The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-IcelandIceland is well-known for being the land of ice and fire due to its many glaciers and volcanoes. In West-Iceland you will find Deildartunguhver, which is the largest geothermal hot spring in Europe. It provides 180 l/sec of 97° hot water. 

Deildartunguhver geothermal spring is a series of hot springs covering an area of 50 meters and only 40% of the geothermal spring water can be seen on the surface. The main area is by a clay hill, which goes by 2 names, Laugarhóll and Hverahóll hill.

The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

There is so much steam emission from the geothermal water that it is difficult to get a good photo, as you get engulfed by the steam and the camera gets wet in the process.

I usually stand by the hot spring for a long time, drenched from the steam, trying to get a relatively good photo of the colourful rocks in Deildartunguhver.  

The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

The rocks sure are colourful - due to the red colour, one of the vents in Deildartunguhver got the name Sláturhver or Slaughter hot spring! It is easy to imagine why when looking at my photo above. The moss adds a beautiful green colour to the redness of the lava in Deildartunguhver.  ​

A special type of hard fern (blechum spicant), which can not be found elsewhere in Iceland, grows by Deildartunguhver. 

The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

Deildartunguhver is harnessed and used for heating up the houses in the nearby towns Akranes (64 km away) and Borgarnes (34 km away).

​Be very careful while visiting Deildartunguhver, as it is boiling hot and it bubbles and boils and spurts a whole lot. You can walk right up to it, but there is a railing right in front of it for our safety. 

The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

I got very startled during one of my visits to Deildartunguhver; I saw foot-prints inside the fence and all the way up the hill! Stepping inside the fence of the most powerful hot spring in Europe is strictly forbidden and life-threatening!

The geothermal water is at a boiling point and no Icelander would ever think of doing this as the danger is so evident. 

A couple of years ago Deildartunguhver went amok and started spouting hot water left and right. Secure railings had to be put up to keep people safe.

The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

We first and foremost want our foreign guests to stay safe in our country, so please heed my advice and don't go too close to the hot springs.

The hot spring gets its name from a farm, Deildartunga, which is close by.

Krauma spa - Geothermal Baths and SpaThe Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

A lovely new addition to Deildartunguhver geothermal hot spring is Krauma Spa, which is open all year round. Here you will find 6 baths, 5 with warm water from Deildartunguhver hot spring, and 1 with cold water coming from the former glacier Ok.

I think it is the perfect combination of Iceland; geothermal water heated by the Icelandic volcanoes and ice-cold water from a glacier - it doesn't get more authentic than this :)

I had often thought that Deildartunguhver needed a geothermal bath so I was thrilled to hear about Krauma.

The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

It wasn't until the summer of 2019 though that I got the opportunity to visit Krauma. I was travelling in Borgarfjörður with my mother and had invited her for a stay at Hotel Hraunsnef.

As the weather was glorious, sunshine and warm, I invited her for a dip in Krauma Spa.

The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

We love hot water, so we dipped into the 38-39 degrees Celcius pool and enjoyed the view of Deildartunguhver. It is an incredible experience being able to soak in the geothermal water from the most powerful hot spring in Europe - and enjoying the view of the same hot spring at the same time.

We soaked in the pool for the longest time and then stepped into the relaxation room next to the bathing area. There we relaxed by the fireplace listening to soothing music - just heavenly.

The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

For the more daring ones - cold water 6-8 degrees C from the former glacier Ok

We spent some 2 hours in the hot pools and in the relaxation area before we headed to our hotel.

I talked to the manager of Krauma before I left and he told us that Krauma is equally popular amongst Icelanders and foreigners. I am glad to hear that as we locals love this area and visit it often as it is so close to Reykjavík. 

The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

Krauma restaurant with a view of Deildartunguhver

It is very nice to know about this stop on the way, where we can dip into a hot pool and have lunch or dinner at the Krauma restaurant. A lovely addition to the travel services on the Silver Circle :)

Tomatoes and other yummy foodThe Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

There are a lot of greenhouses in this area as they make use of the geothermal heat. By Deildartunguhver you can buy new tomatoes which are grown on the spot. And some organic carrots.

The latest addition to Deildartunguhver is a café inside a greenhouse! We bought some coffee and organic tomatoes and brought it inside the warmth of the lovely greenhouse where we were surrounded by tomato plants.

The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

You will find a food-truck called Staldrið next to the greenhouse. It is run by Bragi (see my photo above). Bragi joined us in the greenhouse and told us about his produce. I always value local knowledge when I am travelling around Iceland and cherish the time spent with the farmers and local people as I learn a lot from them.

Deildartunguhver and Krauma are on the Silver Circle of Iceland. You might know that the Golden Circle is the most popular circle in Iceland, but the Silver Circle in West-Iceland is also spectacular. Then we have another very popular circle up north called the Diamond Circle. I refer to these 3 circles as the Jewel Circles of Iceland.

Árhver/Vellir - a hot spring in the middle of a riverThe Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

Árhver hot spring in the middle of a river

On the Silver Circle, you will find Deildartunguhver, Árhver - the geothermal hot spring in the middle of the river, the historical Reykholt and Snorrastofa, the one of a kind Hraunfossar waterfalls, Barnafoss, Húsafell and two awesome caves. 

Árhver, the hot spring in the middle of the river, is the least visited of these locations.

Reykholt - a historical siteThe Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

Snorralaug - archaeological site 

At Reykholt you will find Snorralaug, which is one of the first archaeological sites to be listed in Iceland. This was the home of Snorri Sturluson of the Sturlung Clan, who was, in my opinion, the most influential Icelander ever. You can see why in my travel-blog about Snorri Sturluson and Reykholt:

The Historical Reykholt in West-Iceland & Snorri Sturluson - the most influential Icelander

Hraunfossar waterfallsThe Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

Hraunfossar waterfalls 

Hraunfossar waterfalls are almost 1 km wide and consist of many springs of subterranean water, welling up from underneath the lava field Hallmundarhraun. The clear water then joins the glacial river Hvítá in Borgarfjörður, which runs from Eiríksjökull glacier.

Hraunfossar are a natural phenomenon. And you can get some beautiful photos here from different angles. Some of my favourite photos are from Hraunfossar.

The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

Hraunfossar waterfalls 

Hraunfossar are amongst my most-favourite waterfalls in Iceland and I have such lovely memories from sitting by the falls with my family having a picnic. The falls are fenced off now.

I shot this wobbly video of Hraunfossar to show you how beautiful this waterfall is:

See also my travel-blog:

A Local's favourite Icelandic Waterfalls

Into the GlacierThe Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

The Ice Cave tunnel - Into the Glacier 

One of the caves on the Silver Circle is man-made - the Ice Cave Tunnel - which is a tunnel inside Iceland's second-largest glacier, Langjökull. I have visited it twice and can recommend it.

You can see my travel-blog here:

A Visit to the Ice Cave Tunnel in Langjökull Glacier in Iceland - Into the Glacier

Víðgelmir - the CaveThe Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

Víðgelmir lava cave - the Cave

The other cave is a very colourful lava cave in Hallmundarhraun lava field called Víðgelmir. I have also visited it twice and never get enough of this extraordinary cave.

Víðgelmir - the Cave is now very easily accessible and timber stairs and walkways have been added. In this cave, you will see extraordinary lava formations and various lava colours.

The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

Lava colours in Víðgelmir Cave

You can see many more photos and information on Víðgelmir - the Cave in my travel-blog: The Extraordinary Lava Formations and Colours in Víðgelmir Lava Cave in West-Iceland

If you fancy visiting this colourful cave, then you can buy a family-friendly tour inside the cave here: The Cave Explorer | Family Friendly Tour of Vidgelmir Lava Cave

See also:

A Local's Favourite Caves in Iceland

Þingvellir National ParkThe Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

Þingvellir national park

The Silver Circle will then take you across Kaldidalur highland track, and to Þingvellir, one of the main stops on the Golden Circle. Þingvellir national park is the most sacred place in Iceland, in my opinion.

At Þingvellir the Vikings, the settlers of Iceland, established their parliament Alþingi in 930 and it is one of the rare places in the world where you can see the tectonic plates above ground.

The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

Þingvellir is the last stop on the Silver Circle, but of course, there are many variations to this circle and more stops can be included and others omitted.

You can drive half the circle and visit Deildartunguhver, Krauma and the 2 waterfalls, or stay f.ex. at Hotel Húsafell for the night and visit all the stops on the Silver Circle in 2 days.The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

Visiting the Silver Circle in a huge jeep - see my travel-blog The beautiful Silver Circle of Iceland in a modified Super Jeep

To visit the Silver Circle you can join various tours:

Silver Circle Super Jeep Tour | West Iceland and Langjokull glacier

The Silver Circle Helicopter Tour

Silver Circle & Ice Cave Daytour

Silver Circle Day Tour | Hot Spring Bathing and Waterfalls

The Silver Circle - Deildartunguhver &  Krauma Spa in West-Iceland

Kaldidalur highland track 

To visit Deildartunguhver and Krauma you can rent a car in Reykjavík and drive to the west. From ring-road 1 turn right on road 50 just before you reach the bridge by Borgarnes town. Continue until you see the huge steam on your left-hand side.

Have a lovely time visiting the Silver Circle and hot springs of West-Iceland :)

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