The Highlands, the uninhabited interior of Iceland is among the very few relatively easily accessible such areas left in the world. Its border is roughly drawn along the 400 m elevation and within that frame we have about 80% of the total area of the country. It consist mainly of moraines, sanded areas, lava fields, lakes and glaciers. The green pearls or the vegetated oases are only to be found where there is sufficient water.
The landscapes are very varied and beautiful. It is recommended to use 4wd vehicles because of the various and changing condition of the tracks and unbridged rivers, which have to be forded with the greatest of care. It is also recommended that people read the special brochure on driving in the interior before heading up there and remember, that off road driving is strictly prohibited! Many of those who visit the interior catch the bug and the only remedy is to revisit regularly.
Travelling across the interior was common during the Saga period, but after that up to the middle of the 18th century, superstition kept people away. Nowadays an increasing number of people enjoy this part of the country the whole year round.
During summer you can drive across the interior of Iceland, the Kjolur route, or the Sprengisandur route (4×4 only). Gaesavavotn route (4×4 only) is so rugged that the average speed hardly exceeds 10 km/hour. Before setting off on the Highland routes, check the road conditions and remember that there are unbridged rivers to be forded.
One of the most visited pearls are Landmannalaugar, one of the most beautiful and colorful regions in the picturesque highlands of Iceland. Then there is Thormork, the country’s most magnificent landscapes in one place.
How to enter The uninhabited interior of Iceland
Only Kjolur Route and Sprengisandur Route crossing north to south or south to north
Before setting off on the Highland routes, check the road conditions and remember that there are unbridged rivers to be forded!!!
Main Photo Credit: Sundlaugar.is