We freaking love Iceland.
We spent a week in Iceland last November and it was probably the best week of our collected lives. Even though the weather didn’t cooperate, and we even slid off an icy road straight into the ditch, we still have one pretty freaking amazing week. We had originally planned to road trip right around the island, but it didn’t work out that way. We got as far as Jokulsarlon, the famous glacier lagoon, before we started getting to nervous with the road conditions and decided to turn back.
According to Google, it takes just over three hours to complete this driving tour, however you will find that at each spot you will be so blown away by Iceland’s natural beauty that you would want to leave. That’s why we actually recommend you spend 3 -4 days minimum on this route, depending on how many hikes you want to do in Skaftafell National Park.
Seljalandsfoss is located near to the ring road and makes a great starting point for your tour of Southern Iceland. This gorgeous waterfall has steps leading up and behind the falls, but beware you will probably get wet. The area also has a nice picnic area and flush toilets as well making it a good place for a picnic or a snack.
Skogarfoss, located near the small town of Skogar is one of Iceland’s larger waterfall with a width of 25 m and a drop of 60m. There are steps which lead up to the top of waterfall as well. There are lots of steps though, so I decided to pass. The path from the top of the waterfall connects to the famous Laugavegur to Landmannalaugar walk, but for this tour you will need to get back in your car and continue along the ring road to….
Reynisdrangur and Vík í Mýrdal
Reynisdrangur are basalt sea stacks just off the black sand beaches of Vik. The black sand beaches themselves are a fantastic attraction, and looks incredible with the patches of snow. The Reynisdrangur stacks have a colourful history. Legend has it that they are trolls who got caught out in the sun and turned into stone. No matter what they are, they are pretty incredible at sunrise.
There is a small grocery store in Vik and it is one of your last chances to stock up on provisions and petrol. There is also a great factory outlet store for Icelandic woolen and trekking products, which is really worth the stop especially if you plan to do some hiking in Skaftafell National Park,
Skaftafell is Iceland’s second largest national park and is home to a bunch of pretty awesome treks. Two day hikes definitely worth checking out are the Svartifoss walk and the Glacier walk. Svartisfoss means “black waterfall” and is named for the jagged black basalt which serve as the backdrop for this stunning waterfall. This walk is about 4 km’s return but there are some slippery sections in the winter so make sure you have sturdy shoes. A shorter and more accessible walk is the Glacier walk which is slightly shorter and quite a bit flatter. This is the walk we did as it was winter and icy when we visited, but I can’t wait to get back there and properly discover Svartifoss.
You could probably do both walks in a day, but why not stay in a village nearby and spend two days in the National Park.
Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon
We saved the best for last. Joksularlon literally translates to Glacial river lagoon… which is a pretty good description of the area. The Glacial lake is the deepest lake in Iceland and as the Iceburgs break off, they float out to the beach nearby creating one of the most picturesque part of Iceland.
This place is seriously incredible. The glacial iceburgs are pure, clear blue, which contrast amazingly with the black sand beach. It’s awesome. I can’t describe how beautiful it is…. so here is a photo….