Located close to the small village of Skógar, Skógafoss is without doubt one of the largest and most well-known waterfalls in Iceland, reachable from Reykjavik in below two hours and simply seen from Iceland’s Route 1 ring highway. The falls are 25 metres broad, and with a drop of 62 metres, is the fifth highest waterfall in Iceland. The identify Skógafoss actually means ‘forest waterfall’, reminding us that this space was as soon as coated in bushes.
Skógafoss has featured in quite a few music movies in addition to the Marvel Studios movie Thor: The Dark World in addition to in Season 8 of Game of Thrones. In The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, Skógafoss was used within the footage on his solution to the Himalayas, regardless of it’s true location being in Iceland.
On the japanese facet of the waterfall, there’s a path that results in a staircase with nearly 500 steps and that, in flip, results in an commentary platform simply above the cascade. The stroll up is manageable for most individuals with a reasonable degree of health, even should you select to have the occasional breather, and price it for the views. Look out for nesting seabirds in your approach up, in addition to the northern fulmars that patrol the skies.
This path additionally marks the beginning (or end) of a well-liked mountaineering route referred to as the Fimmvörðuháls Pass. This path is 22 kilometres lengthy, accessible solely within the Summer. Even should you simply enterprise a brief approach alongside it and switch again, you will notice numerous extra waterfalls. If strolling your complete route from Skógafoss, the route takes you alongside the Skógá River, between Mýrdalsjökull and Eyjafjallajökull (each of which feed the river with meltwater), earlier than ending on the lovely Þórsmörk valley.
At Skógafoss, the Skógá River cascades over a cliff which might have as soon as been Iceland’s south coast. This former sea cliff runs parallel to the current day shoreline for lots of of kilometres, creating a transparent distinction between the coastal lowlands and the Highlands of Iceland.
From the highest, you can’t solely benefit from the great energy of this superb waterfall, but in addition admire views in direction of the Atlantic Ocean.
The river beneath the falls is common with fishermen as a result of it holds a big salmon and char poplation. The numbers had fallen after the eruption of Eyjafjallajökull in 2010 however at the moment are mentioned to be thriving once more.
Back at floor degree, you may stroll as near this staggeringly lovely waterfall as you care to go, however beware… there may be numerous spray and also you’re prone to get soaked! If you may have a rain cowl to your digicam, then by all means carry it.
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Legend has it that the primary Viking settler within the space, Þrasi Þórólfsson, apparently a large, buried treasure in a cave behind the waterfall earlier than his dying in 900 AD. A younger native man apparently discovered the chest some years later, tied a rope to its ring deal with and tried to drag it out, however the deal with ring got here away and the chest was by no means seen once more. This deal with was mentioned to have been given to the native church at Skógar village and used on its door. Today, that outdated church door ring might be seen within the Skógar Folk Museum.
On sunny days it isn’t unusual to see single or double rainbows within the spray produced from Skógafoss. Sadly, we weren’t in luck on that entrance because the sky was overcast on the time of our go to.
Access to the falls is straightforward with a carpark very shut by. There is a bathroom on the entrance to the automobile park additionally which you will have to pay for; it occurred to be open to all after we have been stopped by, however have some change with you simply in case.
Planning a visit to Iceland your self? You can watch a video from our journey to Iceland right here. You can see footage from Skógafoss between 5m 29s to 5m 44s:
Our journey to Iceland was additionally sponsored by Helly Hansen.