Eldvörp

Reykjanes Peninsula, Iceland
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Location

Only 10 minutes from Grindavík municipality lies one of Iceland’s largest Holocene lava fields, covering over 20 square kilometres. Eldvörp is a 10-kilometre row of scoria and spatter craters in the middle of that field. Due to geothermal activity beneath the surface, some craters have fumaroles and vents where hot steam escapes, creating a surreal atmosphere with white steam rising from hollows, cracks and the grey, greenish moss. On a cold day, this spectacle is awe-inspiring and magnificent.

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  • Climate

    Climate

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  • Lighting conditions

    Lighting conditions

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  • Accessibility, services and permits

    Accessibility, services and permits

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  • Visitors and risk factors

    Visitors and risk factors

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Accessibility

The road leading to this location is a rough gravel road, 4.5 kilometres long, but suitable for normal cars. It’s a private road, owned and managed by a local energy company that needs to be notified if you travel there. The gravel road leads straight to the most active crater. There is an old trail that leads from the main crater to the others and equipment needs to be carried there as the ground and the moss is very delicate.
Public transportation unavailable
There is no public transportation available in this area
Car recommended
Unchallenging terrain accessible by car
Excellent phone coverage
Great phone coverage without interruptions
Not needed
Guide is not needed

Services nearby

This location is 10 minutes from Grindavík municipality and close to Keflavík, so hotels, gas stations and convenience stores are in abundance. Nearest hospital is also in Keflavík.
Accommodation
< 30 km
Gas station
< 30 km
Hospital or emergency room
< 30 km
Parking
< 1 km
Restaurants
< 30 km
Shopping
< 30 km

Permits

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This location is UNESCO Global Geopark, so a three-way permit is needed to shoot there.
Shooting requires both the permission from the property owner and the local government permit

Basecamp and facilities

The most active crater is literally next to a medium/large size parking lot, made by a local energy company, drilling test holes in search of hot water. One kilometre away, towards the main road, there is another giant parking lot, suitable for large basecamps. No facilities are at this location. Phone coverage is excellent.

Risk factors

The rifts in the earth’s surface emits steam that is hot and can cause serious burns. Some vents might be hotter that others and the heat may vary. The craters are steep, with loose light lava rocks, making it easy to slide down. In some places, the ground is muddy with unseen vents that can open when disturbed so special caution is needed while walking in the area. The trail is moderately difficult, narrow and laced with sharp scoria stones. The moss here is a part of a fragile ecosystem and should be treated with care, always follow paths and trails and avoid stepping onto the moss.

Visitors

The area is a low tourist attraction but those who stop tend to hike through the landscape and stay for a while. The area could be closed off easily with PAs and park rangers. A local tourist company has buggy tours through this area and should be notified.

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