When you think of Iceland, Reykjavik as the capital of the island inevitably comes to mind, as well as black sand beaches in the south of Iceland, waterfalls, and geysers along the country's famous Ring Road. But hardly any tourists know about the beauty of the rather unknown side of the land of ice and fire - Iceland's east, also called "Austurland". 

Now we want to share the highlights of East Iceland with you because here there’s something for everyone - no matter whether hiking, relaxing, swimming, or doing sports is on the agenda!

©Business IcelandEast Iceland is especially known for its wild waterfalls. Some of the waterfalls can be explored easily on foot, as they are connected by hiking paths.

If you are really into hiking, Iceland's largest forest, Hallormsstaðaskógur, is worth a visit. Here, you can choose from a variety of different hiking trails, depending on your physical condition, and enjoy nature. ©Hermann Helguson

Puffin lovers will be in their element at Borgarfjörður Eystri, where you can admire the famous puffin colonies. Don't miss this trip to the coast of East Iceland and take the time to stroll along one of the island's black or white beaches!

©Hermann HelgusonA must-see and another highlight of Iceland's east is Stuðlagil Canyon. The famous canyon is located in the Jökuldalur valley. Here it was completely uncovered in 2007 after the Kárahnjúkar hydroelectric power plant went into operation, and the water level of the river Jökla dropped. Thanks to the exposure, one can now admire impressive 20-30m high basalt formations. Turquoise water flows between the enormous basalt columns most of the time, making the sight of the 500m-long canyon even more beautiful. 

If you visit Iceland, you will definitely enjoy various geothermal baths. These are not only part of Icelandic culture, but also beneficial to health and simply relaxing
©Vök Baths
Probably the most extraordinary geothermal bath in East Iceland is Vök Baths, which opened in 2019. Here you can enjoy a spectacular view from one of the infinity pools floating on Lake Urriðavatn. In addition, there are two on-shore hot pools, a sauna, a cold water spray tunnel, a tea bar, an in-water pool bar, and an on-site restaurant, Vök Bistro.

But the unique natural pool Laugavalladalur is also definitely worth a visit! The special feature: Visitors can bathe directly in nature in a geothermal stream or shower under a warm waterfall! You don't have to pay attention to the hot water bill here. ;-) But beware: in some places the water is extremely hot, so children should never be left unattended. The "green oasis" is located west of the river Jökulsá á Dal, near an abandoned farm.

©Business IcelandLast but not least, the heart of the East has to be mentioned: Egilsstaðir. It is the largest town in the region and from here you can easily set off on numerous hiking tours, sightseeing trips, and natural wonders. You can get to the city via Egilsstaðir Airport (EGS). Guests can fly daily from Reykjavik to Egilsstaðir in about an hour, all year round, saving about eight hours of driving. 

In addition to the highlights of the East, take a look at many other sights in Iceland. Interested in a self-drive tour through the east of Iceland? Contact us - we are happy to help you plan your trip! You can also choose from a variety of great excursions in East Iceland and book them directly with us (incl. the entrance to Vök Baths).