Hornstrandir Hiking Adventure

Starting from: Bolungarvik
 1st Jun-31st Aug
 10-12 hours
Difficulty: 3/5 
Minimum age: 13 years old

An unforgettable visit to the pristine and historic Hornstrandir nature reserve, one of Iceland's harshest environments where people lived off the land and sea until the 1950s. Enjoy a thrilling guided hike with our local expert and the mesmerising boat ride to and from Hornstrandir.

Our Plan A is always to reach the Hornvik creek and hike along the magnificent Hornbjarg cliffs.

It is fairly frequently not possible to comfortably access Hornbjarg, due to weather and winds - even when the weather is perfectly fine for accessing and enjoying another part of Hornstrandir. Therefore to ensure that we are able to operate an enjoyable tour as frequently as possible we have two amazing alternative tour plans which our guide and captain can decide to switch to on the day itself:

Plan B - Adalvik to Hesteyri
Plan C - Hesteyri

See all plan descriptions under the Itinerary tab.

Before booking, please make sure to also read the instructions under the Preparation tab to ensure you are properly fit and equipped for this tour!

The tour starts from Bolungarvík harbour, which is just a 10-15 minute drive from Ísafjörður town and about a 20-minute drive from Ísafjörður airport. The boat departs 15 minutes after the scheduled tour starting time. 

Plan A - Hornbjarg circle hike. Requires at least 10 participants and excellent weather & sea conditions.
Guarded on both sides by monumental bird cliffs, the Hornvik creek is Iceland's most remote place, and also one of its most beautiful. Hornbjarg is the larger and more extreme shaped of the two cliffs and boasts of an unrivalled "edge of the world" experience. You will have 4-5 hours for a circle hike along the Hornbjarg cliffs and enjoy the magnificent views. The hiking is of intermediate difficulty on a trail with undulating terrain, from sea level up to about 500 meters altitude and down again to sea level. The cliffs are home to millions of sea birds, and therefore the Arctic fox is never too far away either. The boat ride takes 2.5-3 hours each way. Visiting Hornbjarg is an incredible experience in one of Iceland's remotest and harshest locations.
Plan B - Adalvik to Hesteyri one-way hike. Requires at least 6 participants and good weather & sea conditions.
The hiking route between the abandoned villages of Saebol and Hesteyri offers multiple stunning viewpoints. A view of the northern fjords of Isafjardardjup bay opens up as you ascend up about 300 meters from the beautiful Adalvik creek up to the Slettuheidi mountain pass. As you continue east towards Hesteyri, the view only gets better as you now have most of the jagged Jokulfirdir "glacier fjords" in front of you. The icing on the cake is the picture-perfect Hesteyri village, which greets you towards the end of your hike in it's nestled setting in the sheltered Hesteyrarfjordur fjord. Hesteyri is surrounded by pristine waterfalls, mountains and beaches - believe us that if this was the early 20th century, we would have moved there with you too. The hike takes 5-6 hours and the boat ride about an hour each way - plus 2 extra hours to enjoy the village of Hesteyri after the hike. We know you won't say no to the complementary pancakes at the Doctor's House, and looking out for the Arctic Fox!
Plan C - Hiking around Hesteyri village. Requires at least 2 participants and moderate weather conditions.
There are so many great hiking trails from Hesteyri. Take the lone village road - a gravel construction from the era of the last residents - to the Kagrafell mountain (500m) for a top view over Hesteyrarfjordur and the rest of Jokulfirdir. Hike further onto the Mannfjall mountain for a splendid panoramic view over Adalvik creek. Other options include hiking along the coastline towards Slettuheidi, for the signature view over Jokulfirdir and Isafjardardjup; crossing the river and hiking to the old whaling station at the bottom of the fjord; leisurely strolling along the pristine black sand beach of Hesteyri, visiting the site of the former church that got taken away; and finally looking out for the Arctic Fox! And of course, we hope you enjoy your complementary pancakes and the historic setting at the Doctor's House. We will spend 7-8 hours in and around Hesteyri and the boat ride takes about an hour each way.


- Boat return transportation, in covered passenger ferry
- Local expert hiking guide

To bring:

- Warm and wind/waterproof clothes
- Solid hiking boots
- Gloves and cap
- Water bottle
- Lunch pack if you don't book one

It is crucial that you bring self-arranged food and drinks for the entire trip, and wear proper hiking shoes and warm hiking appropriate wear. Particularly for Hornbjarg, which is open to Arctic winds. Other than Hesteyri in plan B and C, there is no temporary shelter available, and it is not possible to buy food anywhere on the tour.

The trail requires at least basic hiking experience and good fitness.
On a windy day the boat ride can be bumpy.

We reserve the right to deny boarding to insufficiently prepared participants, whether without food or without proper clothing, for safety reasons.