The Best Things to Do in Hofn, Iceland
Hofn, Iceland (Höfn means ‘harbor,’) is a quaint village with nearly 2000 residents situated on the shores of Hornafjörður in the southeast portion of the country.
Known for its delectable lobster, gorgeous coastal views, and Europe’s largest glacier, visiting Hofn is like stepping into a postcard. This guide is here to ensure you find the best things to do in Hofn, Iceland.
Where is Hofn?
You can reach the village by driving from Reykjavik to Hofn on the Ring Road (Route 1) along the Southern coast.
This pleasant drive will bring you past Hornafjördur fjord, which translates to the “Fjord of Horns.”
Hofn can be reached year-round via a 4×4 vehicle. While a 4×4 isn’t always necessary, it’s recommended since the village is located on a peninsula surrounded by freezing waters on three sides.
This can make road conditions tough to traverse with two-wheel drive vehicles. However, if you’re not comfortable with that drive, Hofn can be reached by plane on clear days. It’s one of the few areas in the country that has a domestic airport.
For those who want to venture to the capital, the journey from Hofn to Reykjavik will take around six hours to cover the 450 kilometers (280 miles) distance.
The distance between Reykjavik to Höfn is around six hours of straight driving.
If you plan to continue northeast, then the route from Hofn to Egilsstaðir will take an additional three hours, but along the way, you’ll be rewarded with beautiful views. You may also have a chance to spy on some sheep and reindeer.
Why You Should Visit Hofn, Iceland
Even if you weren’t actively searching for things to do in Hofn, Iceland, it’s still a frequent stop for those cruising along the Ring Road.
If you plan on exploring the South Coast or East Fjords, you can easily find a place to rest your head at a Hofn hostel or a hotel. Hofn serves as a fantastic starting point to see Vatnajökull National Park, the Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon, and Diamond Beach.
However, if you find yourself in the village, you should carve time out of your itinerary to visit Hofn restaurants.
Being a coastal town, you would be right to expect fresh seafood cuisine, emphasizing lobster. The allure of Hofn is amplified during the annual Lobster Festival held in July.
Nature lovers will be delighted to know that Hofn camping adventures are plentiful and easy to access. The town can be your base camp before your party sets out on a trail to many beautiful campsites.
4 Incredible Things to Do in Hofn, Iceland
With the local economy of Hofn fitting the profile of a small fishing village, tourism is one of their critical industries. Here are four fabulous things to do in Hofn, Iceland.
Explore Europe’s Biggest Glacier
Hofn is a waypoint en route to Europe’s largest national park, Vatnajökull National Park. This park is home to Europe’s biggest glacier—the Vatnajökull glacier—which spans 3,200 square miles and covers three-fifths of the national park.
While taking pictures of this natural wonder from afar is perfectly acceptable, the more adventurous will seek an exhilarating glacier walk.
It’s recommended to use a guide since specialist equipment is necessary to navigate around the mass of ice. If you want to turn the excitement up a notch, you can turn your glacier walk into an ice climb, making your vacation an adrenaline trip.
Delve into the Ice Caves
The Vatnajökull glacier also provides a unique, once-in-a-lifetime experience thanks to its ever-changing, temporal ice caves. With the aid of a guide, you can spelunk into a world of ice.
Discover Why Iceland is the Land of Fire and Ice
Nothing is more impressive than witnessing the power of nature mix in the form of glaciers and volcanoes. To see the true majesty of Iceland, Hofn is the gateway.
Vatnajökull National Park is home to Öraefajökull, a 6,500-foot high volcano shrouded by the imposing glacier. If you choose to climb into one of the ice caves, you can even find yourself wading below the Katla volcano, creating a truly mesmerizing experience.
See the Sights in the Town of Hofn
While you may be thinking of Hofn as a temporary resting point, you owe it to yourself to explore it. The town is proud of its rich culture and heritage, with many museums and art exhibits to satiate any world traveler.
The best travel stories aren’t set at the major tourist sites. They happen at an exotic food stall, a quaint locals-only pub, or a unique cultural experience hot bath.
Well, not just any hot bath. Hot spring baths and outdoor baths are set against breathtaking scenery. Don’t miss out on experiencing the Icelandic culture of hot baths in the quaint town of Hofn.
Tips for Visiting Hofn
To ensure you have a great experience visiting the coastal town of Hofn, here are a few tips to keep in mind:
- If you choose to visit Hofn during the winter, opt for a 4×4 with studded tires. The road conditions can vary wildly with many narrow passes and blind curves.
- While driving, it’s mandatory to have your headlights on regardless of the time of day.
- Since the region is less developed than its Western counterparts, finding a hotel can be difficult. This makes choosing a campervan ideal since you can see the island without worrying if there are appropriate accommodations for you.
Explore Hofn with Rent.is
As you’re probably aware, at Rent.is, we believe the best way to find things to do in Hofn, Iceland, is with a campervan. We’ve carefully selected only the best Iceland camper rentals and are confident we have one that fits your travel needs. Contact us today to see which one is right for you.