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What to see on your way to Fjallsárlón Glacier Lagoon

Westman Island Overview

Are you planning an Icelandic Road trip? Fjallsárlón is located right on the ring road in the southeast of the country which makes it an ideal stop along the route whether you’re hoping to loop the entire country or head out and back. But what can you see on your way to Fjallsárlón? We’ll look at a few of the places you can stop if you’re coming from Reykjavik or from Akureyri to give you some inspiration. (Photo above is from Westman Islands).

Fjallsarlon Glacier Lagoon Iceland

Fjallsárlón from Reykjavik

If you were to drive from downtown Reykjavik to Fjallsárlón, you could expect the journey to take around five hours. Most visitors wouldn’t consider doing this in one stretch; Vik is a popular choice for an overnight stop. There’s much to see and do in this part of Iceland, so here are just a few suggestions.

Seljalandsfoss

Two of Iceland’s most impressive waterfalls are situated right beside the ring road and only twenty minutes apart, so it’s hardly surprising that many visitors include them on their itinerary. Seljalandsfoss waterfall is closest to Reykjavik the capital of Iceland. The 60-metre-high waterfall drops dramatically from the highland but is particularly unusual in that it’s possible to walk behind the curtain of water. There’s also another waterfall, Gljúfrabúi, tucked within a cleft in the rock close by, if you’re prepared to get wet it’s fun to step through to get a closer look.

Seljalandsfoss Waterfall South Iceland
Elephant rock Westman Island

The Westman Islands

The point where the ring road meets Seljalandsfoss waterfall is also the point where you might turn off the main road to catch a ferry over to the Westman Islands. With its spectacular volcanic scenery from the 1973 eruption and a breathtaking coastline, you’ll want to allow a full day for this detour. The main town of Heimaey is compact enough to walk around on foot, but it’s also possible to take rental cars on the ferry. A boat ride is a fun way to see some of the rock formations and seabirds, make sure you do not miss the Elephant Rock. You can also visit a pair of rescued beluga whales at a sanctuary beside the harbour.

Skógafoss Waterfall

Skógafoss waterfall is equally tall but broader, and often has a rainbow – or two – in front of it when the sun shines. Visitors can climb a set of metal steps immediately to the east of the waterfall to view the top of the falls. If you’re planning a longer stop, there are smaller falls nearby. From Skógafoss it’s also possible to hike inland on the scenic Fimmvörðuháls trail towards Thórsmörk. Covering the whole 25km distance means you can tick off another 25 waterfalls, but it’s a long day.

skogafoss waterfall Iceland
Solheimasandur Plane wreck

Sólheimasandur plane wreck

The Sólheimasandur plane wreck is located about halfway between Skógafoss waterfall and Vik, a picturesque town. In 1973, a DC-3 belonging to the US Navy came down in bad weather. It was a cargo plane rather than a passenger service, and all the crew escaped unhurt. The plane, however, never took off again. In the intervening period, its interior has been stripped out and the elements have taken their toll, but it remains one of South Iceland’s quirkiest and most unusual sights.

Black Beach, Reynisfjara PHOTO

This beach is one of the most beautiful and yet also the most notorious in the country. Sneaker waves – those with an especially long fetch and an unexpected reach – have lot of power and can easily sweep a person off their feet. This is a place to come on a fine day; so long as you don’t turn your back on the ocean, there’s no reason not to enjoy a safe visit. This black sand beach is backed by a huge cliff formed of basalt columns, making it especially striking.

Black Beach South Iceland
Katla Glacier 1

Kötlujökull

Glaciers are the reason for setting your sights on Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon, but each one is very different, so it’s understandable if you’re keen to see more than one. If you’re keen to see inside an ice cave, those further east are likely to have the dazzling vivid blue, translucent ice that gives them the wow factor. But such caves are unstable when the weather warms up and can usually only be visited from November to March. If you’re travelling outside these times, consider booking an ice cave trip up on Kötlujökull as these can be visited year-round. Travel from Vik on a super jeep; don crampons and helmet to hike the final stretch.

Skaftafell National Park

The road continues east to Skaftafell, a protected area that forms part of Vatnajökull National Park. This is where you’ll find another remarkable waterfall, Svartifoss. It’s flanked by basalt columns and is almost symmetrical, so you’re sure to want to bring a camera. The hike to reach it passes other waterfalls and it’s also possible to visit a cluster of turf houses called Sel. You’re close to Fjallsárlón now; the road loops around the highland area in which you’ll find Hvannadalshnúkur, Iceland’s highest peak, and in 40 minutes or so you’ll have reached your destination. (photo hidden waterfall in Skaftafell).

Skaftafell waterfall hidden hike

Fjallsárlón from Akureyri

Not everyone travels anti-clockwise around the ring road, so it’s feasible that you might find yourself approaching Fjallsárlón from the opposite direction. Let’s consider what stops you might make if you’re coming from Iceland’s second largest place, the delightful town of Akureyri in North Iceland.

Mývatn lake Iceland

Mývatn Lake

Mývatn (Midge Lake) is one of Iceland’s most scenic bodies of water. Perched on the edge of it is Mývatn Nature Baths, a popular geothermal bath. From here, you won’t have to drive far to reach Hverir, an area of hot springs, boiling mud pots and fumaroles. The sculpted rock formations of Dimmuborgir (Black Fortress) are also worth stopping for. In winter, this lava field is where you’ll find Iceland’s infamous Yule Lads. Hverfjall, crater offers an easy hike around the brim of the crater.

Stuðlagil Canyon

For many years, the striking basalt columns that flank Stuðlagil Canyon were hidden underwater. The construction of a hydro-electric plant upstream resulted in a fall in the level of the river, revealing the area’s splendid geology. But that’s not all: for part of the year, the water that flows through this steep-sided gorge is an extraordinarily bold shade of blue. It’s a short detour off the ring road but you’ll definitely be glad you chose to hike to this stunning place.

Studlagil Canyon Iceland
Borgarfjordur Eystri puffins

Seyðisfjörður and Borgarfjörður Eystri

The East Fjords receive relatively few visitors but many of those that do come end up in one of these two settlements. Seyðisfjörður is where the ferry arrives from Denmark and the Faroe Islands. It’s pretty little church is reached along a cute rainbow street and a clutch of historic buildings line the edge of the fjord. Borgarfjörður Eystri attracts puffin-lovers throughout the summer season. These comical, colourful seabirds nest in the grassy cliff beside the harbour. Another sizeable colony can be seen at Hafnarhólmi.

Stokksnes and Vestrahorn Mountain

The mountain Vestrahorn, standing 454 metres tall, is one of Iceland’s most recognisable peaks. Its jagged contours contrast beautifully with the softness of the dune grasses that anchor the sandy beach that surrounds the bay in front of it at Stokksnes. During the darker months, it’s also a popular spot with aurora hunters as the Northern Lights are often seen dancing overhead. Located about 1 hour and 20 minutes from Fjallsárlón, this area is must-see.

vestrahorn Iceland
hofn-harbor iceland

Höfn í Hornafirði

The fishing port of Höfn is the first significant town east of Fjallsárlón. You’ll find it just over an hour to the east. So, like Vik, it’s a popular overnight choice. There are a number of historic buildings to admire near its harbour. The town also houses several good restaurants. In June, it celebrates its most popular food with an annual lobster festival.

Whichever way you approach Fjallsárlón, you can see there’s plenty to see along the way, so remember to allow plenty of time in your itinerary so you don’t miss a thing.

OUR TOURS

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5-6 hours

29.900 ISK

May - Nov

Your multi adventure starts with a calm boat ride on Fjallsarlon glacier lagoon. Following the boat ride, you’ll land at the foot of Fjallsjokull glacier, a place we have secluded access to. After the glacier hike, you will walk to a jeep for a fun 15-20 min. return drive.

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75-90 min

10.100 ISK

Apr - Nov

Sail with us in a Zodiac boat, amongst floating icebergs on the majestic Fjallsarlon Glacier Lagoon. This adventure tour will allow you to connect with the Icelandic nature in a way you have never experienced before. Come, have fun and cruise with us!

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4 hours

19.800 ISK

May - Nov

Embark on an extraordinary adventure on our glacier hike. This tour is perfect for adventurers who like to go off the beaten path as this journey takes you through untouched, alluring landscape to Fjallsjökull glacier.

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Overnight

155.000 ISK

May - Oct

Immerse yourself in the spectacular Icelandic wilderness and spend a memorable night on the lagoon. The magnificent view over the glacier lagoon towards Vatnajökull Glacier, the largest glacier in Europe is sure to impress even the most experienced traveler!

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75-90 min

101.000 ISK

Apr - Nov

On this private tour you can decide along with your captain how your cruise evolves. Cruise among icebergs and sail beside the glacier wall in your own style! This tour is popular with couples, friends & families who want to share an adventure in a private and personal way.

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2 hours

255.000 ISK

Apr - Oct

Cruise to a secret island located close to the edge of the glacier in the lagoon. Set foot on land that only few have entered! Sip champagne and take in the magnificent view towards Vatnajokull Glacier, the largest glacier in Europe. Create memories that will last a lifetime.

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3,5-4,5 hours

24.500 ISK

Nov – Mar

Explore the Icelandic wilderness on our way to a blue ice cave located in Breidarmerkurjokull glacier outlet.
Ice caves are a natural wonder that every adventurer should behold.

BLUE ICE GLACIER HIKE

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3-4 hours

21.900 ISK

Encounter the extraordinary by joining our exclusive glacier hike! This trip is tailored for those who seek adventure, are physically fit, and have a deep desire to explore the untouched, rugged attraction of Fjallsjökull glacier.

Fjallsarlon Iceberg Boat Tour Iceland

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