Iceland does not have many forests and some might not even call Hallormsstaðaskógur a forest. But it still is the biggest forest in Iceland and the first to be acclaimed as a „national forest“.
The weather conditions in Hallormsstaðaskógur are good which is probably one of the reasons it was possible to cultivate a forest in the area. The temperatures in the summer are some of the highest in Iceland and the precipitation is minor.
Hallormsstaðaskógur is located by the glacial river Lagarfljót, which has changed a lot since the building of Kárahnjúkar hydro station. When my husband and I hiked through Kringilsárrani our hike ended on the banks of Lagarfljót for it, too, was to be affected by the big dam as the huge glacial river Jökulsá á Dal would be diverted into Lagarfljót.
There are many good hiking paths through the forest and it is possible to visit a tree museum and a forest village, the only one in Iceland.
Atlavík is a popular camping site in Hallormsstaðaskógur, close to the river. Icelanders like to stay there over a long period in the summer with their campers. I have have spent some nights there with my family although we like the less crowded camping sites better.
How to get there:
Hallormsstaðaskógur is by road no. 931, around 15 km from ring road no. 1.