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Hike to the Falls above Skógafoss

Skógafoss, Iceland, Iceland

based on 8 reviews



3.7 miles

Elevation Gain

778 ft

Route Type



Added by Joe Tobiason

Go beyond Iceland's most famous waterfall, Skógafoss, and follow along the Fimmvorduhals Trail getting to know the river that makes it.

You can see Skogafoss from the highway. You will also immediately see the tourist buses and the throngs of people working hard to make the same photo. Yes the waterfall is truly amazing (put on your rain gear and get as close as possible to feel its power), but there is so much this river has to offer. Go up the stairs to the right side of the falls to the upper viewing platform. This is where you can say goodbye to the other tourists when you climb over the fence (don't worry, there is a ladder to help) and continue going up the river. As you continue, you will pass dozens of small to medium falls, each full of life and color. You can go as long as you wish, but it is far enough away that you'll get to experience the power of the Skoga river by yourself, which makes it all worth while.

To check this out Skógafoss in the winter, check out this adventure.

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Hike to the Falls above Skógafoss Reviews

My wife and I have done a chunk of this today. The snow line was about 3km from the trail head and we didn’t go much further. Crossing the water courses that weren’t frozen could be crossed with the moderate athleticism that I’d expect from anyone having got that far, and it’s so, so worth it. Massive icicles forming mid-waterfall, freezing spray coating canyon walls and a trail which ultimately reaches Thorsmjórk (sorry, I don’t have an Icelandic keyboard) make for an absolutely essential hike. We had clear but extremely windy conditions, -1° and who knows what wind chill and turned back mostly because we say out late and didn’t want to run out of light. We hadn’t needed crampons up to that point but had needed to make creative trail choices in two or three areas not exposed to the sun due to predictable ice. In any conditions it’s worth making the winch up to the top or the headline falls, because even the ones which can be reached on a mettled path are equally - if not more - stunning. Get to Steinbogafoss and you’re in for a treat…

I gave this a shot during this past winter, but the ice made it just too slick to continue safely. So if you're heading there during the off season, bring crampons or just leave this on the bucket list for a summer trip!

Skogafoss is a powerful waterfall that you don't want to miss, but the best part is taking the trail past the top lookout. You don't need to climb the sheep fence anymore, since they've added a gate. The numerous waterfalls and rock formations in the river along the trail are pretty incredible. There was only one other person on the trail who was far ahead of me, so I felt like I had the place to myself. Just me and the grazing sheep. I didn't make it to the hut due to the late hour, but I will be back one day to hike the whole trail. Fantastic!

Did this hike a few weeks ago and it's stunning. Continue all the way up the trail from Skogafoss for 14km until you reach the mountain hut at about 1000m elevation. See canyons, waterfalls even more stunning than Skogafoss and, views to die for. Reward yourself at the top by being between two glaciers with one of them the famous Eyjafjallajökull. Take a lunch break in the mountain hut (1500 ISK donation to the warden for use of facilities) before continuing back down. 28km round trip but well worth it. Planning on going back to do the full 6 day walk from Landmannalaugar.

Once you get up all the stairs that lead up along the the side of Skogafoss, about halfway up there is a little path over to the left that provides a better view of the waterfall than the top lookout in my opinion and a great place for a photo op! There is a little makeshift ladder that leads you over the small sheep fence. And the trail is clear and easy to follow. There are great views of the smaller waterfalls above the main attraction. We followed the trail until we got hungry and decided to turn back. The trail looks like it continues on for quite a distance so you could definitely extend your trip will past the 3 miles that are listed here.

You know whats better than dozens of waterfalls? Dozens of waterfalls with Auroras blazing above them with the mountains in the backdrop. If you come between September-April, I highly recommend camping near the Skogafoss waterfall and taking a midnight hike up to the Skogar river to gets away from the light pollution of the nearby hotel. Bring your sleeping bag and find yourself a nice comfortable spot on the soft tall grass and watch the most beautiful natural light show on earth unfold before your eyes. If you want to take epic pictures, you have endless waterfalls and sections of the river to set as your foreground!

Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!


Explore Skógafoss in the Winter

Hike Fimmvörðuháls Pass

Walk Behind A Hidden Waterfall at Kvernufoss

Hike to and Swim at Seljavallalaug

Explore Sólheimajökull

Explore Iceland's Black Sands