#visiticeland

The weather is one of the most unpredictable factors people live with and need to accept in Iceland. This applies both visitors and citizens all year round, independent of seasons.  Although the Meteorological Office in Iceland issues a daily and weekly forecasts the weather often behaves differently.

If you plan a holiday in Iceland it is a good idea to study the weather

Reykjanes Peninsula is the place in Iceland where most visitors arrive, it is the home of the International Airport in Keflavík.  Apart from the Blue Lagoon many of the most popular attraction in Iceland are in other Regions.  Reykjanes peninsula, on the other hand, has many exciting attractions and fascinating natural wonders.  Landscape attractions accessible by car less than hours drive from Reykjavík. There are also many interesting hiking trails and moutains in Reykjanes Peninsula.

Spákonuvatn a small shallow lake

The beautiful small lake, Spákonuvatn (The Fortunetellers lake), is south of the mountain Trölladyngja; a mountain everyone who arrives via the airport in Keflavík will see when driving to Reykjavík. The small lake is surrounded by geological wonders like Sogið. Although a short distance for Reykjavík and Reykjanesbær town it is place few people visit, so you can expcet a quite and peacful time visiting Spákonuvant. There are also interesting spots to visit nearby like Lambafellsgjá fissure, Keilir mountain and Djúpavatn lake. It is part of the backland and "wilderness" at Reykjanes Peninsula.

Finding Spákonuvatn

The road to Trölladyngja and Spákonuvatn is midways between Keflavík and Reykjavík marked Keilir.  It is a perfect place for comfortable hiking in wonderful colorful surroundings, not far away from the city.  Many of these places you can visit are covered on our web page like Lambafellsgjá and Trölladyngja.

When is the best time to visit Iceland and take a tour to see the many natural wonders and the amazing landscape Iceland offers? Is there any noticeable difference between the seasons?  The short answer is yes; there is a considerable difference between seasons and if you are organizing a visit or a trip to Iceland you should think about when to visit?. Each season has its character, and in some of the seasons, it is simply impossible to visit some of the natural wonders.

The summer is the best time to visit Iceland

When driving in Iceland on vacation between natural wonders like waterfalls, basalt column cliffs, hot spring geothermal pools and glacier lagoons, you will most likely notice animals in the countryside. Especially if you are driving past farms and farmlands.  You will see a lot of sheep and cows, not to mention all the birds, small birds and large birds like geese and Whooper swans. Friendly wonderful animals, and in Iceland you don't have to worry about dangerous wild animals since they are almost non-existing in Iceland.

Overall most of the animals in Iceland are a significant addition to the landscape.

Skógar is a tiny hamlet on the south shore of Iceland right by the Ring Road.  Although best known in Iceland for most of the 20th century for its regional primary and middle school serving the surrounding rural area, today it is mostly recognized for the stunning waterfall Skógafoss. The waterfall is one of the best-known landmarks in Iceland and one of the most visited tourist attractions in the country. Skógar also was one of the first places in Iceland offering a hotel accommodation for tourists during summer like most district schools, at that time.  It was quite common that the dormitory was used as a hotel during the summer season. Like the building at Skógar, the School buildings and dormitory were beautiful well designed and good buildings. It is still a hotel, but now an all year round as both communication and the educational system has changed in Iceland.

A one of a kind museum and another waterfall

For many reasons the small hamlet Skógar and Skógafoss waterfall has developed into a large-scale tourist attraction in Iceland.  The whole area is stunning with the waterfall, green hills and the glacier in the background. Skógar also has a long history of interest among visitors and tourists offering accommodation long before others in the rural area in Iceland.  The popular hiking trail Fimmvörðuháls, leading between the glaciers Eyjafjallajökull glacier and Mýrdalsjökull glacier to Þórsmörk, starts at Skógar.  There is also another waterfall Kvernufoss in the neighborhood becoming increasingly popular. But last but not least is the Skógar cultural and heritage museum where you can see local artifacts related to the living conditions in Iceland for many centuries.  It is one of the most interesting museums in Iceland and opens all year round.

Access to Skógar is as simple as it gets in Iceland

If you are driving on the Ring Road Skógar and Skógafoss is almost impossible to miss.  The waterfall and the hamlet are quite visible from the Road Nr. 1.  It is located between the village of Hvolsvöllur and Vík at the west end of Sólheimasandur.  Anyone visiting Skógar should take the time to visit Kvernufoss waterfall and the museum.  Skógar also has excellent accommodation, a great camping site and wonderful hiking trails up the hill by Skógarfoss waterfall. 

Skógar is a tiny hamlet on the south shore of Iceland right by the Ring Road

The canyon Jökulsárgljúfur is one of the most spectacular and stunning natural wonders in Iceland. The canyon is usually underrated as it is in the northeastern region of Iceland, almost as far as possible from the capital Reykjavík.  But also to being a great place to visit it is furthermore the home of many other spectacular attractions, like waterfalls and places you won't see anywhere else in Iceland or on the planet for that matter.  Although the waterfall Dettifoss is the big attraction in Jökulsárgljúfur, there is another beautiful waterfall Hafragilsfoss a short distance north of Dettifoss in Jökulsárgljúfur.  Although not in a walking distance the drive is quite short.

A great place to view Jökulsárgljúfur canyon

The waterfall Hafragilsfoss is one of the spectacular waterfalls in the mighty river Jökulsá á Fjöllum. The river is one of the largest and most powerful rivers in Iceland and an inseparable part of the canyon Jökulsárgljúfur. The falls approximately 30 meters high and about 90 meters wide is surrounded by cliffs.  Proximity to the waterfall is quite steep on the west side and not so convenient on the east side either, so a telephoto lens is recommended if you want to take a closeup photo.  In addition to being a great waterfall the parking lot for Hafragilsfoss and the path to the panel, is also one of the best places to view the canyon Jökulsárgljúfur.  You can see the canyon almost all the way south to Dettifoss and also north where you have a view of part of Hólmatungur.

Access is quite easy

Like most of the Jökulsárgljúfur and the Natural wonders in the canyon, we recommend highly viewing it from the east side. Although the road is a bit more challenging and a gravel road the view to Hafragilsfoss and the parking lot on the east side is much more impressive. So if you are coming from Myvatn lake on the Ring Road Nr. 1 you must go over the bridge on the river Jökulsá á Fjöllum and take a turn left almost immediately after you pass the bridge north on Road Nr. 864 Hólsfjallavegur. The parking lot by Hafragilsfoss is about 32 kilometers drive.

Hafragilsfoss waterfall in Jökulsárgljúfur

This waterfall is sometimes described as a treasure in the Icelandic landscape and the flora of natural wonders. It's nearby sibling Seljalandsfoss waterfall, only in a short walking distance away, is one of Iceland's most renowned attractions. Gljúfrabúi is, on the other hand, gaining more and more attention and most of the visitors viewing Seljalandsfoss also take the time to look at Gljúfrabúi.  Although coming from the same cliff, there are some striking differences between the two waterfalls.

A beautiful name and stunning waterfall

There is something wonderful about the Icelandic name Gljúfrabúi. It means Gorge Dweller.  It conveys the feeling of a peaceful being living in this cave-like place with water falling from the 40-meter cliff. The name is not very old and is believed to originate in a poem by Iceland's most beloved poets Jónas Hallgrímsson who was also a natural scientist.  And this is the reality of the waterfall rimmed in a narrow gorge producing its drizzle and this cold damp like a cold sauna. You need to be prepared to enter this wet world of the Gorge Dweller.  The crack is narrow and the open cave is muggy. It is not an easy entrance but once inside you might think of a cathedral for creatures from another world. Although mostly dark inside and under the waterfall there is a lot of vegetation on the rocks because of the constant moist. In addition to the inside viewing you can also climb the narrow path on the outside and up to the cliff in front of the waterfall and view it from above.  Both places require extreme caution and good hiking shoes.

Access to get there is easy

This waterfall, like Seljalandsfoss, is conveniently located a short distance from the Ring Road, Road Nr. 1, in the southern region in Iceland.  It is only one and a half kilometer from the intersection of Road Nr. 1 and Road Nr. 249 Þórsmerkurvegur, the road leading to Þórsmörk in the Icelandic Highland.

The crack is narrow and the open cave is muggy.

To be on your own placed in a large landscape with no sound other than the waves on the beach and the songs of birds looking for food in the sand or beneath the surface of the sea is an experience of a lifetime. A sanctuary from all the noises you recognize so well from constantly living in a large city with its traffic, disturbances, threats, intimidation and unclean air.   You are surrounded by beauty and stillness at the same time overpowered by the magnitude of the landscape.

You are surrounded by beauty and stillness at the same time overpowered by the magnitude of the landscape.

The waterfall Faxi in the river Tungufljót in South region in Iceland is only twelve kilometers from the famous Geysir hot spring area and twenty kilometers from the famous waterfall Gullfoss. The origin of Tungufljót river is in the lake Sandvatn or Sandlake quite visible if you visit Jarlhettur and Hagavatn nearby.  Faxi has been described as a small version of Gullfoss but of course not as powerful. The waterfall is 80 meters wide and seven meters high.  It is a beautiful waterfall placed in a wonderful and peaceful landscape.  It is also possible to walk quite near the waterfall on the lower level and feel the drizzle from the water.  A photo option to capture the waterfall from the upper level is also a good idea.  Although never lacking water the waterfall has also been named Vatnsleysufoss meaning the waterfall with no water or the waterfall with shortage of water.

Faxi waterfall is part of the Golden Circle Drive

Many visitors in Iceland prefer to drive the golden circle road trip. It is a simple all year round day trip from Reykjavík with many interesting stops and impressive historical spots and natural wonders.  The interesting thing about adding Faxi waterfall to that trip is the possibility to be in proximity to the flowing stream of water.  The waterfall is also wide and high enough to be quite impressive.  For people that have rarely seen a waterfall, it is a joy both sight and sound.

Access to Faxi waterfall Faxafoss is easy all year round

If you are driving from Reykjavík the capital you take the road Vesturlandsvegur Road Nr. 1 through the town Mosfellsbær.  On the edge of Mosfellsbær you take the Road Nr. 361 Þingvallavegur.  When you are passed the lake Þingvallavatn you take a turn west on Road Nr. 365 Lyngdalsheiðavegur. When you come to the small village Laugarvatn you continue on Road Nr. 37 Laugarvatnsvegur until you turn on Road Nr. 35 that will take you to the Faxi waterfall.

 

Faxi waterfall is part of the Golden Circle Drive

Deep in the Highland of Iceland you will find a very remote and highly interesting place, Kverkfjöll, located at the northeast part of Vatnajokull ice cap, the largest glacier in Europe.  It is a combination of ice and magma lurking under the surface filling it with a warmth that melts the ice from beneath, forming melting ice caves at the edge of the glacier. In few places is it more obvious where fire meets ice. It is the home of Iceland's largest geothermal area, warm geothermal pools, ice caves, challenging hiking paths and harsh landscape between two glacier tongues, Brúaárjökull and Dyngjuökull that regularly deliver signs of possible eruptions.  Kverkfjöll is a place for people who are serious hikers seeking real life adventures and interested in visiting the most exotic places in Iceland. It is not a place to visit for a quick selfie or short visit. It is a place of proper preparation and sufficient gear. It is a place for outdoor enthusiasts who like to hike, ski and climb fascinating mountains.

Kverkfjöll is a place of many options

As part of the Icelandic highland, it is a highly sensitive place in any respect.  Mostly covered with snow a large part of the year Kverkfjöll mountains are only accessible during the months of July through September. The area is always a bit wet and lacks vegetation.  Even in those three months, it is a place where you need to take extreme care when visiting.  Because of its many attractions and natural wonders Kverkfjöll has a good service center, available accommodation, and a camping area. It is an “out of this world” place to visit but harsh and unpredictable. 

Access is not easy and requires a full-size 4X4 vehicle

For the drive to Kverkfjöll, you need a large size 4X4 vehicle, a Toyota Hilux, Toyota Landcruiser, VW Amarok, Land Rover or similar.  It is not a road for a small 4X4 as some of the roads are difficult, and there are rivers to cross.  Rivers that can change rapidly with rain or change in heat. The best route is to drive from Mývatn lake towards the east on Road Nr. 1 and take the mountain road F88 Öskjuleið. After driving approximately 75 kilometers, among other places by Herðubreið the queen of Icelandic mountains, you take a turn on the mountain road F910 Austurleið. After driving approximately 12 kilometers on F910, you take another turn on the mountain road F902 Kverkfjallaleið. After an about 40 kilometer drive, you are at Sigurðarskáli cabin and in Kverkfjöll.  It is about 130 kilometers drive into the most remote area in the Icelandic Highland, and you are now truly in a natural wonderland of landscape and geology. 

Deep in the Highland of Iceland you will find a very remote and highly interesting place, Kverkfjöll,

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