Reykjadalur Swimming Spot
Swim in a hot river
- Season: June–November
- Difficulty: Medium
- Distance: 7 kilometers (out‑and‑back)
- Elevation Gain: 260 meters
- Duration: 3–6 hours
Hiking to the Reykjadalur Hot Springs is one of the best hikes near Reykjavik. It is certainly not a hidden gem anymore but despite lots of other tourists here, you should not skip this hike to the Reykjadalur Hot Springs, which is more of a river! You can decide how warm you want the water as more and colder water blends in and gives you the option to go from anywhere from 40°C and down to 10-15°C.
This hike starts from close to Hveragerði along route 1. The drive from Reykjavik takes about 35 minutes. Just make sure you follow route 1 eastbound along the south coast towards Selfoss. As you drive down the hills towards Hveragerði you will see Reykjadalur on your left side. At the bottom of the hill, you will soon drive into a round-a-bout where you should turn left into Hveragerði itself. Follow this road through the town until you see a football field on your left-hand side. Take the road to the left and follow this all the way to the parking lot.
From the parking lot, follow the trail that starts climbing up the hill. Already right after leaving the trailhead, you will encounter smoke and hot creeks running down the mountain. The trail continues up the mountain for a while and you eventually lose sight of the parking lot. Continue up a bit more and soon you will reach the top and see the trail that takes you into the Reykjadalur valley. You will also see smoke coming out from the valley, this is where the hot river is situated as well.
Continue down into the valley and cross the river before hiking the last part of the trail. Just before you reach the hot river there are some great mud pools where hot mud and water is boiling up to the surface.
- Free parking. The parking lot is often full in the summertime, but you can safely park your car along the road as well.
- Toilets at the parking lot
- There are some simple changing facilities by the river.
By Espen Oldeman Lund
Outtt developer and hiking enthusiast
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