Hand down, our favorite campground in Iceland is Hamrar.
Situated just outside of the beautiful North Iceland town of Akureyri, it really represents what a quality campground is to us. While living without amenities is fine, as it comes with the territory of living in a small campervan, given that campgrounds throughout Iceland are all roughly the same cost (about 3,000 ISK or $30 USD for two people) it can be difficult to praise places that provide next to no additional value than a place to park when compared to a site like this.
Hamrar Campground came at a well needed time in our trip around Iceland’s Ring Road. It is a manned camp site – meaning upon arrival there was actually someone to pay and talk with. He was very friendly and provided great detail about the campground, and was open to helping travelers with other questions they have about traveling around Iceland.
The campground had more in common with a summer camp than just an overpriced parking lot.
Once we parked, we took a walk throughout the quite expansive grounds, and there was a lot to like. Cold water sink stations were available throughout the park for filling up water jugs and washing dishes. Well maintained, clean, and heated restrooms with (FREE!) hot water shower facilities were also very excellent – with multiple showers and stalls each. While the campground would fill up with people, it was generally not a long wait to shower. They also had a laundry set up – 1 washer and 1 dryer, which was nice to have on hand, though difficult to time sharing with other guests.
The weather in this region was also far better than our previous night spent in the Westfjords. Of course, no one can control the weather, but certainly it helped to shape a better view of this already great place. Not to mention, we also got to see the Aurora Borealis from here, making it a really captivating and magical end to our evening.
If you have never seen the Aurora’s, pictures will not do it justice. The beautiful sweeping movements are really intoxicating to watch, and we felt like total nerds as we started to freak out when we noticed they were occurring!
We liked Hamrar Campground in Iceland so much that we decided to use it as a base and returned the following day to stay the night. As we discovered, it is the little things that one can really take for granted in day-to-day life, and when traveling by campervan without knowing when the next restroom will come up, when we’ll be showering next, if we will be able to do some laundry, etc. – it is great to have a proper campground like this one to fall back on.
We highly recommend Hamrar Campground if you are planning to stay the night around Akureyri, Iceland.