The Hveravellir Hike, Iceland

If you are looking for a short but stunning hike in the Highlands of Iceland, look no further than the Green Trail in the Hveravellir Geothermal Area. You’ll find plenty of colorful hot springs, fumaroles, and vents. additionally, the whole area is surrounded by the classic beautiful and desolate landscape of Iceland, that type of landscape that makes you feel like you are on another planet.

BLue Geothermal Pool in Hveravellir geothermal Area on a cloudy day

One of the several beautiful hot springs

Despite its remote location, this hike is a must-do for travelers crossing the Highlands, and for good reason – it’s simply a unique and beautiful area.  The Hot Springs and their colors are especially beautiful and this s a place where there is a high concentration of them. So if you are looking to experience the Geothermal beauty of Hveravellir the Green Trail is the one you should hike.

Also, The Hveravellir visitors center also has a small tourist facility that offers accommodation, a restaurant, and a natural hot pool for visitors to relax in. So don’t forget your Swimsuit! You may want to chill a bit in the hot pool after a hike:)!

Hoot pool in Hveravellir in the highlands of Iceland

The Hot Pool in Hveravellir

Table of Contents


Overview of the Hveravellir Green Trail Hike

The green trail, or the Eyvindarrétt Circle, is the shortest hike in Hveravellir. There are two more trails venturing further out into the highlands, the Red and Orange ones which will take approximately 3-5 hours, but the green trail is the one where all the geothermal wonders are. This is also the trail I will describe below.

Max Altitude  665 m
Distance  3.23  KM
Elevation gain  20 ↑ / 20 ↓
Hike time  00:45 / 1:00 Hours
Hike Difficulty  Easy

Old hit in a geotherma Area in the Highlands of Iceland, Hveravellir

The old Hut next to the hot pool.

How to Get to Hveravellir and Parking

This is a remote location along Road 35, the Kjölur route, in the Highlands of Iceland. While this is no longer an F-road technically, it still is a very rough one. If you want to visit, check with your rental company whether you are allowed to drive there in a 2wD or not. If you are looking for car rental options, I can recommend Blue Car Rental for cars and CampEasy for Camper Vans.

  • Driving Directions: There’s only one possible way to get to Hveravellir, and that’s via Road 35 South or North If you are driving along the ring road, it would be best to approach it from the North as the road is in better conditions on that side. The drive takes about 3 hours from Akureyri. if you are sticking to the south coast or the Golden Circle, you can approach Hveravellir from the south. Once you get to Gullfoss, just keep following the road until it turns to dirt. The road is rougher on this side, but more scenic in my opinion.
  • Parking: Ample parking is available at the visitor’s center. To use the facilities and if you want to take a dip in the thermal pool, you would need to pay a small fee.
  • Public Transport: While public transport is not available here, there is a highland bus stopping at this location. It’s ideal if you do not have a car and want to visit some of the highlands.
Hot spring in the highlands of Iceland

The new hut and visitor center, behind a hot spring.

The Green Trail in Hveravellir 

While the green trail is the easiest trail, it’s also the one that offers the most interesting geothermal features. Most of the trail around the hot pools is on boardwalks and fenced. This is done to protect the marvelous and delicate pools from damage. Also, to protect visitors from injuries as the hot pools and fumaroles are scorching hot.

The trail is a loop around the geothermal area, also it can be done both ways and there are a couple of connecting boardwalks in between. After circling around the hot pools, the trail continues into the lava field beyond the geothermal area. Before turning back, the trail passes by Eyvindarhellir (Eyvindur cave), which is where a famous Icelandic outlaw hid in the 18th century. It will also pass by an old, typical Iceland Turf Hut and it will then close the loop reaching the parking area, where the hike ends.

I did the whole hike but then went back to the hot springs for a second round in the geothermal area. I spend a good amount of time taking photos there. That’s how much I liked it.

Fumarole in Hveravellir, Iceland

One of the several Fumaroles

The Hveravellir Hike Photos and Photography tips

This is a great location for an overcast day. Not too difficult to get one in Iceland either. The clouds will help the color of the pools stand out even more. There are plenty of amazing, colorful pools and fumaroles. However, Hveravellir it’s not only that. There are several other interesting compositional elements and photographic opportunities.

The boardwalks are very nicely designed and laid out. They definitely provide a great foreground and leading lines to include in photos. It’s not that often that these types of structures fit well in landscape photos. Also, under the right conditions, the human figures of other visitors can help add a sense of scale to this location. Additionally, there are several small creeks and patches of grass that add to the color and composition of the photos.

Lastly, this is a very flattish area, but the quite often dramatic skies of Iceland can definitely be a big plus to include in your photos.

No drones as this is a protected area. Also, sunset or Bring a polarizer and avoid harsh light. Use the above-mentioned polarizer in case of harsh light :).  The polarizer can really help to reduce the glare or reflections from the pools in case of harsh light.

Green meadow around a geothermal area in Iceland

The whole area is surrounded by a green meadow (in summer) and lava fields

Hveravellir Geothermal Area Hike

One of the many beautiful hot springs in Hveravellir

Fumarole on the Hike in Hveravellir

A fumarole, closeup

Hveravellir huts and campiside

A hot spring with the new visitors center and huts in the background.

Marsh around the geothermal area in Hveravellir on a Sunny day

Marsh around the geothermal area

geothermal river in Hveravellir with a hiker passing by

More of the beautiful marsh around the geothermal area

boardwalk in the Hveravellir geothermal area in the highlands of iceland

The beautifully designed boardwalk makes for an interesting compositional element

Big hot, steaming hot spring in the highlands of iceland

Huge, steaming Hot Spring

Boardwalk above a geothermal area

The boardwalk at the entrance of the geothermal area.


Map of the Hveravellir green trail Hike 

There’s no need for a GPS track if you stick to the green trail. Easy to follow and well marked.

Where to stay

Accommodation is available on-site. It’s possible to camp or to stay either in the new or old hut. The new hut offers private rooms, while the old one offers bunk bed accommodations. You can check the Hveravellir Huts and camping prices here. Alternatively, you can also consider the new Kerligafjöll resort which is about a one-hour drive away from Hveravellir.

Additional Resources

Car or Camper Van Rentals

I can definitely recommend two companies here:

  • Cars: Blue Car Rental, which is the largest Car rental company in Iceland, and for good reasons. Free Cancellation, Unlimited mileage, 24-hour breakdonw assistance, SCDW, CDW, TP, and GP insurance are included in the price. Blue Car Rental is also located within walking distance of the Keflavik Airport, so you can be on your way to explore Iceland right away. I’ve always been happy with my rentals there, which is why I’m happy to recommend their services here on my blog.
  • Camper Vans: CampEasy.With CampEasy, you can rent 2WD or 4×4 campers alike. With a raised Chassis, larger tires, and extra insurance with reduced liability for river crossing, their 4X4 campers are the best choice for your trip into the Highlands. Their Website also provides extensive information about roads you can take and instructions on river crossings. Perfect choice for a hiking holiday in the highlands!

These are my two favorite companies in each respective rental area, which I why I am happy to recommend both here. If you also like this blog, booking through them is a great way to support it. I’ll get a small commission fee at no additional cost, so you can essentially support the running costs of this blog for free too.