Tour 16 – The Valleys of Borgarfjördur
6 days riding
Between Western Valleys and Thermal Pools
The fertile district Borgarfjördur in south western Iceland is known for some of Iceland´s most beautiful natural sights, an abundance of hot water from geothermal sources and as the setting of many Icelandic sagas. Starting in the town Borgarnes, we ride on good trails in diverse landscape, often crossing rivers and riding along soft river banks. We experience riding in Húsafell forest and on mountain paths between green valleys with stunning views of the surrounding countryside, mighty rivers and glaciers. We visit the famous waterfalls Hraunfossar at the edge of a vast lava field and at the old homestead Reykholt. Borgarfjördur offers many top-notch swimming pools, allowing us to go for a swim every evening. We stay at the Community Center Logaland in the picturesque valley Reykholtsdalur during the whole tour, so instead of having to pack every morning we drive short distances to the horses. We take a herd of free running horses with us during this tour.
Duration: 7 days and 6 nights. 6 days on horseback.
Riding distance: Ca. 177 km, 25-38 km per day (5-8 hours).
Accommodation & Meals: 1 night in guesthouse (2-4 bed rooms with shared facilities), 5 nights sleeping bag accommodation in the Community Center Logaland. Full board (traditional Icelandic home cooking, special meals on request).
Departure 2019: June 17.
Please note: The last night of accommodation in Reykjavík will not be included in our shorter-, longer- and wilderness tours in summer 2019.
Day by day description
The Valleys of Borgarfjördur
Day 1: Arrival
The tour starts in the evening. Tour members who arrive the same day to Iceland should take the shuttle bus Flybus (www.flybus.is) from the airport to the final bus station BSÍ in Reykjavík. We will greet you at the bus station or at your hotel/ guesthouse in Reykjavik between 17.30- 18.00 and drive you to our farm Vellir near the village Hveragerði. We will get to know each other during the dinner at Hotel Eldhestar and meet for a detailed description of the tour after dinner. You will spend the night at Guesthouse Eldhestar.
Day 2: Borgarnes – Midfossar Falls
The bus takes us to Borgarnes in West Iceland, where we start riding from the stables just outside the town on good riding trails. We have a beautiful view of the countryside of Borgarfjördur as we continue across a bridge, named Ferjubakkabrú. We pass by the Agricultural University of Iceland in Hvanneyri. This is where a famous stallion, Ófeigur from Hvanneyri 818, was born. We then ride toward Midfossar Falls. From there, we have an unobstructed view of all Borgarfjördur, weather permitting. After the day’s ride, we will go for a swim in Hreppslaug Pool. It was built in 1928. From there, we will drive to the Community Centre Logaland, where we will have plenty of room for everyone. We will stay at Logaland for the next 5 nights. 25 km.
Day 3: Midfossar Falls – Logaland
We start from Midfossar Falls and ride along Mt. Hestfjall, past Hestur Farm in Borgarfjördur. This farm is a famous homestead in Iceland and one of the agricultural research farms. We ride across Grímsá River and along its banks. From there we ride along the sands and banks of Reykjadalsá River. We continue into Reykholtsdalur Valley and through the village of Kleppjárnsstadir and to Logaland. From there it is a 5-minute drive to Kleppjárnslaug Pool and its good hot pots and steam bath. 36 km.
Day 4: Logaland – Húsafell
We ride out from Logaland into Reykholtsdalur Valley. We are on a good gravel road at first. Later, we are on a very beautiful riding path along the banks of Reykjadalsá River. We will cross this river about 10 times. We then ride along old and good riding trails to Húsafell. We go through Húsafell Forest. This is about a 1-hour ride. We dismount at Húsafell Swimming Pool. It is the most popular swimming pool in the area. It has two hot pots and a water slide. After our swim, we drive to Logaland. 34 km.
Day 5: Kalmarstunga – Húsafell
We drive to Kalmarstunga and ride around Strútur Mountain. The ride takes 4-5 hr. We then ride to Húsafell Forest and through it to the old Húsafell Farm. There, we will keep the horses. We will then drive back to Húsafell Swimming Pool. After a refreshing swim, we will drive to the picturesque Hraunfossar Waterfalls and from there to Reykholt in Reykholtsdalur valley. Reykholt is cultural centre past and present, a farm with a church and rectory and an one of Iceland´s main historic sites as it was the homestead of Snorri Sturluson, a famous medieval historian, politician and chieftain. We will look around this location, and you will have a chance to go to the museum and church. 30 km
Day 6: Húsafell – Flókadalur
We will ride the same trail as on Day 3, except we will experience the view and beauty of Borgarfjördur differently. Later, we will ride past Kópareykir. From there, we will ride over Brennistadaháls Ridge. From there, we will enjoy a unique view across Reykholtsdalur Valley and West Iceland. When we go down that side, we will see across Flókadalur Valley. We will leave the horses behind at Brennistadir and drive to the nearest swimming pool, the one at Kleppjárnsstadir, or another pool. We will overnight at Logaland, as usual. 28 km.
Day 7: Brennistadir in Flókadalur – Borgarfjardarbraut – Departure
We ride down into Flókadalur Valley along the river (Flókadalsá, often called Flóka). There a good riding trail and the beautiful and grassy landscape will stir the emotions we experience when riding along a beautiful river like Flóka. We will then ride through the Varmalaekar countryside and past Varmalaekjarmúli, a hill that is 350 m high. The riding trail is good, and it is a thrill for Eldhestar’s guests to ride their favourite horses on the last day of the tour. The herd of horses will not follow since we may not take free running horses along Flóka River. We then load the horses into trailers and take the bus to Reykjavik, where it is time to say farewell to your tour companions and guides. 24 km.