This is the ninth blog post about my Iceland trip from last year. This time about the places I think that you must see in South Iceland from Vik to Geysir. Check my other posts for Reykjavík and Western Iceland, and the eastern, northern and the southern part of the Westfjords, the North and the East of Iceland and the first part of the South from Skaftafell to Vik. As usual, I’ll probably miss some great places so let me know in the comments!
Must see Solheimasandur Plane Wreck
Just a few kilometres east from Vik there is a car parking just alongside the Ring Road. From there, follow the path that will lead you to the wreckage of US Navy DC-3 plane. The plane crashed on the black beach in 1973, it probably ran out of fuel, the exact details are a bit muddy, but luckily everyone survived.
Previously you could drive up to the wreck, but now you’ll have to walk the approximatively 4 km from the Ring Road to the wreck, the path is well marked, and you probably won’t be alone, so there is no risk of getting lost.
Must see Skogafoss
Skogafoss is one of the busiest waterfalls I have seen, probably because it’s close to the Road, has a hotel and camping right next to it.
It’s one of the biggest “single waterfall” in the country, being 15m wide and 60m high. On sunny days its mist usually creates a rainbow against the green cliffside. There is a quick path going to the top with a couple of nice vantage points along the way.
Must see Seljalandsfoss and Gljúfrabúi
Your next stop should come up very quickly after Skogafoss and is also very close to the Ring Road. Seljalandsfoss is the biggest of a series of waterfalls, and a short hike will take you to all of them and goes behind Seljalandsfoss for an amazing view. Gljúfrabúi is a cave into which Gljúfrafoss falls; you can go inside the cave, your shoes might get a bit wet if you don’t manage to balance on the stones when going in and you will certainly get wet from the mist, but it’s an awesome experience so don’t miss it!
Must see Haifoss
Haifoss, the “high/tall waterfall” is proof that just off the beaten tourist track and away from the bustle you can see some fantastic things. You will need a good car or long hike to get there, but this 122m high waterfall and the gorge the water of the Fossá formed are a spectacle to behold.
Must see Gullfoss
Gullfoss is one of the biggest tourist attractions as it’s quite close to Reykjavik and very imposing. It’s a series of waterfalls that fall into a narrow canyon that goes perpendicular to the river above, which gives it its particular charm. There are multiple car and bus parks and a biggish restaurant and shop where you can buy all your souvenirs. A well built path will take you either close to the falls or above them.
You might notice all the water droplets on my lens in the picture below, that’s the risk in Iceland but don’t let the water stop you from taking pictures!
Must see Geysir
Close to Gullfoss is the Geysir area where the “great Geysir”, which gave its name to the word geyser, it has been active for 10,000 years, but in recent years it erupts very rarely. There are a couple of smaller geysers that erupt quite frequently, one is Strokkur that erupts very regularly (every 5 to 10 minutes) and can reach a height of up to 40m.
I also had great fun to watch people getting surprised and drenched by its eruptions.
It goes a bit too quickly in the timelapse so here is a sequence of images that shows Strokkur erupting.
Don’t hesitate to let me know if I forgot something on my list.
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