The Lava Field of Berserkjahraun Iceland was of my favorite places to visit in the Snaefellsnes peninsula. Is is a bit off the beaten track but an easy drive through between interestingly-shaped mountains. Here are some of my pictures of the amazing landscapes and information on how to get there.
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Why Visit the Berserkjahraun Lava Field?
Berserkjahraun (which translate to mad-man’s lava field), is a path on the Northern part of the Snaefellsnes peninsula that deviates into lava fields from the main road circling it. It is a place where you can observe green moss over black lava stones that vary greatly in size; all that surrounded by pyramid-shaped mountains and fjords. It is also the home of a famous saga.
I drove one morning the whole road and enjoyed crossing path with very few vehicles, feeling alone in the place discovering the shapes and the contrasting colors along the way. The next day I had better weather and decided to drive part of the road again (as I was limited in time) to see it with different light. So you see how much I enjoyed it
PLANNING TIPS - Berserkjahraun Iceland
Getting to Berserkjahraun Iceland
- Coming from the West on road 54 from Grundarfjordur, cross the first bridge, then turn right on road 558 also called Beserjkjahraun. After crossing a small bridge continue to a crossing and turn right.
- Coming from the East just after the crossing of Roads 56 (Vatnaleid) and 54 (Snaefellsnesvegur), turn left into Beserkjahraun
- You can also check out my map of Snaefellsnes with places to visit to locate this road
- GPS coordinates of the path are available in the eBook Travel Guide I wrote to help you plan your trip: Experience Iceland
Berserkjahraun, along with many other beautiful places, is included in my eBook: The Road Trip Guide - Iceland.
It is a practical tool to plan your trip with maps, photos, planning tips, GPS coordinates...
- It is very easy to reach but most people just tour Snaefellsnes and do not venture into those paths. You get the place almost to yourself! (at least until everybody read this article 🙂 )
- Early morning you will get nice reflections around the bridge
- The road is not paved but not difficult, you just have to drive slowly but with this scenery, who would want to drive fast? Crossing other vehicles is not a problem
- I think I drove on it for 2 & 1/2 hours stopping all the time
- I drove it with a Suzuki Jimmy 4WD rented from Route 1 car rental and it was perfect! Check out their rental offers.
The geology story behind of the lava field
This lava field stretches between the mountain side and the sea.
Four prominent craters probably erupted at short intervals approximately 3600-4000 years ago, the largest one first and the smallest last. The lava flows created two lakes in the South.
Below are some photos of the area around the Lakes. On one side, not much lava but on the other, the water is surrounded by huge blocks.
Photos from the Berserkjahraun drive
Starting with my favorite shot of Berserkjahraun with the pyramid- shaped mountains behind. You really want to check if any elves or trolls live there. Don't you?
Sometimes the green of the moss does not even look real!
And just unbelievable scenery everywhere:
In the photo below you can see a bit more of the mountains surrounding Berserkjaraun Iceland :
And sometimes the rock is really red!
Do you see why it made to my Top 7 off the beaten path destinations in Iceland ?
The Saga behind the lava field of Berserkjahraun
Here is a short version of the Eyrbyggja saga behind the name of this lava field:
A 10th century farmer had brought two Swedish berserkers. Since he had problems handling the two he gave them to his brother Styr the Slayer , who was living on the other side of the lava field.
After a while one of the berserkers fell in love with his daughter and asked for her hand. Víga-Styrr promised to agree only if the berserkers cleared a path through the lava field to connect his farm with the nearest settlement. The two soon finished what Víga-Styrr thought was impossible, but instead of keeping his promise he murdered them both and buried them somewhere along the path.
Want to see more of Iceland's beauty?
Discover more things to do and places to see in Iceland in my online Iceland Destination Guide.