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4 Day Mountain Challenge Horse Riding Holiday Along Forgotten Trails in Skagafjörður

Hesta Sport, Varmahlíð, Skagafjörður, Northwestern Region, Northwest Constituency, Iceland

Horse Riding Holiday in Iceland

For three days, you will be exploring beautiful forgotten trails in the outback of Skagafjörður. Just like Icelanders, you will ride with an accompanying hand horse and climb up and down narrow valleys and canyons, cross a river countless times, and enjoy smooth tölt on grassy paths. During this adventurous challenge, your horses will carry you off into barely touched nature, away from civilization. At night, you will stay in one of the lovely Hestasport timber cottages and are welcome to enjoy a relaxing bath in the natural hot pot after a long day in the saddle. Don't waste this opportunity and enjoy this holiday to the fullest!

Key Information

  • Rider Weight Limit: 240 pounds / 110 kilograms
  • Tack Type: English
  • Horse Height Range: 13 to 14 hands
  • Horse Breed: Icelandic horse

Meet the instructors

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  • 3 horse riding days
  • Approximate daily riding time: 2-7 hours
  • Ride along the pristine nature of the river Héraðsvötn delta
  • Service of the English or German-speaking guides
  • Any ground transportation on the riding tour
  • 3 nights' accommodation

Skill level

  • Advanced


3 days with instruction
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  • Hot spring
  • Hot tub / Jacuzzi
  • Concierge desk
  • Dining area
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Garden
  • Kitchen
  • Lounge
  • Multilingual staff
  • Restaurant
  • Smoke-free property
  • Terrace
  • ATM / banking
  • Convenience / grocery store
  • Free parking
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Internet access
  • Laundry
  • Parking lot
  • Tour assistance
  • Wireless internet

With magnificent views overlooking the vast plains and distant mountains of the Skagafjörður valley, Hesta Sport's seven charming timber cottages are the ideal place to spend your days off all year round. Experience the serenity of northern Iceland and fill your days with the endless possibilities for adventure that Skagafjörður has to offer.

The cottages are nestled together up on the hill only a short walking distance from the center of Varmahlíð. In town, you will find all the services you need including tourist information, grocery shop, restaurant, petrol station, bank, hotel, swimming pool, and more. They have different styles of cottages, each with:

  • Unlimited access to the natural hot tub
  • Full self-catering kitchen and dining facilities
  • Bathroom and shower
  • Bed linen, towels, and bathrobes
  • Furnished living area
  • Free Wi-Fi

From the hot tub at the center of the well-maintained cottage site, you can enjoy the golden light of the midnight sun or watch the northern lights. The cottages range in size from studio-style bungalows (two to four people) to spacious multi-room retreats.


You will ride two horses per person per day. An English and/or German-speaking guide will accompany you. All necessary transfers connected to riding are included.

Day 1

Hestasport will meet you in Varmahlíð, Skagafjörður at the bus station. If you travel by car, you will meet them in their office in Varmahlíð. Next, you will move into one of the cozy cottages and settle in. In the afternoon, you will be taken to the stables, Vindheimamelar, where you will meet your horses. They will show you how to ride with a hand horse and then you will set out for your first ride.

You will follow the trails leading the pristine nature of the river, Héraðsvötn delta. This area bustles with various species of wild birds, you're in a birdwatchers' paradise. The horses will be left at the corral for the night and you will be driven back to the cottages. (Riding Time: 2 to 3 hours)

Day 2

In the morning, Hestasport will pick you up from your cottage and return to the corral. You'll saddle up and disappear into the valley of Mælifellsdalur. Soon, you will leave all the signs of civilization behind. Throughout the day, you will follow the trail, the mountains Mælifellshnjúkur to your left, Reykjafjall to your right. The pure, Icelandic air will be filled with the rhythmic sound of hoof steps.

Around midday, you might see the edge of two glaciers, Hofsjökull and Langjökull. Afterward, you will descend to the impressive valley, Einarsdalur, and the narrow gorge, Stafnsgil, where you will cross the meandering river numerous times. The path will lead you to the corral Stafnsrétt, where you’ll leave the horses for the night. Hestasport's transportation will meet you there and take you back to the cottages where you can relax in the hot tub after the long day in the saddle. (Riding Time: 6 to 7 hours)

Day 3

From Stafnsrétt, your horses will climb up the steep slopes of Stafnsbrekka. The view on the glaciers from the hilltop may leave you speechless. You will continue the ride over the pass, Kíðaskarð. After a well-deserved lunch break surrounded by high sharp mountains, you will head back to the lowland of Skagafjörður.

Soon, you’ll complete the circle by crossing the river Svartá, visiting the “steaming” waterfall Reykjafoss, and coming back to Vindheimamelar. After saying goodbye to the horses, Hestasport will take you back to the cottages. (Riding Time: 6 to 7 hours)

Day 4

You’ll wake up one last time in your cozy cottage, but of course, you are also welcome to book some additional nights! Hestasport will be happy to drop you off at the bus station in Varmahlíð.


Magnús Sigmundsson


This riding holiday will take place at Hesta Sport. You will find them in Varmahlíð, Skagafjörður, Iceland. The cottages are only a short two-kilometer drive from their office.


  • Hesta Sport's office, 2 kilometers' drive



  • Horse riding
  • Hot tub / Jacuzzi


  • Dining area
  • Kitchen


  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Tour assistance


Meals are not included. This tour is self-catering. Your cottage has a fully equipped kitchen where you can prepare your own meals. You can bring your packed lunch on the tour every day.

Things to do (optional)

If you wish to extend your holiday with a few extra nights, please inform Hestasport. There are endless things to do in the area apart from horse riding such as:

  • White water rafting
  • Visiting an island full of puffins
  • Sea angling
  • Salmon and trout fishing
  • Hiking
  • Whale watching

The price for extra nights and other activities are not included in the tour price.

What's included

  • 3 riding days
  • Services of English and/or German-speaking guides
  • Use of helmets, raingear, and saddlebags
  • Ground transportation throughout the tour
  • 3 nights' accommodation
  • 11% VAT

What's not included

  • Transfer to and from Iceland
  • Transfer to and from Varmahlíð
  • Meals
  • Riding breeches, boots, jackets, and gloves
  • Alcoholic beverages

How to get there

Recommended Airports

Arrival by airplane

Please arrange your flight to arrive at Keflavík International Airport (KEF) or Akureyri Airport (AEY). Guests have several options to get to Hestasport from Keflavík International Airport (KEF) airport. The easiest and most convenient is renting a car. The driving distance is approximately 340 kilometers. Alternatively, guests can take the airport shuttle bus to Reykjavík and take the bus to Varmahlíð. The bus departs twice a day.

Arrival by bus

There is a twice-daily bus service from Akureyri Airport (AEY) to Varmahlíð that you can take.

Driving directions from Varmahlíð

  • In Varmahlíð, you turn off Ring Road no.1 onto road no. 752.
  • When you are on road no. 752, Hesta Sport's office is the first building on the left.
  • It is 150 meters from the junction.
  • It's a white and blue painted building.


N 65°32,744' W 19°26,338' or 65°32'44''N 19°26'20''W (on an iPhone)

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 25% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid 30 days before arrival.
4 days / 3 nights
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This vacation is available from July to September.

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