What is the risk of an eruption around Reykjavik?


Hey, I was just wondering whether Reykjavik is susceptible to any kind of volcanic eruption? I read the mountains all around the city and airport are active volcanoes, so don’t know how much caution I should take. Is the city at risk any time soon?


Nah, there’s no really active volcano near Reykjavík. The place is very safe. There are some lava fields on the peninsula, but they are all dormant or dead. The active volcanos are in the highlands and not close to any people. It’s not like in Italy where people literally live on volcanoes!

Also, Iceland has a really capable group of geologists who can predict eruptions pretty well, so usually there is some heads up :slight_smile: - and it’s far away from the city!


You should definitively bring your lava-resistant umbrella…

… nah :wink:

There’s a chance that we’ll get an eruption “soon” in the Reykjanes peninsula area.
When I say soon, I mean sometime in the next 1000 years or so.
But if something does erupt in the Reykjanes peninsula, you can expect the eruption to last up to 100 years.

I wouldn’t worry about it.

But if you’re interested in volcanic activity around Reykjavik, you can read up on the volcanoes near Bláfjöll and Trölladyngja.

When the Trölladyngja volcano erupted last, it created the “Kapelluhraun”. This happened in the 13th century.


Here’s a link to an article about the likelihood of volcanic activity near Reykjavik: https://www.visindavefur.is/svar.php?id=3045

It’s in Icelandic, so you’ll have to use Google translate if you have difficulties reading Icelandic


Hey Richard!

You shouldn’t worry one bit, even when the colossal eruption happened in Vestmannaeyjar (The Westman Isles) back in the 1970s, evacuation was successful and although people lost their homes to the lava, they all got out in good time.

Well, there was one casualty in that eruption, but it was his own fault, sorry to say! It was a man who went back to one of the houses to steal something, long after they were supposed to be evacuated. He got trapped inside and was killed when the house filled with lava.

But you should be perfectly safe in Reykjavík. Even when there are highland eruptions, people drive up to marked safe-spots to see them. So for my account, you should actually be lucky if you’re situated in Iceland when there is an eruption, because you might have the chance of witnessing the whole thing!

Hope this was informative! :grin: