The volcano Fagradalsfjall has erupted again! On August 3, 2022, just a few kilometers from Reykjavík International Airport, lava reached the earth’s surface for the first time. The lava eruption reaches a height of up to 100 meters and people can visit it right now!
The eruption of the volcano was accompanied by intense earthquakes. Even with a magnitude of 5.2 on the Richter scale, and as the earthquakes continue, another eruption cannot be ruled out. So far, however, the volcano is not expected to cause restrictions on air travel like in 2010 when volcanic ash from an Icelandic volcano caused the cancellation of more than 100,000 flights over the Atlantic Ocean.
In Iceland, volcanoes erupt on average once every 5 years. Experiencing the actual eruption of a volcano is an experience of a lifetime!
I was lucky enough to be one of the very first people to see this eruption. I was on a hike to the volcano on the exact same day and even at the exact same hour when the eruption itself started! The explosion can be observed from two locations, and I went to see both on the day of the explosion. This is a guide on how you can get to Fagradalsfjall volcano and see the eruption with your own eyes!
Fagradalsfjall is approximately 50 minutes by car from the capital Reykjavík and 30 minutes by car from Keflavík. After parking the car, it is necessary to go to the volcano on foot along the tourist route.
Note: The eruption of a volcano is accompanied by the release of poisonous gases that are deadly. Safety is always the first priority, so always inform yourself about the wind flow and the risks associated with the eruption of the volcano and climbing it before climbing.
How to get to the volcano?
Fagradalsfjall is an area that tourists usually visit and therefore there are 2 tourist routes, marked as A,B (they connect) and C. The problem is that after the explosion in 2021 the lava shook the routes A and B and after the hardened lava is of course it is forbidden to climb. Hardened lava rock can easily break through beneath you, and there is often still hot lava underneath.
Despite such an obstacle, you can get to the volcano along route A,B. However, the route is difficult to traverse. You have to go around the solidified lava field on a stony road, which is approximately 6.5 km from the parking lot. The route is only suitable for fit hikers and having suitable sturdy hiking shoes is essential. When you manage to conquer this route, you will get directly to the spewing lava volcano. The bravest roast sausages over the hot lava and others just enjoy this beautiful natural spectacle.
Route C is much easier than Route A,B. It is 5 km from the parking lot and, depending on your speed, can be walked in 2-3 hours. However, you will not be able to get directly to the volcano. Instead, you’ll stand on a high hill and watch the eruption from afar. The lava is clearly visible from here, and for an even better experience, I recommend taking binoculars with you.
What if I don’t have a car available?
In Iceland, it is always best to rent your own car, as there is very limited public transport. But what to do if you don’t have a car available? Still, there is a possibility. You can order a tour trip from Reykjavík, where a local guide will take you directly to the volcano. The price of such a tour is around 70-150 euros per person.
I personally recommend booking tours through Viator. I traveled with them in Iceland and the advantage is that you can usually cancel the trip 24 hours before the trip. They offer a really wide range of tours.
However, if you prefer hiking without a guide and you have a driver’s license, renting a car will be more worthwhile for you financially.
Another, less strenuous option is a trip with a sightseeing plane or helicopter, which will show you the volcano from a bird’s eye view. The price of such a tour is around 400-1500 euros per person. However, on the first day of the explosion, all sightseeing flights were immediately booked, so if you are really interested in something like this, it is advisable to book a flight in advance.
Whichever mode of transportation you choose, a visit to an active volcano will be one you’ll remember for the rest of your life, and I highly recommend it.
Find out what beautiful places you can visit in Iceland: Iceland-20 places that are like from another world (coming soon)