Krýsuvík Geothermal Area
The wooden walkway, which is the only safe approach to the bubbling and hissing geothermal area, is being replaced, so the area will be closed entirely during construction. The steaming volcanic vents and boiling hot springs alone call for hiking trails to be constantly repaired as there is a lot of wear and tear. During construction, a gravel top dressing will be added to pathways as conditions allow. The project is being carried out with a grant from the Tourist Site Protection Fund for the continued development of the area, which is considered urgent due to safety and nature conservation considerations. All visitors are thanked for their patience during the construction and are referred to numerous other interesting places in Hafnarfjörður at www.visithafnarfjordur.is or destinations in Reykjanes at www.visitreykjanes.is.
Not too far from the centre of Hafnarfjörður rest the remarkable solfatara fields of Krýsuvík, where you’ll discover an expanse of steaming volcanic vents and boiling hot springs, framed dramatically by a range of multi-coloured hills.
A well-maintained boardwalk winds through the bubbling and hissing Seltún geothermal area, with informative signage explaining all the important geological facts. The massive solfatara steaming away on the hilltop is a tempting attraction, even for those with tired legs, and the spectacular view of the surrounding area is well worth the extra legwork. As a short side-trip, you can also explore the coastline, where you’ll discover the stunning cliffs of Krýsuvíkurbjarg—an area renowned for its rich birdlife.
You'll find wildly colourful crater lakes beside the mud pools and sulphur deposits. The Grænavatn, Gestsstaðavatn, and Augun lakes are old explosion craters formed by volcanic eruptions. Grænavatn Lake, 46 meters (150 feet) at its deepest, glows with a deep green hue and is coloured so because of the presence of thermal algae and crystals that absorb the sun's rays. Gestsstaðavatn Lake draws its name from Gestsstaðir, a nearby farm, abandoned during the Middle Ages. On either side of the main road are two small adjacent lakes, called Augun (the eyes).
Just a few minutes' drive from the surreal landscape of the geothermal area sits the stunning Krýsuvíkurberg Cliffs. Here, thousands of seabirds nest in the rugged hillside beside the crashing surf of the Atlantic Ocean. For a peaceful outing, hike along the trail to the edge of the cliffs where it's possible to spot kittiwakes, guillemots, razorbills, and other birds as they dive into the sea to feed or frolic with their flock.
Contact the Hafnarfjörður Tourist Information Centre for a detailed map of the Krýsuvík area, including hiking and walking routes and information on local history, geology, folklore and attractions.
Hafnarfjörður has located about 18 km from the city centre of Reykjavík.