The Fagradalsfjall volcano, on Iceland’s Reykjanes Peninsula, erupted on December 18, 2023, after weeks of seismic activity. The eruption, which local authorities were prepared for, has resulted in the evacuation of the local area. Along with showing just how powerful the wonders of nature can be, it’s also producing stunning photos that have awed adventurers and the general public.
Eruption of the Fagradalsfjall volcano
Icelandic authorities were anticipating a possible eruption after several seismic events were noted in the town of Grindavik, home of the famed Blue Lagoon, beginning on October 25, 2023. As the activity continued into November, the decision was made for all residents to evacuate the area, numbering around 4,000 individuals.
To put things into perspective, from the end of October to the volcanic eruption at 10:00 PM local time on December 18, 2023, a total of 20,000 earthquakes were reported in the region as a result of the seismic activity.
The Fagradalsfjall volcano is among the most famous – and active – in the world, having been in the news in recent years for its eruptions in 2021 and 2022. The 2023 eruption opened up a fissure in the ground measuring 2.5 miles, with lava rising 98 feet into the air.
As of December 20, the eruption is weakening, and the lava appears to be flowing away from Grindavik – a good sign for those worried about their homes and other belongings.
Streams of molten lava
Along with bursting into the air, the lava erupting from the Fagradalsfjall volcano is also streaming across the ground, creating an amazing sight of twisting patterns. At night, the view is absolutely stunning.
Incredible drone footage of the Fagradalsfjall volcano
Molten lava rising into the air
Molten lava coming from the fissure that formed in the ground as a result of the Fagradalsfjall volcano erupting. This image was captured on December 19, 2023, just one day after this natural phenomenon began.
Viewing from a distance
When viewing a volcanic eruption, it’s better to do it from a distance. Not only is it safer, as you’re away from the lava and not directly inhaling the dangerous smoke that emanates from the fissure, but it also means you can capture stunning photos that show just how large the event is – it really gives some perspective.
Putting things into perspective
Now, this photo really puts the volcanic eruption into perspective. Many might not realize just how close the Fagradalsfjall volcano is to Grindavik, nor how big the fissure is. This aerial image shows why residents were evacuated.
An incredible sight at night
It’s hard to believe something so beautiful can be so dangerous – the patterns caused by the streams of lava have made for a truly mesmerizing sight for the drones flying overhead.
Watching the Fagradalsfjall volcano erupt
As with previous eruptions, sightseers have gathered around the Fagradalsfjall volcano to watch the event. We hope they’re keeping a safe distance from the lava!
An eerie glow
The effects of the eruption can be seen in areas away from Grindavik, as shown by this photo of the nearby town of Keflavik. Also located on the Reykjanes Peninsula, it’s no surprise residents are bearing witness to an eerie orange glow in the night sky.
Not just lava rising into the sky
Lava isn’t the only concern when it comes to volcanic eruptions – smoke and ash also rise into the air. The current event has raised concerns over possible gas pollution, which will spread across Iceland in the coming days.
The smoke also poses a risk to air travel, but, as of publishing, no flights have been impacted.
Looking like the end of the world
Another Icelandic town to experience the eerie red-orange skies caused by the Fagradalsfjall volcano’s eruption is Hafnarfjörður. The hue, along with the menacing-looking cloud, make this photo look like a scene out of a post-apocalyptic movie.
Flowing molten lava
This is probably our favorite photo to be shared of the Fagradalsfjall volcano’s ongoing eruption. The glowing lava flowing across the ground at night is truly something else!
Aerial view of the Fagradalsfjall volcano
Another aerial photo of the Fagradalsfjall volcano erupting. It’s incredible that such a large fissure can naturally form in the ground – Mother Nature is truly amazing!
Lava or a scientific photo?
This photo, shared by the Iceland Police Department, looks more like a photo you’d find in a science textbook than lava flowing from the Fagradalsfjall volcano.
Continued earthquakes and after shocks are possible
While officials have stated that the volcanic eruption poses no threat to residents, they have warned that earthquakes and the subsequent aftershocks could continue over the next few months, even after the eruption has subsided.
Too close for comfort
This photo, taken on December 18, 2023, shows volcanic ash and smoke rising into the sky near the Bessastadir, the presidential residence for Iceland’s leader, Guðni Thorlacius Jóhannesson. It’s a bit too close for comfort, if you ask us. We hope everyone has been evacuated from the home and is safe.
Officials have been closely monitoring the volcanic eruption, both from the ground and the air. This photo shows them looking at the lava from, presumably, a helicopter.
We thought the orange hues from the lava were eerie-looking… Why does it look worse when the lava is red?
Molten lava rising in the darkness
Those looking to capture the most stunning photos of the volcanic eruption have been staying up late, as the glowing lava creates a contrasting view against the black backdrop of night.