4-Day Laugavegur Trek – Backpacking

4-Day Laugavegur Trek – Backpacking

Duration: 4 days and 1 hour / Difficulty: Challenging

Hands down the best known trek in Iceland. This trail takes adventurers from the geothermal valley of Landmannalaugar and the southern highlands, south to the Þórsmörk valley, at the foot of world famous Eyjafjallajökull volcano. The trail crosses many spectacles including the third biggest geothermal zone in the world, through yellow rhyolite mountains, over black deserts, past great canyons and finally into the verdurous valley of Þórsmörk. It is no coincidence that the “Laugavegur” hike each year attracts travelers from around the world in addition to being a great favorite amongst locals. Come see what all the fuss is about! Accommodation in mountain huts.


Day 1:  Reykjavík-Landmannalaugar-Hrafntinnusker
We take the regular public bus from BSI central bus staion at 08:00.   Arriving in Landmannalaugar at noon, we have  lunch and then head south into the mountains. The trail takes us past small gorges, steaming hot springs and yellow mountain ridges. Arrival at Hrafntinnusker mountain hut, were we will stay the night, in the late afternoon.

Distance: 12km (7.5 mi)
Walking time: 4-5 hours
Ascent: 470 m (1540 ')


Day 2: Hrafntinnusker-Álftavatn
From Hrafntinnusker we descend down in the gullies of Jökultungur with hundreds of steaming hot springs and mud pools. Up there we enjoy fascinating views to the south to the Álftavatn area (Swan Lake), and the Mýrdalsjökull and Eyjafjallajökull glaciers. In the afternoon we arrive at Álftavatn hut where we stay the night.


Distance: 12km (7.5 mi)
Walking time: 4-5 hours
Descent: 490 m (1610 ')


Day 3: Álftavatn-Emstrur
We pass at the foot of the green conic volcano of Stórasúla before entering the black deserts of Mælifellssandur. Heading towards another ancient and verdurous volcano, the Hattfell, we enter the Emstrur region where farmers used to graze their sheep in summer. Before arriving at the Botnar hut where we stay the night, we visit the magnificent Markarfljót canyon cut almost 200 m down into the rocks south of Hattfell.

Distance: 16km (10 mi)
Walking time: 6-7 hours
Descent: 40 m (130 ')


Day 4: Emstrur-Þórsmörk-Reykjavík
We continue up and down through the small valleys and gullies of Emstrur, where the great Mýrdalsjökull glacier rises only a couple of kilometers away. At the end of the day the vegetation starts to grow thicker and higher as we descend in to Þórsmörk's (the woods of Thor) green valleys filled with arctic birch forests and colorful flowers. In Thorsmork we catch the evening bus back to Reykjavík.

Distance: 17km (10.5 mi)
Walking time: 6-7 hours
Descent: 300 m (985 ')

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