Worth a Trip: Hike or Drive to the End of the Earth

Abandoned farms, lonely lighthouses, seal colonies and craggy windswept cliffs home to prolific bird life – there are few places in the world that feel as remote as Langanes. The highlight of the area is the viewing platform over the bird-filled cliffs at Skoruvíkurbjarg: it lies above a rock pillar (known as Stóri Karl) that's home to thousands of northern gannets, while nearby are colonies of auks, including guillemots and puffins.

Langanes is perfect for hiking, and to help plot your route it’s worth picking up the Útivist & afþreying #7 map, available at Ytra Lón Farm Lodge and local information centres. Another excellent resource is the Birding Trail map, which covers birdwatching information in the northeast (from Mývatn to Langanes), with information online at www.birdingtrail.is.

Consider a 4WD tour (minimum two people) of Langanes with Ytra Lón. A 2½-hour tour to the bird cliffs of Skoruvík costs 13,500kr per person, or spend five hours touring, including a visit to the abandoned village of Skálar and the lighthouse at Fontur (24,600kr). Tours run May to August (the best time for birdwatching, though auks leave in early August and puffins and guillemots in mid-August). Prebooking is required.