Hverfjall Volcanic Crater | The Breathtaking Huge Crater in North Iceland

Basic Information

Hverfjall Mountain, located in northern Iceland, is a stunning and awe-inspiring natural wonder. This tephra cone, also known as a volcanic crater, stands over 400 meters tall and is one of the largest of its kind in the world. The sheer size and scale of Hverfjall Mountain is sure to leave visitors in awe.

The Hverfjall volcanic crater is created by a brief, but enormous volcanic eruption around 25,000 years ago. Otherwise known as ‘Hverfell’, the crater is a tephra cone, located towards the east of the Mývatn volcanic lake. Hverfjall is a kilometer wide and 140 meters deep crater, creating a captivating form to catch the eye and intrigue visitors, with a shape similar to that of a stadium. The beautiful form was once symmetrical. A landslide is believed to have occurred during the eruption and caused the southern side of the crater to fall. 

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Hiking at Hverfjall

Though the expansive structure of the crater may be intimidating at first sight, it is possible to hike on. Visitors to Hverfjall Mountain can hike to the top for panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. The trail is well marked and takes about 30 minutes to reach the summit. The view from the top is breathtaking and provides a unique perspective of the surrounding area. Visitors can see for miles in every direction and take in the beauty of the surrounding landscape.

There are two paths that are used for hiking – one from the southern side and the other from the northwest. It is strictly forbidden to leave these paths while hiking or to use any other path, due to the fragility and unpredictability of nature.

One path is right next to the parking area, for a shorter hike. It is an easier and steady climb on a wide path for people with a lower level of fitness and those visiting with children. The other is located at Dimmuborgir lava formations found in the Younger Laxa Lava Field nearby. From here, the 45-minute walk to the Hverfjall crater is full of more adventure and mesmerizing views, with a steeper climb to the top. This is for those looking for more of a thrill and definitely for the more experienced hikers!

You can hike up the walls and around the circular structure with ease, commencing with an incremental hill stemming from the car park nearby. The initial walk to the crater from the parking is twenty minutes long. Hiking the diameter of the Hverfjall is easier to do than one may perceive, and takes up to one hour to cover. Walking across, you will be able to enjoy the unique, stunning view of the crater’s interior, with an ashy look that may even feel like a trip to the moon! Once you have hiked to the top, you will also be rewarded with a majestic showcase of the nearby mountains, Lake Mývatn, Dimmuborgir, and the surrounding fields of lava. Safe for children and adults alike, the Hverfjall volcanic crater is one of the largest of its kind in the world!

Hverfjall Mountain is not only a stunning natural wonder but also a testament to the incredible geological activity that has shaped Iceland over the centuries. The mountain was formed from a volcanic eruption over 2,000 years ago, and its size and symmetry are a testament to the explosive power of volcanic activity.

This natural wonder is a must-see for anyone interested in geology, nature, or just breathtaking views. The hike to the summit is relatively easy and the views from the top are truly unforgettable.

How to Get To Hverfjall

Hverfjall is easily accessible. The humungous mass of the crater can just not be missed! We recommend that you add Hverfjall to your itinerary when exploring the Myvatn area and all the other wonders that are found in the region. 

To have a relaxed trip even through all the hiking, make sure you are prepared. A pair of good, comfortable hiking shoes will take you a long way, and warm clothes are always recommended as it can get pretty windy up there. You will find well-maintained bathroom facilities at the parking, adding to the accessibility of the site. 

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Hverfjall on a map

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