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Parts of the Highland Circle route aren’t open and accessible in spring. F-roads and other highland roads without winter service close as the snow arrives, and only reopen in summer. Check up-to-date road conditions on road.is.

Never fear! In spring, the circuit can be adapted and combined with the excellent, year-round Ring of Riverdale route to guide you to some traveler favorites.

Winters can be long in Iceland, so when spring rolls in, it breathes new life into the nature. It’s a lovely time to tour Austurland, to enjoy the slow transformation from winter wonderland to green summertime landscapes. You’ll no doubt experience weather conditions from all seasons, so it’s best to be prepared and to pay close attention to weather and road conditions.

As you travel the shores of Lagarfljót lake, you can see the trees of Hallormsstaður National Forest begin to bud and the wildflowers bloom as the weather warms up and the days lengthen. Widespread lupines begin to flower, giving a purple hue to many scenes. The lambing season begins in May, and the birdlife gets active!

After a winter hiatus, many of the route’s attractions reopen for the season. Check out the opening hours of places like Vallanes and Klausturkaffi café, perfect for sampling the homegrown local produce.

You’ll no doubt want to explore the nature – but be aware that walking and hiking paths can be muddy thanks to snow melting, so be prepared! Explore the trails of Hallormsstaður forest or climb the scenic path to Hengifoss waterfall.

From Hengifoss it’s a short trip to Snæfellstofa Visitor Center, for displays on the region’s natural wonders, and to Skriðuklaustur cultural center. Continue deeper into the valley to reach the unique Wilderness Center, to enjoy a hands-on experience of Icelandic history and hear the stories of Icelanders at the edge of the highlands.

Return to Egilsstaðir via Lagarfljót’s western shore, and treat yourself to a warming geothermal soak at the stunning Vök Baths on the route back.

To visit Stuðlagil canyon in spring, your best plan is to take Rte 923 from Hwy 1. The turn-off to Rte 923 is 52km (32 miles) west of Egilsstaðir. Rte 923 can usually be traveled in a regular car (no 4x4 required), but it’s worth checking up-to-date conditions for the route on road.is.

You may not have time to see everything we include on this travel route. We recommend you plan your trip using the 'Add to favorites' tool on our page. By bookmarking your favorite attractions and experiences in this way, you can tailor a route through Austurland that's perfect for you!

 

Places to Visit

Activities

Hús Handanna Icelandic Art & Design Shop
Egilsstaðir Swimming pool
Sláturhúsið
East Highlanders
Arboretum in Hallormsstaðar Forest
Snæfellsstofa Visitor Centre, Skriðuklaustur
Skriðuklaustur, Centre of culture & history
Wilderness center
Waterfall Circle
Laugarfell
Turf Houses by Hjarðarhagi
Vök Baths

Other (1)

Sænautasel Jökuldalsheiði 701 Egilsstaðir 853-6491

Restaurants

Other (3)

N1 - Service Station Egilsstaðir Kaupvangur 4 700 Egilsstaðir 440-1450
Bókakaffi Hlöðum - By Lagarfljót Bridge Hlaðir 700 Egilsstaðir 471-2255
Olis - Service Station Búðareyri 33 730 Reyðarfjörður 474-1147

Accommodation

Guesthouse Vínland
Skipalækur
Hótel Valaskjálf
Icelandair Hotel Herad
Teahouse
Gistihúsið - Lake Hotel Egilsstaðir
Egilsstaðir Campsite
Hotel 1001 nott
Hotel Hallormsstadur
Hengifoss Guesthouse
Wilderness center
Á Hreindýraslóðum

Other (1)

Lyngás Guesthouse - Egilsstaðir Lyngás 5-7 700 Egilsstaðir 4711310