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The Laugavegur Trail

Iceland’s Laugavegur Trail will be, we predict, one of the most exciting and spectacular hiking experiences you’ll ever have. The view here is like from another world. Sometimes it is unthinkable to even imagine how it came to be on earth. The main ingredient of this recipe is that this small island is volcanic. It’s almost a geological wonder… Sometimes the hills look like liquid lava frozen over time. Sometimes you will pass through plateaus of black volcanic ash that make you feel like you are walking on the moon. It is a completely different feeling to go down the mountains and see countless perfectly shaped volcano fragments rising from under the ground on this hike.

There is no other place on earth like Iceland. The Laugavegur Trail offers tourists the opportunity to take a 3-4 day hike that covers different landscapes of the country. The Laugavegur Trail is one of the most popular destinations in the tourism world, and for good reason. Imagine combining the Laugavegur trail with a 1-2 day Fimmvörðuháls trail to get one of the best hiking experiences in the world. Imagine a beautiful setting that rewards you with its natural landscapes.

Possible Routes

The Laugavegur Trail is a 35-mile (55 km) trail between Landmannalaugar and Thorsmork. The average journey takes 3-4 days. Most travelers then proceed from Thorsmork to Skogar via the Fimmvorduhals pass, which takes about 10 hours or 1-2 days. Note that the Iceland Tour Association (Ferðafélag Íslands) offers detailed route options for both the Laugavegur and Fimmvorduhals routes. A few small side trips can also be made along the way. If you want, you can even stay a day or two at Thorsmork to explore the area.


  • LENGTH: 35 miles
  • DURATION: 3-4 days
  • TYPE: One-way
  • START: Landmannalaugar
  • FINISH: Þórsmörk (Thorsmork)
  • BEST TIME: Mid-July to mid-September

The Laugavegur Trail is the most popular trail in Iceland. Laugavegur Road generally runs from north to south. But geographically, there is no reason not to travel from south to north as well. North Road in Landmannalaugar South Road in Thorsmork is approximately 300 meters above sea level. The route you choose therefore has little effect on the effort required to travel. Traveling from north to south will start in the mountains of Iceland and work your way south towards the coast. One of the benefits is that the view in front of you is magnificent as you descend from the mountain plateau to Alftavatn Cottage. On the other hand, if you are traveling from south to north, the benefits of enjoying the natural hot springs in Landmannalaugar await at the end of your hike! But keep in mind that hut orders must be placed from north to south during peak season. Therefore, hiking from south to north during peak season is only possible if you plan to camp.

Know Before You Go

What To Expect

The journey will generally take four days and three nights. Of course, you can extend or shorten your journey as you wish, according to your preferences. As I mentioned earlier, the Laugavegur Classic Tour usually starts in Landmannalaugar and travels north to south towards Thorsmork. From Thorsmark you can return to Reykjavik by bus. Or you can continue your hike towards Skogar for another day or two. You can also go south to north from Skogar or Thorsmork to Landmannalaugar. Whichever direction you decide to take, you can easily take the buses to and from Landmannalaugar and Thorsmork at the beginning and end of your trip.



Walk through the snowy, frosty red and golden rhyolite hills. If you are lucky enough to breathe good air into your lungs, you will be able to see the glaciers in the distance. The path stretches from hill to hill, constantly climbing and descending during the day. Look at the images of geothermal activity like steam rising from a warm place under this non-earthly landscape!



Continue for the second day at the height of the Icelandic mountains, Hrafntinnusker Hut. Continue your walk through the rolling terrain through several small ravines before reaching a ridge overlooking Alftavatn. The giant valley and lake are a turning point in the scenery along Laugavegur. Suddenly green mountains and mossy tundra dominate the landscape. The trail descends into a lush green valley where you can camp or stay overnight in the Alftavatn hut.



On the third day of the track, you will be accompanied by a black volcanic rock dessert. As you walk past the grassy mountains and the endless black rocks, you will feel as if you are on the surface of the moon for a while. When you arrive at your destination for the evening, you can choose between Emstrur or Botnar Huts or set up camp by a small river. Be sure to visit Markarfljótsgljúfur Canyon, an amazing creek a short distance from the huts.



You will walk ten miles to Thorsmork and witness the wide views of another glacier that stretches far along the road. During the trip you will cross the largest river and then on your way to the Thorsmork Valley you will get acquainted with a unique area of the birch forest. These marvelous landscapes continue to fascinate people.

Weather On The Laugavegur Trail

The weather on the Laugavegur Trail can be eerie. It can attack unexpectedly. Wind, rain and snow are common any time of the year. Strong winds can turn a pleasant day into a pleasant cooling off. Light drizzle can quickly turn into pouring rain. This trail is only accessible from June to mid-September. July is the most popular time. Even in the middle of summer you will go for a walk in the snowy areas.


On any backpacking trip, it is vital to have the proper gear. Knowing what to bring could not only be the difference between comfort and discomfort but could be as serious as life and death.

Some necessities to backpack the Laugavegur trail include (but are not limited to):

  • Waterproof everything. Make sure to have a raincoat! Rain pants would also be worthwhile. Also, you should bring a backpack rain cover to protect your gear. To keep everything dry, you can use a dry bag on the inside or just line your backpacking pack with a plastic garbage bag (cheap waterproofing!)
  • Worn in hiking boots or shoes (also waterproof!)
  • Water shoes for river crossings (river sandals like Chacos are perfect for this)
  • Wool socks (wool stays warm even when it gets wet so it is crucial for Iceland hiking!)
  • A warm jacket (down or synthetic)
  • A sleeping bag (even if you stay in the huts, you’ll need to bring your own sleeping bag! Synthetic insulation stays warm when wet, compared to down)
  • Water bottle. (You can treat water from any of the streams along the trail, but the huts also have potable water.)
  • Camping equipment (Only if you are planning to camp)

Guided Or Independent?

It would be much more beneficial for you to act with a guide. Because the guide can give you invaluable information about the natural history and scenery of the area. In addition, your journey will be even more enjoyable with the conversations and stories you will make along the way when you are bored. Guides know the best on-road snacks, the best eateries, and off-road destinations. Overall, the guidance service will help you prepare yourself for the full experience. Because for you, this method will help reduce the stress on you as a traveller. If you decide to travel on the Laugavegur Trail, a life experience you will never forget will be included in the list of the best memories of your life. You will feel as if you have traveled to a fairy tale world!



  • melisa henderson
    October 8, 2019

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    • Stephen Lawson
      October 8, 2019

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  • Janet Fernandez
    October 8, 2019

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