Iceland-Waterfalls, October 23, 2022

Sunday, October 23, 2022
The Ring Road-Waterfalls, Lava Centre, Black Sand Beach and Glaciers

We're up early at our hotel in Selfoss. Hótel Selfossi offers views of  Ölfusá and Ingólfsfjall. While we only got to enjoy them briefly before loading up the van, it was still a beautiful morning.

We're back on The Ring Road and looking forward to seeing some waterfalls.

It's a bit chilly and foggy but we're all hoping the day will clear up for us.

Our first stop is to Urriðafoss, which means sea trout waterfall. On the river Þjórsá in southwest Iceland. With a flow rate of 360 m³/s, it has the highest average water flow of any waterfall in Iceland, and the second highest in Europe behind the Rheinfall.

It's a bit slippery, especially where new tarmac has been put down so we cautiously walk on the edges of the pathway, enjoying the early morning light on the river.

Back in the van and we're heading to the Lava Centre. We can see Eyjafjallajökull in the distance.

The Lava Centre is an interactive exhibit all about the volcanoes of Iceland. They have some stunning photos of previous eruptions and even have a movie loop of the volcanic activity on Iceland.

They also offer rooftop viewing of the local volcanoes.


But today is about waterfalls so we continue along The Ring Road for our next adventure-Seljalandsfoss. 

Seljalandsfoss is 60 m (197 ft) high and is part of the Seljalands River that has its origin in the volcano glacier Eyjafjallajökull. The highlight here is you can walk BEHIND the waterfall.

Pretty cool, right? Well it was cool but also VERY icy and slippery. We made it out but were quite muddy.

I actually preferred the waterfall next to the big one.

We're a little wet from the spray but we'll dry off in the van on our way to our next waterfall. But first some otherworldly views along The Ring Road.


Skógafoss according to Wiki "is a waterfall on the Skógá River in the south of Iceland at the cliff marking the former coastline. 

After the coastline had receded (it is now at a distance of about 5 kilometres (3 miles) from Skógar), the former sea cliffs remained, parallel to the coast over hundreds of kilometres, creating together with some mountains a clear border between the coastal lowlands and the Highlands of Iceland. 

It is one of the biggest waterfalls in the country, with a width of 25 metres (82 feet) and a drop of 60 m (200 ft). Due to the amount of spray the waterfall consistently produces, a single or double rainbow is normally visible on sunny days."

According to legend, the first Viking settler in the area, Þrasi Þórólfsson, buried a treasure in a cave behind the waterfall. The legend continues that locals found the chest years later, but were only able to grasp the ring on the side of the chest before it disappeared again. The ring was allegedly given to the local church. The old church door ring is now in the Skógar museum. (see below).

Skogar Museum

Skogar Museum first opened on December 1, 1949. It has grown into a cultural heritage collection of 18,000 regional folk craft artifacts exhibited in 3 museums and 6 historical buildings. 
They boast having THE RING from the Viking treasure chest mentioned above.

They have on display many artifacts from early Icelandic life.

Skógar Church's exterior is new but the interior dates back to the late 1800s.

Back on the road and we're treated to some stunning views of a glacier that hides Katla as we make our way to Dyrhólaey and the black sand beach with the basalt columns.

Reynisdrangar are basalt sea stacks near the black sand beach of Reynisfjara near Vik. Legend says that the stacks originated when two trolls dragged a three-masted ship to land unsuccessfully and when daylight broke they became needles of rock.

The black sand beach.

The basalt columns.

Fun fact:
Reynisdrangar appears several times throughout Netflix's Icelandic original series Katla, and is particularly significant to the series' protagonist Gríma as the site of her mother's death.

Dyrhólaey or "door island" can be seen on the other end of the beach.

On our way to our hotel for the night, we pass through the largest lava field in the world. Moss is growing on it now but it's taken years for the moss to establish a foothold.  

The clouds have lifted some are we are treated to a fantastic view of  the  Vatnajokull glacier in the distance.

Tonight we are staying at the Hótel Klaustur in Kirkjubaejarklaustur.  

Kirkjubæjarklaustur is located between two of Iceland’s most famous glaciers, Vatnajökull and Mýrdalsjökull. Several tourist attractions are situated near the town, including Vatnajökull national park, the canyon Fjadrargljufur, the Laki craters, the Church floor, the Dwarf Rocks and the Glacial Lagoon.

We're having dinner in the hotel tonight and then it's off to bed. Another 8:30 a.m. lobby call for our next adventure-The Glacier Lagoon and Diamond Beach with a few surprises thrown in to.

Too cloudy for Northern Lights-DANG!

More photos: CLICK HERE

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