East of Reykjavík on the Ringroad, the hothouse town of Hveragerði and nearby transit hub Selfoss are the gateway to Iceland’s central south, a swathe of fertile plains watered by the Hvítá, Rangá and Þjórsá – Iceland’s longest river at 230km – and the clutch of bulky glaciers to the east. The inland area here cowers beneath Hekla, a destructive volcano whose antics have put paid to regional farming at least twice in recorded history, with tracks past the mountain leading to hot springs and brightly coloured hills at Landmannalaugar, right on the edge of Iceland’s rugged Interior. If you enjoy the great outdoors, Landmannalaugar’s surrounds are worth a trip to Iceland in their own right, not least for the superb four-day Laugavegur hiking trail. If you’re not that serious, consider less demanding tracks over the hills above Hveragerði, also featuring steaming hot springs.

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