Seeing the volcano is the experience of a lifetime. I highly encourage everyone who has the health, to go and visit this incredible natural phenomenon and spend some time in awe of nature.
That said, there are some important things to keep in mind. Here’s some advice.
Bring a COVID mask. You may encounter hundreds or even thousands of people on your hike. In some places, the trail is quite narrow and it can be difficult or impossible to maintain a 2m distance.
Dress appropriately for the weather forecast, and be prepared if weather worsens before you’ve made it back. Layers are always recommended, so you can add or remove clothing as needed. Suggested clothing (really for any hike in Iceland):
Base layer in a moisture-wicking material such as light wool or polypropylene (not cotton!)
Warm layer over this, such as fleece or a wool sweater.
A waterproof outer layer, because the weather can be unpredictable and you don’t want to end up cold and wet
A warm hat and mittens are always recommended.
If the forecast is for cold or windy weather, or if you will be out for a long time, or plan to stay after sunset, bring an extra layer just in case.
Wear proper hiking boots if you have them. The trail can be quite muddy and slippery in some places, and in parts is quite uneven, especially close to the volcano. If you don’t have hiking boots, wear at least good sneakers or running shoes. If it’s been snowing, it’s a good idea to bring micro spikes for better traction.
Bring water and a snack. A small backpack is ideal to allow you to carry these items, as well as stashing extra layers, mittens, etc if you get too warm on your hike.
The hiking distance from the car park will probably end up being approximately 5-5,5 km into the valley, each way. Most of the trail is quite good and fairly flat, but there are two very steep sections. If you hike fast and without stopping, it might take as little as 1 hour. If you hike at a more leisurely pace, it may take up to two hours each way. If you spend an hour at the eruption site, you might be outside for 5 hours or more.
If you wish to see the volcano at sunset or in the dark, make sure to bring a flashlight or headlamp.
If you wish to photograph the volcano, a polarizing filter is a good idea. You won’t be extremely close to the lava flows, so a medium telephoto zoom lens (focal length approximately 100-200) is a good choice. A longer lens could be a good choice also, but then you’ll probably want a tripod and need to carry it all the way. Your choice, of course.
To get there, it’s about a 45 minute drive from Eyrarbakki along the road Suðurstandavegur. Check the website road.is for current conditions and closures. It is generally a good road, but winter conditions can make driving difficult sometimes. Also, there was some damage during recent earthquakes, so sometimes the road is closed.
The road is one-way from Grindavík to Ísólfsskáli, but you can get to within approximately 1,5 km from the trailhead. There are fewer cars coming from this direction, so you should be able to find a good parking spot. If you are coming from Reykjavík, you can perhaps get a bit closer to the trailhead, but because of the number of people visiting the site every day, you may not be able to get any closer. I wouldn’t recommend going out of your way, as it adds an extra 45 minutes or so of driving. From the car park, you can either start on the trail that begins near where you’ve parked, or you can walk along the road until the start of the trail.
Located on the south coast just 10 minutes from Highway 1 and Selfoss, 45 minutes from Reykjavík, Eyrarbakki is the perfect base to explore:
The Golden Circle
The South Coast waterfalls and geological formations
Reykjanes Peninsula geology and geothermal areas
Hellisheiði Geothermal Power Plant
Árnessýsla Folk Museum and Maritime Museum in Eyrarbakki
Our little village is right on the seaside, and it is quiet, tranquil, and safe. Enjoy the fresh sea air and the sound of the waves when you step out the door. Walk the length of the town or even to Stokkseyri on the seaside path, starting just behind the building. Take in the colorful old houses and learn about the history of Iceland. Watch seabirds and shore birds in summer or the northern lights in the winter, right outside your door.
Bakki Hostel & Apartments has 36 bunk beds in shared dorms for 6-12 people each, and 13 apartments that can be arranged as double, triple or quad rooms as needed, or as single rooms for teachers, guides, and drivers, to accommodate a school group of 50+.
We are all back in Ireland and I just wanted to write to tell you how happy we were with the hostel and restaurant. It is one of the best experiences I have had as a teacher travelling with a group of students. The location was perfect, the facilities were excellent and the staff were so helpful. The restaurant staff were also equally great to deal with and the food was super.
Thank you for all of your help. The students have amazing memories that will last them a lifetime. I will definitely be back to Bakki Hostel!
Take in the sight and sounds of the sea from your deck in our Deluxe Apartments, or peace and quiet in the courtyard from our Standard Studio Apartments. Now that the decks have been built, private hot tubs for the Deluxe apartments are coming soon! Each Deluxe apartment will have its own hot tub on the deck.
Our older apartments, the Standard One-Bedroom Apartments, don’t have decks, but they have plenty of space inside.
We have now opened our latest addition to Bakki Hostel and Apartments, three new Deluxe One-Bedroom Apartments. Featuring all-new construction and sleek Scandinavian design, these apartments are perfect for couples or families. The spacious bedroom features a large double/king size bed or two single beds, a wardrobe, and a flat-panel TV with Roku. The living area has a sofa that opens to a double/full bed, a dining area, and another TV with Roku. In the kitchen, you will find an induction cooktop, toaster, Senseo coffee maker, kettle, built-in refrigerator, and microwave. The bathroom has a spacious rain shower.
As of July 2016, we have two new studio apartments. These will be part of our section of 5 deluxe apartments with hot tubs. The landscaping outside is still a work in progress and the hot tubs won’t be ready until spring 2017, but the apartments are ready and available now for a discounted price.
[header type=”h5″] All the comforts of home[/header]
All of our apartments include a fully-equipped kitchen with refrigerator, microwave, stove, and cooking utensils, as well as coffee and tea making facilities and a dining area. Our new deluxe apartments include a Senseo coffee maker and a built-in refrigerator. The bathrooms are equipped with rain showers and include toiletries. These apartments are all-new construction and feature in-floor heating as well as all-new furnishings and appliances to ensure a comfortable stay. The studio apartments feature a large double bed (180 x 200 cm/King size) as well as a double sleeper sofa (140 x 200 cm). The apartments comfortably sleep 2-4 guests.
Coming in spring 2017, we will be adding an additional 3 one-bedroom apartments next-door to these. The construction is coming along well and when it is finished we will have a total of 8 guests apartments.
Both old and new apartments have private entrances with parking just outside. Come and stay with us and enjoy the charming seaside village of Eyrarbakki. Experience the real Iceland, just off the beaten path.
[header type=”h6″] We look forward to welcoming you! [/header]
In 2016, we are adding two new deluxe apartment accommodation types:
Deluxe one-bedroom with sea view (3 apartments)
Deluxe studio with sea view (2 apartments)
The deluxe apartments will feature private decks and hot tubs, sea views, along with kitchenettes, lounge/dining areas, televisions, and bathrooms with rain showers. Like our current one-bedroom apartments, the new apartments will be suitable for up to 4 guests if the sleeper sofa in the living area is used.
The beds in the bedroom will be available either as 2 twin/single beds or 1 king size bed. The living area features a double sleeper sofa suitable for up to 2 guests.
The new apartments aren’t ready yet, but you can see our construction progress on our blog. If you are ready to book your accommodation now, head to our booking page. We currently offer three one-bedroom standard apartments and shared accommodation in our hostel dorms.
We look forward to welcoming more guests to Eyrarbakki in 2016!
We have begun construction on 5 new deluxe sea-view apartments on the east side of the building. There will be 2 studio apartments and 3 one-bedroom apartments, all with private decks and hot tubs. The new apartments will be ready later this year.
We are busy building the apartments and the hot tubs have been ordered and are on their way from California.
Keep checking back—you can keep up with our construction progress right here!