Vík in iceland

vík í Mýrdal 

2023 has been a special Iceland year for me. My wife and I went there in mid February and I ended up returning at the end of July to watch the recent Lili-Hrutur volcano eruption. Vík was high up on our list for both trips. A nice benefit of going there in winter and summer is to see the stark contrast between both seasons. We first visited Vík during a strong winter storm that unleashed not only ferocious winds but which also dumped epic rain on us. The winds were so strong that our hotel was rattling. No kidding. Stepping outside felt like a 360 shower. It was crazy. Contrast that to August – I witnessed balmy 23C with crystal blue skies on two consecutive days. This post is intended to show a few contrasting photographs from both visits and to share two wonderful experiences that are potentially a bit off the beaten track.

Highlight: Hatta

There is ample material on the internets about what to do around the Vík area and I won’t go int that. Let me just highlight two gems that I was able to experience thanks to the perfect weather on my last trip: The first highlight was a trail run to Mt Hatta. This is a mountain/ hill in the backyard of the town. It stands around 500m tall and offers sweeping views across Vík, the volcano Katla and lake Heiðarvatn. The views on a clear day on top of Mt Hatta are not to be missed. The trail up there is super fun and picturesque as well. It leads you through the green meadows above the town and then loops behind the mountain range. The trail itself feels very safe and I was able to run most of it except for a few steeper parts where I felt more comfortable using my hands for additional support. The trail is an 8km long roundtrip from the town center. It took me 1:15h.

The view from the top of Hatta

Cliff run

The second gem are the cliff overlooking the Reynisfjara black sand beach. Most people will have seen images of the iconic cliffs and the black basalt stacks (Reynisdrangar) in the ocean. There is a trail that starts in the center of the town and loops around the entire cliff. I did this early in the morning right around sunrise. It was an amazing experience and I ended up taking a lot of photos up there. Super cool and highly recommend. I did not see a single person up there – keep in mind that this was peak season. The entire loop was 9km with an ascent of 400m. Running the trail took less than an hour.


Without further ado, below is a gallery of photos from the Vík area.

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