Once again, the powerful forces of Mother nature are being displayed in the most amazing way in Iceland as we experience a new volcanic eruption.
Only a year has passed since the last eruption and just like the eruption, in Fagradalsfjall, this one is a natural wonder, worth witnessing.
Is it possible to see the eruption?
The new volcanic eruption is what we in Iceland call a tourist eruption. Meaning it is quite easily accessible and at most times, safe to watch from a reasonable distance.
It is also in a remote area, causing no danger to settlements. This eruption causes no flight risk as it is does not form ash clouds which disrupts air traffic.
Where is the volcano?
Iceland´s newest volcanic eruption is at Meradalir, on Reykjanes peninsula. That is just a few kilometers from Keflavik international airport and Reykjavik.
It´s roughly within the same area as the last eruption in Fagradalsfjall, just a little bit further inland from the old craters. This is highly convenient as visitors can follow the same paths to the new eruption site.
When did the eruption start?
After a few days of earthquakes in late July, the volcanic eruption started on the 3rd of August. This eruption is quite large with lava shooting up from more than a 100 meters long crack.
Since then, the lava has been flowing steadily above ground and according to scientists there is no way of telling how long it will last. It could be days, it could be years.
How do I get to the volcano?
As mentioned, the new eruption is in Meradalir and the best way getting there is by a car. It is only a short drive from Keflavik Airport and about 30 minutes from Reykjavik.
Those looking for the site can start by driving towards the Blue Lagoon, continuing to the town of Grindavik. From there it is only a few minutes’ drive to the East.
Visitors can park at marked parking lots and walk to the eruption. It is about 7 kilometers hike to the site. In total that is 14 kilometers visitors need to walk. The trails to site are marked and we recommend only using them.https://www.map.is/base/@339548,379942,z7,0
Travel tips for volcano visitors
Although the volcano rather easily accessible there are a few things visitors need to consider.
- The best way to the site depends on weather and wind conditions. Please see and follow announcements from authorities about conditions. See here.
- Be well prepared. It takes hours to hike to the eruption. Dress appropriately. Bring outdoors clothes and hiking boots. If hiking after dark bring head lights. Always have your mobile phone fully charged.
- Only leave your rental car at marked parking areas. Do not leave them on the side of the road.
- Be aware of pollution. There is volcanic gas in the area. Stay away from the smoke from the volcano.
- The lava from the last eruption is still hot and dangerous. Do not walk on the lava. Only follow marked trails
Now you should be well prepared for your fiery adventure in Iceland. All that is left to do is pick your rental car and get going!