Gufufoss, Iceland

Reykjavík is the city that many people will check out when visiting Iceland, and many of the attractions are in the general vicinity of Reykjavík. If you have a chance to head out, you’ll find a plethora of other amazingness! On the opposite side of the country/island, you’ll find Egilsstaðir. Since most of the population is in Reykjavík, there aren’t many people in Egilsstaðir, though you’ll find all of the necessary amenities.

Gufufoss in June 2012

Fardagafoss is on the outskirts of Egilsstaðir. If you continue along Road 93 toward Seyðisfjörður, you’ll start climbing an overpass. I remember the rental car I was driving making alert noises that the temperature was dropping. It wasn’t wildly warm to begin with in June. As you start heading downhill, it does start to get warmer. Gufufoss “appears” shortly after starting downhill, so I recall it was chilly and windy when stopping to view Gufufoss. You may be able to get the sense of how windy since the water was being blown by the wind.

There is a pull-off to view the falls on the right side of the road (if you’re headed toward Seyðisfjörður). Gufufoss is difficult to view as you’re heading downhill, and you may suddenly notice it in your rearview mirror. One option is to pull off if you recognize the parking area. The other option is to go into Seyðisfjörður. You have to head back up Road 93 unless you’re never leaving Seyðisfjörður, so heading uphill, you’ll see the falls and then you can pull over.

Directions:

  1. From the Ring Road 1, take Road 92 and drive through Egilsstaðir. (If you’re driving south, it would be a left turn.)
  2. After a short distance, turn left onto Road 93.
  3. Drive on Road 93 for a short distance, and then veer (turn) right to continue along Road 93. (Don’t continue forward on Road 94.)
  4. Continue along Road 93 over the mountain pass and head toward Seyðisfjörður. Look for the waterfall on the south side of the road.

Accessibility: 10/10 (easy)
Height: 39′
Length of Hike: roadside

Where in the World is Gufufoss?

Fardagafoss, Iceland

The lower portion of Fardagafoss (June 2012)

Iceland has so many easy-to-visit waterfalls, and Fardagafoss is another addition to that list! I guess I should first say this assumes that you’ve driven the 404 miles from Reykjavík to Egilsstaðir (or flown that distance). It’s an amazing drive around Iceland’s Ring Road. But once you’re in Egilsstaðir, a charming town, you’re only a short distance from Fardagafoss. It’s just 2 miles or so outside of the town, and from the trail, you can get a great view of the town.

There are two (maybe three, depending on how you count) drops along the river, and I’ve decided to keep them together instead of calling them Upper and Lower Fardagafoss. About 1/4 of a mile from the parking area, you’ll come along the first drop. You’ll be viewing the falls from above, and there seems to be absolutely no plausible way to get the base of the falls. I wouldn’t even try!

If I remember correctly, you can see the upper falls pretty easily as you’re hiking along, but to get closer, you’ll hike another 3/8 of a mile or so. You are climbing uphill, though it’s not extremely steep. I distinctly remember there being no distinct trail, but instead many faint trails that led to the falls. I’m not sure this is great for the landscape, but there aren’t any signs to direct anyone. The vegetation doesn’t grow very tall, so it is very easy to scamper through the area, likely why there are so many paths.

It’s honestly another great waterfall to visit while you’re in Iceland. There aren’t many disappointing ones!

Directions:

  1. From the Ring Road 1, take Road 92 and drive through Egilsstaðir. (If you’re driving south, it would be a left turn.)
  2. After a short distance, turn left onto Road 93.
  3. Drive on Road 93 for a short distance, and then veer (turn) right to continue along Road 93. (Don’t continue forward on Road 94.)
  4. Drive another 2 miles or so along Road 93 to the parking area for the falls, which will be a gravel area on your right. There is a sign for the falls, and it was relatively difficult to miss.

(If you keep driving along Road 93, you can visit Gufufoss and see other minor waterfalls along the way to Seyðisfjörður.  There’s a rather tall waterfall behind some houses in Seyðisfjörður that you can photograph easily from afar.)

Accessibility: 8/10 (easy/moderate)
Height: ~160′ (or more) over the two drops
Length of Hike: 1.4 miles round-trip

The upper portion of Fardagafoss

Where in the World is Fardagafoss?