Information about Berserkjahraun

Berserkjahraun is a 4000-year-old lava field situated on the Snæfellsnes peninsula. It covers the western part of Helgafell, between Stykkishólmur and Grundarfjörður.

History

The name Berserkjahraun comes from one of the Icelandic Sagas, Eyrbyggja-Saga. According to the saga a farmer brought two berserkers from Sweden. He later gave the berserkers to his brother, Víga-Styr, who lived on the other side of the lava field. One of the Swede fell in love with Víga-Styr’s daughter and asked for her hand in marriage. Víga-Styr made a deal with the berserker, he could have his daughter’s hand if the two Swedes could clear a path through the lava field, connecting Víga-Styr’s farm to his brother’s. A feat considered impossible but the berserkers managed to complete the path quite quickly. Instead of keeping his promise, Víga-Styr had the two Swedes killed and buried them near the path.

Four landmarks from the saga can be found in Berserkjahraun. Those are Berserkjagata, the path itself, Berserkjadys, where the two Berserkers are supposed to be buried, landamerkjagarður, a boundary fence and fjárrétt, a sheep den.

Geology and Geography

The lava field was created after four scoria craters erupted in short intervals around 4000 years ago. The lava ran from the mountain slopes of Bjarnarhafnarfjall and out to the sea at Hraunsfjörður and Hraunsvík. The four scoria craters form a row from west to east from Kerlingarskarð pass. Rauðkúla is the largest one and was the first to erupt. Kothraunskúla was next, then Smáhraunskúla and finally Grákúla. The eruption from Grákúla created Selvallavatn lake, just south of the crater. Kothraunsvatn was also created in these eruptions.

The two largest craters are Rauðkúla, which is 379 metres, and Grákúla, 211 metres. The name Rauðkúla and Grákúla can be translated to “Red Crater” and “Grey Crater” respectively. The craters are, in fact, both red in colour but Grákúla appears grey due to the moss covering the crater.  

Services near Berserkjahraun

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Attractions nearby Berserkjahraun

Bjarnarhöfn Shark Museum

Photo above from Wikimedia, Creative Commons, by Xfigpower The Bjarnahöfn Shark Museum is a fascinating exhibition on the processing of traditio...

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Bjarnarhöfn

Bjarnarhofn is a farmstead on the Snaefellsnes peninsula. Many notable Icelanders lived here. Bjarnarhofn's church and shark museum are listed as ...

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Grundarfjörður

Wikimedia, Creative CommonsChensiyuan  Grundarfjörður is a small town found on the north coast of the Snæfellsnes Peninsula ...

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Höfði

Wikimedia, Creative Commons, photo by Laurentgauthier Höfði is a building in Iceland’s capital, most famous for being the meeting poin...

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Stykkishólmur

Photo by Regína Hrönn Ragnarsdóttir Stykkisholmur is a town of about 1,100 people on northern shore of the Snæfellsnes ...

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Melrakkaey

Melrakkaey ("Fox Island") is a small island found at the mouth of Grundarfjörður. Melrakkaey was protected in 1972 and today, onl...

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Kirkjufell

Kirkjufell, or 'Church Mountain', is a distinctly shaped peak found on the north shore of Iceland’s Snæfellsnes Peninsula, only ...

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Ytri Tunga Beach

Credit: Wikimedia, Creative Commons. Photo by pjt56. Ytri Tunga is a beach by a farm of the same name on the Snæfellsnes Peninsula. Unlike many...

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Búðir

Búðir is a small hamlet in the municipality of Snæfellsbær on the westernmost tip of the Snæfellsnes Peninsula. The ha...

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Gerðuberg

Wikimedia, Creative Commons, Photo Credit: Geri340 Gerðuberg is a row of perfectly shaped hexagonal basalt columns that run along a cliff on the ...

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Eldborg

  Photo by Regína Hrönn Ragnarsdóttir. Eldborg is a 60 m (197 ft) high volcanic crater, located north of Borgarnes in West I...

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Ljósufjöll

Ljósufjöll is a central volcano and fissure vent system, located on the Snæfellsnes peninsula’s volcanic zone in West Icelan...

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Breiðafjörður

Breiðafjörður is a nature reserve and bay between the Snæfellsnes Peninsula and the Westfjords in west Iceland. Geography of Bre...

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Ölkelda

  Olkelda is a farm in the south of Snaefellsnes, taking its name from a renowned mineral spring close by. The pristine mineral spring by the O...

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Ólafsvík

Olafsvik is a fishing town of just over a 1000 people, located on the west side of the Snaefellsnes peninsula.  Economy and services Olafsvik h...

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Rauðfeldsgjá Gorge

Wikimedia. Creative Commons. Emstrur.  Rauðfeldsgjá ("Red Mountain Rift") is a narrow gorge on the east side of the mountai...

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Gatklettur

Gatklettur ("Hellnar Arch") is a famous, naturally formed stone arch found between the villages of Arnarstapi and Hellnar on the Snæ...

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Arnarstapi

Arnarstapi is a village on the southern side of the Snæfellsnes peninsula, once a fishing hub and now a place for travellers to refuel before ...

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Sönghellir Cave

Sönghellir, or 'Song Cave', is a cave on the Snæfellsnes peninsula famed for its echoing quality. The acoustics inside have a magic...

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Hellnar

Hellnar is an old fishing village on the westernmost part of the Snaefellsnes peninsula. It used to be one of the largest fishing stations of the pe...

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Tours near Berserkjahraun

West Coast & Snaefellsnes Peninsula with Lava Caving & Northern Lights Hunting | 2 Day Tour

Explore the beauty of west Iceland in the winter with this fantastic 2-day tour to Snæfellsnes......

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10 Day Winter in Depth Self Drive | Snaefellsnes, Northern Lights and the South Coast

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Sea Kayaking Tour | Departure from the Snaefellsnes Peninsula

Witness Iceland's nature and wildlife at its best with this small group sea kayaking tour.......

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Small Group Minibus Tour of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula

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Snaefellsnes Peninsula | Day Tour with a Home-Cooked Meal

Spend the day discovering the wonders of Snæfellsnes Peninsula, the home of cascading......

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10-Day Untouched Tour | Circle of Iceland with Glacier Hiking & Ice Caving

Come on an adventure of a lifetime and circle the entire island of ice and fire with this 10-day......

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