One of the final stops on South Iceland’s famous Golden Circle route and just 45 km from Reykjavik, the green-living town of Hveragerdi harbors a wealth of geothermic wonders. Located on an active volcanic zone, the steaming landscape of Hveragerdi sprawls along a 5,000 year-old lava field and its geothermal park is one of the country’s main centers of natural energy. A unique community powered by the earth, the Hveragerdi Geothermal Park heats a series of greenhouses that grow everything from flowers to vegetables, and even bananas.
The celebrated Hveragerdi hot springs are one of the principal draws for visitors to the town, ranging from hissing steam vents and gurgling puddles of mud, to pools so hot that locals use the water to boil eggs and bake bread in a ground oven. Along with bathing in the naturally heated Laugaskarð swimming pool and enjoying an organic clay foot bath, the area around Hveragerdi also offers prime terrain for hiking, surrounded by lush forests running along the banks of the Varmá river. As of 2008, the region is also home to a new hot spring and its creation is the subject of the town’s fascinating Quake 2008 exhibition.