Did you know that Iceland has over 10,000 waterfalls? Yup, it’s true. I’m constantly amazed by the fact that such a small island (Iceland is about the size of Kentucky, Cuba, or half of the UK) can have so many natural wonders. With the seemingly endless number of waterfalls, certain ones emerge as the top ten or the most popular. Skógafoss, Svartifoss, Kirkjufellsfoss, Gullfoss, Dettifoss, Godafoss; you may have heard of or read about these popular Iceland waterfalls. You probably wonder about the black waterfall in Iceland or the largest waterfall by volume or even the most photographable. Many people consider Seljalandsfoss in South Iceland to be the most beautiful waterfall in Iceland, and that’s the one I want to talk about today. Get that rain jacket ready and strap on those waterproof boots. It’s time for a virtual visit to that stunning cascade, Seljalandsfoss.
Iceland’s Most Beautiful Waterfall – Seljalandsfoss aka The Beauty
Among all of the Iceland waterfalls to choose from, Seljalandsfoss holds a particular distinction. Its nickname, The Beauty, comes from the fact that it is considered to be Iceland’s most beautiful waterfall. Its particular combination of geological features mixed with a location close to a sprawling expanse of land makes it a one of a kind sight. Waters flow from the Eyjafjallajökull volcanic glacier to make their 197 ft (60 m) drop over the former sea cliff down into the Seljalands river. You’ll find that many of the waterfalls along Iceland’s South Coast used to be sea cliffs. Glacial activity pushed the land down over time, and when they melted the coastline moved further out.
What Make Seljalandsfoss So Special
One of the cascade’s unique features is that there is a small cave facing the rear side. This makes it one of the few Iceland waterfalls you can walk behind. You’ve no doubt seen images taken from this unusual vista that show the rock arch or water falling from above at a particular angle. This is also the part of the waterfall where Justin Bieber is seen running in his Iceland music video “I’ll Show You”. Please be careful though and don’t try this if you visit. The rocks are wet, slippery, and uneven. You’re very likely to take a tumble and possibly injure yourself very badly if you run in this area. A few years ago a teenager broke their arm because they decided not to stay on the marked paths. Be smart, be safe, and don’t make the same mistakes.
How to Arrive at the Waterfall
Seljalandsfoss lies less than a mile off the Ring Road. This makes it perfect as a stop off on your way to either Reykjavik, Vik, or somewhere else along the South Coast.
Directions from to Seljalandsfoss from Reykjavik
It’s quite easy to get to Seljalandsfoss by car from Reykjavik, the country’s capital. The waterfall is actually close enough to take a day trip that encompasses Seljalandsfoss water, Skógafoss waterfall, and the Sólheimasandur plane wreck site. To arrive, head east on Iceland’s Ring Road (Route 1) for about 79 mi (127 km). It should take around an hour and forty minutes to get to the turn off for Route 249 (Þórsmerkurvegur). There isn’t a specific sign for Seljalandsfoss, but to the left you’ll see a blue and white road direction marker and a small parking lot. To the right are signs directing you either east towards Vik or west towards Reykjavik. You’ll turn left onto the road and head about half a mile (800 m) up to the main parking area. Skógafoss and Sólheimasandur beach are closer to Vík.
Directions from to Seljalandsfoss from Vík
Many people choose to explore Seljalandsfoss as part of a larger trip around Iceland’s South Coast. If that’s the case and you’re coming to the waterfall from the direction of Vik, it’s also quite easy to arrive. You’ll need to head west on the Ring Road for about 37 mi (59 km). You’ll come to the same intersection that we mention in the Reykjavik directions. Except for this time, you’ll make a right turn rather than a left.
Iceland Waterfalls – Seljalandsfoss is Iceland’s Most Beautiful
Many recognize our small island nation for its spectacular natural beauty. The Land of Fire and Ice has an abundance of waterfalls, volcanoes, glaciers, hot springs, volcanic beaches, basalt rock formations, and much more. You’ll enjoy your time here exploring all that Mother Nature has created. In addition to visiting Seljalandsfoss, Iceland’s most beautiful waterfall, be sure to make time for the black waterfall (Svartifoss), Europe’s most powerful waterfall which was featured in Ridley Scott’s cinematic masterpiece Prometheus (Dettifoss), Iceland’s waterfall on the Golden Circle route (Gullfoss), the Waterfall of the Gods (Godafoss) and all of the others. In fact, you could make your Iceland itinerary a waterfall hunting expedition. Our country is an outdoor lover’s paradise, so take full advantage while you’re here.