenery over Skagafjörður and Sauðárkrókur.
Easy
Private
Hróarsgötur, Northwest Iceland

Hróarsgötur, Northwest Iceland

1 - 2 hrs
6.1 km
116 m
296 m
A fun hike that includes a beautiful view over the farms and fjords in the area.
Easy
Private
Molduxi, Northwest Iceland

Molduxi, Northwest Iceland

4 - 5 hrs
12.3 km
734 m
736 m
Popular hike with stunning view.
Moderate
Private