Continuing our series of Icelandic blog posts, here we go into one of the most incredible features of the island, and that is the many geothermal hotspots. I'm going to show two main areas here, but there are many, many more due to Iceland being on a fault line.
Hotspots, springs and geothermal areas are dotted across Iceland, and can come and go without warning. People in the town of Hveragerdi have hot springs in their back gardens, some even spring up under their houses!
This geothermal activity allows the Icelanders to harness it's power to their own ends. Not just geothermal power plants but also personal bore holes to heat individual houses. There's a reason Iceland is now of the least polluted places on the planet, and that's from the lack of anything (except cars) that burns fuel. For visitors this offers two notable treats, one being the super clean air which feels fresh and great when out for a hike, the other is the visibility. Almost no haze allows you to see for miles, great for photography and embracing the island itself.
Below are two maps to the areas I've been to. These are the Geysir Park on the golden circle tour, and Krýsuvík in the Reykjanes peninsula. Both are fairly easy to get to and have parking, they used to be free but the Geysir park now charges for entry (600ISK, about £5). Be prepared to have your breath taken away, especially at Krýsuvík as the air is a mix of methane, sulfur and chlorine. It does feel a bit like you're being poisoned, but don't worry it's harmless in small doses.
As the signs say these areas are prone to eruptions and explosions, this also means they won't be here forever. Famously the main Geysir at the park (from where all Geysers get their name) stopped erupting some years ago due to underground geothermal shift.
So see them while you can, especially 'Little Geysir' at the park as it's spectacular. Erupting about every 10 minutes, eventually it will stop.
If you have been to Iceland then get in touch!