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Epic Road-Trip Chasing Iceland Waterfalls

Epic Road-Trip Chasing Iceland Waterfalls

Iceland Waterfalls

Epic Road-Trip Chasing Iceland Waterfalls

I spent 12 days with a group of people roaming the untamed nature of Iceland, exploring its vast green land, chasing breathtaking Iceland waterfalls, tasting century old glaciers, and mesmerizing over beaches covered in black sand. Nothing could have prepared me for what I experienced. It was truly an adventure of a lifetime.

My hope for this post is to do justice to the beauty I became mesmerized with and to inspire you to explore it too. I thought of keeping Iceland as my secret destination but I can’t not share something so magical.

I have broken down Iceland into different posts:

 

Iceland Road Trip

Day 1 – Reykjavik

Our journey started in Reykjavik. We grabbed a quick bite at the Perlan and checked into our hotel, Fosshotel Reykjavik. We started roaming immediately but as eager as we were to take off and explore every corner of this fascinating city, we needed to rest and prepare for our trip ahead. I ventured off and enjoyed the summer’s late sunset. It was mind blowing to be walking around at 10pm and still see sunlight. The sun finally set around 11pm.

Day 2 – Golden Circle

Early morning risers off to explore the Golden Circle! This was the perfect intro spot for the trip; if you are short on time, Golden Circle is ideal to sample Iceland’s nature. 

Day 3 – Myvtn – Hraunfossar

We embarked on a six-hour drive on Route 1 to Myvtn on the Northern part of the country (the most northern I’ve been yet). On the way, we stopped at Hraunfossar, an iconic area surrounded by Iceland waterfalls that stream out from a lava field created from an eruption of one of the volcanoes lying under the glacier. Although the waterfalls were not the tallest nor the most powerful, they were certainly full of character.

One great thing about traveling with a group of photographers is that they are always leaving their comfort zone to attain the perfect shot. We climbed down the cliff to get as close as possible to the waterfall. The cliff was very muddy and unstable. If it wasn’t for the help of one of the photographers, who happened to be a pro climber, I wouldn’t have been able to come back up for a while. After turning my black pants into brown, I shot my favorite images of Iceland!

Myvtn is not only referred to the lake but also to the surrounding area. Check out their site and this list for things to do.

Iceland Myvtn

Day 4 -Namafjall Hverir – Dimmurborgir

Like the smell of rotten eggs? Want to feel like you are in “The Martian”? Welcome to Namafjall Hverir! The sulfuric smell emanating from the mud pods was so strong but the experience was worth it. The sharp color contrast of grays and brown, the fuming steam, and vast field showcases the illusion that you are exploring terrain on another planet. After breathing in the intoxicating scents, we headed towards Dimmurborgir – a uniquely shaped lava field located about an hour East of Myvtn.

 Day 5 – Dettifoss

Started the day with excitement yet again! The destination of choice was the most powerful of Iceland waterfalls, Dettifoss. This is where I truly began grasping the majestic nature of Iceland. The force of this waterfall can be felt through the vibrations of the rocks surrounding it! Dettifoss is untamed territory so you may explore as close or as far away as desired. Alas, the adventure begins – a group of guys and I ventured onto the edge of the rocks to get a close shot. The water splashed against us like furious rain. The mist covered our clothes and gear. I still can’t describe the feeling of sitting on the edge of one of the most iconic Iceland waterfalls.

The best thing about going on a road trip is that you can stop at any point. Chasing beauty in Iceland is hard. Not because of scarcity but because of pure abundance of it! It’s human nature to want to see it all, so why stick to a schedule? Add some spontaneity in your repertoire! We stopped twice to admire the plethora of beauty surrounding us. First, the waterfall was up high so we climbed it. The second stop was my favorite waterfall and probably my fave spot (it’s hard to choose one in Iceland) but the location was so quiet and majestic. The waterfall was a bit nestled but once close to it, you can enjoy all of its beauty. Cherry on top? A double rainbow glistening amid the water and sky. Familiar with what I’m describing? Contact me – would love to know the names of this place!

Beauty in Iceland Waterfalls

Iceland Waterfalls

Back on schedule…we finally arrived at a small town in the south-east region of Iceland. A few miles away from the small fisherman town Höfn.

Day 6 – Jokulsarlon – Höfn

In the morning, we headed to Jokulsarlon to admire the glaciers. There are two type of tours in Jokulsarlon: the Amphibian and the Zodiac. The latter takes you up close to the majestic (can’t stop using this word, so fitting though!) glaciers and the Amphibian takes you around the lake. I went on the Zodiac tour and geared up in what I can only describe as a space suit (ok it’s a dry suit), and marched in slow motion towards the speed boat like we were in Armageddon, ready to take over. We boarded the little speed boat and headed toward the big glacier. The glaciers are hundreds of years old. We got to pick up some of the floating ice. Our tour guide was cool enough to get us extremely up close to a big floating iceberg; we even gave it a little bump. After our adventure exploring the glaciers, we headed back to town. A few of us had lunch at Pakkhus, in little fisherman town of Höfn. The food was delicious, as I suspected since everything in Iceland has been.

Lunch at Höfn

Höfn Iceland

After Sunset

We headed back to Jokulsarlon late afternoon. This place was even more beautiful during sunset. The ice washed up on the beach and the sky was completely tinted with pink and purple hues. Iceland didn’t cease to amaze us.

Jokulsarlon Iceland

Day 7 – Vik

We continued our trip to the south of Iceland, to the town of Vik. On our way, we spontaneously stopped to gaze at more glaciers. After 6 1/2 days of beautiful weather, surprising due to Iceland’s temperamental weather, we received the dreaded torrential rain and windstorm. There was no deterring us so we continued towards Black Sand Beach Vik. I admit, it was not the best time to try to spot Puffins, but we were still graced by their presence. We took cover in the cave but were not the only ones struggling to take pictures as a sad bride and her photographer took cover in the cave as well. The sky was dark grey, the water was just as dark, and the black sand gave the illusion that that we were seeing an infinity gradient of darkness. As gloomy as it may sound, it was simply spectacular. 

Vik Icealand

Day 8 – Skogafoss – Sólheimasandur

We woke up early in the morning and headed to another of Iceland waterfalls, Skogafoss. As a very popular tourist spot, I highly recommend you go as early as possible to avoid the crowd. It’s hard to pick favorites in Iceland but this was definitely on the top 5. I climbed the stairs to the top, realized how badly in shape I was, and got an amazing view of the waterfall. Since it was basically empty, I got to shoot from various angles.  After hours of bumpy roads, we arrived at Sólheimasandur plane crash sight (an airplane ran out of gas and crashed at this site). The odd thing is that the plane was left there. Afterwards, we headed to the port to take the ferry to Heimaey Island.

Iceland Waterfalls

Photo by Nick Sharples

Sólheimasandur

Day 9 – Heimaey

We spent the day exploring the small island of Heimaey and did some hiking through the lava fields. A separate post will be coming soon!

Heimaey, Icealnd

Day 10 – Volcanic Moss Field

We took the ferry back to mainland and headed back to Reykjavik to complete our road trip. On our way, we stopped at a vast volcanic moss field which can take up to 1000 years to grow. According to the Icelandic people, trolls and elves live under the moss. One of us went in search for them…  

Iceland Volcanic Moss Field

Days 11 and 12

We spent our last two days in Reykjavik. It felt very sad to say goodbye not only to this amazing amazing nature but to the people I bonded with while on tour. I will never forget the handsomest Icelandic horses, the mouthwatering food, Iceland waterfalls, their hip capital…Iceland surely holds a special place in my heart. . 

If you want deets on specifics of my photography, leave a comment below and I will try to create a post. Keep in mind, I’m not a professional, just an enthusiast. 


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  1. […] Epic Road-Trip Chasing Iceland Waterfalls […]

  2. Claire

    16 April

    I haven’t yet had the chance to go, but I’m always fascinated by posts about Iceland. It’s such a unique place and the pictures are always stunning! Your ones of the glacier are amazing!

    • Diana

      18 April

      Awe thank you for your kind words! Yes, it is very beautiful. One of my favorite place in the world!

  3. Maggie

    16 April

    Beautiful photography! I had no idea Iceland had so many waterfalls! I’d love to visit someday.

    • Diana

      18 April

      Thank you Maggie! Yes, there were so many even 12 days in Iceland is not enough to cover them all!

  4. Hi Diana

    Wow! Truly amazing pictures. I so want to go to Iceland. I’ve seen many pictures of that beautiful country already and the more I see, the more I wanna go there. Hope to make it happen soon.

    Cheers,
    Reni

    • Diana

      18 April

      Thank you Reni so much! Yes, definitely a must! You will not want to leave!

  5. Oh yes! Iceland is becoming quite popular on the tourist trail now. And for good reason. I’ve heard all about it’s natural beauty!

    • Diana

      18 April

      Yes, WOW airline made it very affordable and now they are doing “free layover” were you stop for a few days and then take the flight to your final destination. Everybody should visit it!

  6. Bernard Tan

    17 April

    This is an awesome guide, I would love to head to Iceland soon! This would help me in my planning!

    • Diana

      18 April

      Thanks! Yes, I only wish I could stay longer than 12 days. It’s so beautiful!

  7. I recently shared my Iceland itinerary on my site! I went last July and already have the itch to go back. It’s such a beautiful, mesmerizing place with its jagged coastlines, green expanses, and breathtaking falls.

    I loved seeing your photos from your photo — you have such a great style. The way you captured the light and clouds brought through the magical, sometimes eerie feel of the country.

    • Diana

      18 April

      I know. I didn’t want to leave Iceland!! Is one of those places that may not have deep history like some other part of Europe but the natural beauty is so breathtaking.

      Awee Thank you! I enjoyed seeing yours too! I love to seeing other people pictures’ of Iceland and relive it form a different perspective. Can’t wait to go back.

  8. Lisa

    17 April

    Beautiful pics! Iceland is on the bucket list for sure. Love all the outdoor acitivites.

    • Diana

      18 April

      Thanks Lisa! Iceland should be on every body’s bucket list!

  9. ash

    18 April

    I’m hearing a lot about Iceland at the moment. Looks interesting, if not a little cold!`

    • Diana

      18 April

      Yes, it’s a bit cold even in the summer but so worth it!

  10. CassTravels

    18 April

    What amazing pictures!! I made it to Iceland for the first time this year, but only to Reykjavik sadly. Hopefully I’ll see some falls on my next trip.

  11. Alex

    18 April

    Iceland is definitely a rising star as a travel destination. Thanks for all the great information and pics. Looking forward to the next part.

  12. Jojo

    28 April

    Hi Diana! This is the perfect post for what I imagine Iceland to be! I am only going for 4 full days and 2 half days (flying in and out) so I plan to explore the south first.

    Do you think I would be able to explore Jokulsarlon by myself without doing a tour? Would I still be able to get to everything?

    Did the group you went with people you knew or did you join a group somewhere?

    (BTW love the design of your site!)

    • Diana

      28 April

      Hi Jojo! I think you could get away without a tour, but given that you will only be there for 4 full days, I would say take advantage of it. Is not a major tour but basically a little boat that takes you around the lake and the Zodiac takes you up close to the glaciers. If you take the Zodiac you get up close as you can see in my pictures

      I went with a photography tour which helped me discover places I don’t think I would have on my own. It was pretty cool.

      Thank you so much! I’m glad you like it. It took me so long to finally be happy with the look of the blog 🙂

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