Photograph the Waterfalls of Iceland
Iceland › Seljalandsfoss, Iceland
Added by Eric Bennett
An amazing day trip with tons of waterfalls all just within minutes of each other. So picturesque with year-round beautiful conditions.
If you want to see Iceland's most incredible scenery, you have to rent a car and get a map. From Reykjavik, head south on Hwy 1. The waterfalls listed below are in the order as they appear in the photos above.
Seljalandsfoss: Right off the 1 on the left hand side, just about 45 minutes out of Reykjavik - you can't miss it. This is an awesome place to get sunrise/sunset and aurora photos. Get close and you'll get soaked! You can get some awesome shots in the cave behind it too.
Gjulfrafoss: At Seljalandsfoss, there is a pathway with a bridge that crosses over the stream that Seljalandsfoss drops into. Walk along the pathway for about 200 meters and the pathway will end. Keep going until you come to another stream. You have to walk down to the water and then walk into the small canyon slot in the mountain to see this waterfall. Again, to see this thing you gotta get soaked. FUN!
Nauthusagil: Go back to your car and continue down the highway that you turned on to get to Seljalandsfoss (still heading in the opposite direction of the 1). Follow the road and stay to the right. You will drive around the mountain and the road will turn into dirt/gravel. Keep driving until you see a canyon on your right about 100 meters from the road. There is a dirt road leading up to it but your car might not be able to get to far. At the entrance of the canyon you should see a small sign with a map that says "Nauthusagil." Walk into the canyon, following the stream. You will come to small waterfall with ropes connected to the wall. Climb up along the wall using the ropes and then continue walking a bit and you will come to the big waterfall in the back.
Head back to your car and drive out to Hwy 1. Continue south and you will see another waterfall on the left with no road to it or much signage, it is pretty cool though - worth the quick walk across a stream and hike out about 400 meters. There is also a cool cave near by.
Skogafoss: Continue south on Hwy 1 for about 10 minutes and you will see her on the left side. You can drive all the way up to the parking lot at the bottom.
Svartifoss: Continue south on Hwy 1 for another 20 minutes or so. Look for Skaftafell, the national park, on your map. Svartifoss and Svinafellsjokull, the most famous glacier in Iceland, are located in the park. Turn left where you see the Skaftafell sign and you will enter the park. Once in the park, make a left when you get to the dead end where the offices are, then make a right at the next fork. Drive for a bit and you will see a parking lot on the right where the hike to Svartifoss begins. There is another massive waterfall as pictured above that you will see on this hike as well.
- Waterproof everything
- Waterproof boots
- Warm clothes
- Extra socks
- Extra clothes
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So many great spots!
We did a day trip from Reykjavik, but even with an early 5 am start, we could not hit all of these. We opted to spend more time at Seljalandsfoss to explore around and find the hidden waterfall down the path that is Gljúfrafoss (info is given in description), and to do the hike to the upper waterfalls at Skogafoss. These were definitely highlights, but we plan to return to Iceland in the future and plan our trip so we do not have to return to Reykjavik each night, it makes for way too much driving. But I am sure as tourism here begins to increase the country will be forced to restrict access to some of these areas to preserve their beauty. At this current time there is great access to all of these beautiful sights I hope it continues to last.
The Best Waterfalls!
All of these falls are awesome and they're all so unique. Skogafoss and Seljalandsfoss get pretty busy during the day but they were quiet at sunrise. Definitely bring a lens cloth if you want to shoot Gjulfrafoss or Skogafoss up close so you can wipe the spray off your lens. Gjulfrafoss is VERY wet but tons of fun! My gear got soaked in there so if you bring a camera make sure it's weatherproof.
More Adventures Nearby
Explore Gljúfrabúi Waterfall
Iceland / Gljúfrabúi
Starting in the parking area for Seljalandsfoss, follow the path that leads along the ridge line away from the main road. In less than twenty minutes, you'll reach a small marker and picnic area.
Hike Hverfjall and Dimmuborgir
Iceland / Hverfjall Trailhead
Mt. Hverfjall (Hverfell) is an old tephra crater that is estimated to be 2500 years old. The crater is about 1 km in diameter and 400 feet deep.