– This is absolutely my favorite day tour…
What is Askja and where is it?
Askja is a caldera located in the center highland of Iceland, in the mountains Dyngjufjöll. Inside the caldera is a deep lake, and a crater with geothermal water. It is sometimes suitable to bathe in it although the path down to the crater is often impassable due to how steep it is.
The trip itself to the Caldera is through the biggest desert of Iceland, called Ódáðahraun, along the glacier river Jökulsá á Fjöllum.
The tour starts early in the morning since normally the tours to Askja are about 12 hours long. Pickup is on request, most often from the guesthouses and hotels in the Laugar area, or Mývatn area. From Laugar we drive along Lake Mývatn and head to the east through lava fields. At the crater Hrossaborg, we make our turn to the south on the gravel road F88. We will cross rivers on the way, fords, and the river Grafarlandaá is the first one. There we take our first stop on enjoy the pureness and beauty of the this spring fed river that comes from under the Lava field and forms a small waterfall where the ford is.
After that our tour leads us through lava fields with great contrasts until we reach the ford at river Lindaá, another spring fed river. Next stop is the nature reserve Herðubreiðarlindir oasis (nearby mt. Herðubreið). Here we take another stop where my guests can use the washrooms (toilets) and take a look at the special nature of this place. In Herðurbreiðarlindir, I guide my guests in a walk through the place and take you the the location where our most famous outlaw hid during the winter of 1774-1775.
Next on our way is the magnificent place and waterfall called Gljúfrasmiður, a waterfall in the glacier river Jökulsá fjöllum. It has shaped the landscape over time into forms that are hard to imagine.
We then head to Dyngjufjöll, where the Askja caldera is, but first we stop at Dreki hut to have lunch (there are no shops in the highland so please bring a lunch with you). After our lunch, we drive to Vikraborgir craters where we start our 2,4km walk to the crater Víti and the Lake of Askja. Vikraborgir are the craters where the NASA Apollo mission astronauts’ training took place in 1965 and 1967.
Since 2014 I’ve made over 100 trips to Askja, and it always brings me great joy and happiness to be able to show this unique area to my guests. The summer 2015 I went more than 30 times and was still going until the first snowstorm of the winter closed the highland roads to Askja. Normally the highland roads open in the end of June, in some years around middle of June. The road to Askja is now open! (June 18th 2019).
Tour price: ISK 155.000,- (Approx. $1277 USD March 2019) for private tour with maximum of 6 passengers. (It’s total for your group or couples, not per person) – Only available as a private tour – The tours are available daily on request, reservation required.
- Departures are optional: Pick up at your selected location near Laugar, or the Mývatn area.
- Departure time is on request but I prefer not later than 7:45am since the duration of the tour is is normally around 12 hours.
- Included is fully guided tour and transportation.
- Refreshments are not included in price. Please note that there are no shops in the highlands so please bring a lunch package and drinking water along with warm clothes and hiking boots.
Private tours can be tailor made in any way. For more information and booking, please contact me with email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Here below are some example pictures from my tours to Askja.
Here below is an very Interesting Youtube episode of an Icelandic TV show that shows images from Askja. It’s in Icelandic language but the images speak for themselves:
Here another episode from the same area: