Via the mountain roads Kjölur and Sprengisandur, the untouched wilderness of Iceland's mountainous centre is now open to the general public—for cautious exploration by foot or 4x4 vehicles—in the summer months.
Surrounded by obsidian and colorful rhyolite mountains, visitors can bathe in natural hot rivers in the geothermal area of Landmannalaugar. From there, the Laugavegur trail leads to the woodland nature reserve Þórsmörk—a hidden valley surrounded by mountains, glaciers and glacial rivers—that serves as a popular base camp for hikers who intend to reach the surrounding highland mountains.
The highlands of Iceland are an untamed mingling of rocky deserts, jagged peaks, volcanoes, ice caps, valleys, and hot springs, that should be explored at all times with respect, care and preparatory measures.
Amazing natural resources.
In the centre of Iceland, on a mountain road called Kjalvegur, there is a unspoiled and protected area called Hveravellir (hot spring plains).
Kjalvegur usually opens in the middle of June and it remains open until September or October, but it depends on the weather.
Hveravellir is one of the many amazing natural resources in Iceland. Its positioned between two glaciers, Langjökull and Hofsjökull. The hot spring area, natural hot pool, glaciers and magnificiant view are the main attractions.
At Hveravellir there are both steam and water hot springs.
This pearl of the interior is situated in a valley between colourful mountains at the dark edge of the rhyolite lava field Laugahraun. Many hot and cold springs create a bathing warm brook, where people bathe. The surroundings of L. are toocolourful and magnificent to describe with words. The mountains are split with gullies and gorges, one of which, the Jokulgil, is about 13 km long.
It is possible to hike all the way to its end, when the river is not swollen, and there are several other hiking possibilities in the area. Landmannalaugar is also the starting point for those, who want to hike to the Thorsmork area in the south. It is easy to walk there in three days, but many prefer to spend more time enroute to be able to enjoy the trip to the utmost. Landmannalaugar is a part of a larger nature reserve.
Situated in the Highlands of Iceland you find the Kerlingafjöll (1477m), near the Kjölur highland road. During a volcanic eruption in ice age Kerlingafjöll were formed. It is thought that the area might still be active but is has not erupted in the present time.
Kerlingafjöll is one of the most powerful hot spring area in the country with geysers of clay and is the center system of volcanoes that is over 100 km². The volcanic rhyolite stone gives the earth a shimmering red colour and the minerals that have emerged from the hot springs in the area also colour the ground with red, green and yellow.
The glaciers streams reach down into Þórsmörk and the geysers melts the ice and creates impressive arches, caves and ice rocks all mixed into the colours of the landscape makes this a unique and a extremely beautiful place to see.
Hvítárvatn (also known as Hvítárlón) is a lake in the Highlands of Iceland and the source of glacial river Hvítá. It is located 45 km northeast of Gullfoss. Its surface is about 30 km²; its greatest depth is 84 m. Lake Hvitarvatn has an area of 29,4 km². Its greatest depth is 84 m and it is situated 421 m above sea level at the eastern edge of the country's second largest glacier, Langjokull, in the central highlands. Its discharge is the glacial river Hvita, which contains the famous Golden Waterfalls. One of three main roads crossing the central highlands, The Kjalvegur route (F37), passes to the south and east of the lake and it is accessible from that road in two places. On lake Hvitarvatn you can expect one of the most spectacular sceneries in the country on a fine day.
Lake Hagavatn has an area of about 1,3 km², its greatest depth is 8 m and it lies 19 m above sea level. Its discharge is River Stadara. Hagafellsjökullis an outlet glacier of the Langjökull ice cap in West-Central Iceland. This surge-type glacier is 7 km long from the terminus to the headwall and up to 6 km wide. The front of the glacier feeds into Hagavatn, a proglacial lake with an elevation of 435 m and an area of 5 km². Currently Hagavatn drains through Nyifoss, a col in the volcanic rocks in the southeast corner of the lake. In the past, this lake has drained through Leynifoss as well, 1.5 km west of Nyifoss. East of the lake is the Jarlhettur subglacial basalt ridge.