Wondrous Waterfalls in Iceland [60 PICS]

April 6th, 2013 Permalink

Iceland has some of the most beautiful waterfalls in the world. In fact, it seems everywhere you turn there are stunning falls of varied types such as plunge, horsetail, multi-step, segmented, punchbowl and cascade waterfalls. With frequent rain and snow and large glaciers, Iceland provides an ideal setting for falls. As snow and ice melt in summer, the volcanic and basalt Iceland is alive with magnificent and mighty waterfalls that would stun you. Winter waterfalls are sometimes frozen with an aurora borealis overhead . . . also gorgeous while looking unbelievably cold. Here are 25 different Iceland waterfalls. [60 Photos]

Seljalandsfoss is one of the most famous waterfalls in Iceland

Seljalandsfoss is one of the most famous waterfalls in Iceland. Photo #1 by Howard Ignatius

Rainbow over Gullfoss waterfall in Iceland, called Golden Falls in English

Rainbow over Gullfoss waterfall in southwest Iceland during July. It is called Golden Falls in English. About a half mile (kilometer) above the falls, the Hvítá river makes a sharp turn to the right and flows down into a wide curved three-step ‘staircase.’ Gullfoss then abruptly plunges in two stages 36 feet and 69 ft (11 m and 21 m) into a 105 feet deep (32 m) crevice that is about 60 ft (20 m) wide, and 2.5 km in length, extends perpendicular to the flow of the river. Photo #2 by O Palsson

Iceland waterfall, Golden Falls (Gullfoss) and chasm in early March

Golden Falls (Gullfoss) and chasm in early March. The photographer noted how slick the walk was and to be careful not to slip and fall into the treacherous chasm. The average amount of water running over this waterfall nearly doubles from winter to summertime. This multi-step type of waterfalls is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Iceland. Photo #3 by Carl Jones

Aldeyjarfoss waterfall in the Highlands of Iceland

Aldeyjarfoss waterfall in the Highlands of Iceland. “One of the most interesting features of the waterfall is the contrast between the black basalt columns and the white waters of the fall,” states Wikipedia. Photo #4 by Johann Dréo

Aldeyjarfoss waterfall against basalt columns and person to give an idea of its size

The photographer wanted to give you a scale of Aldeyjarfoss. Photo #5 by Jon Ragnarsson

330 ft, 100m, Dynjandi (also known as Fjallfoss) is a set of waterfalls located in Westfjords OF Iceland

With a cumulative height of 330 ft, 100m, Dynjandi (also known as Fjallfoss) is a set of waterfalls located in Westfjords of Iceland. Photo #6 by Gouldy99

330 ft, 100m, waterfall Dynjandi  means 'thunderous' in Icelandic

World of Waterfalls states, “Definitely our favorite Westfjords waterfall and we think By far the most spectacular one in the remote Westfjords (Vestfirðir) region. Befitting of this notion is that the word ‘dynjandi’ means ‘thunderous’ in Icelandic. It’s actually a series of waterfalls (seven in all) with a cumulative height of 100 m” (330 ft). Photo #7 by Gouldy99

At 387 ft (118 m), Hengifoss has been called Iceland's 3rd tallest waterfall

At 387 ft (118 m), Hengifoss has been one of Iceland’s tallest waterfalls. The thin layers of red clay between basaltic lava are fossilized trunks of coniferous trees. Seeing the people hiking toward Hengifoss helps give scale to how huge this waterfall truly is. Photo #8 by Zanthia

Below Hengifoss is another waterfall called Litlanesfoss

Below Hengifoss (left) is another waterfall called Litlanesfoss (right) which is framed with beautiful basaltic pillars. These waterfalls are in eastern Iceland, next to the biggest forest in Iceland, Hallormsstaðarskógur, and near a lake called Lagarfljót. According to Wikipedia, “As in the Scottish lake Loch Ness, a cryptid serpent, called Lagarfljótsormurinn by locals, is believed by some to live in the depths of Lagarfljót.” Photo #9 by Zanthia & #10 by Víctor Bautista

Top panorama of Dettifoss, bottom is aerial view of the waterfall taken in May

Top: Panorama of Dettifoss. Dettifoss is a 330 ft (100 m) wide waterfall located in Vatnajökull National Park in Northeast Iceland. Bottom: Aerial view, taken in May, of the waterfall dropping 150 ft (45 m) down to Jökulsárgljúfur canyon. Photo #11 by Aborchersen & #12 by Hansueli Krapf

The most powerful waterfall in Europe, Dettifoss was used in the opening scene of Prometheus the movie

Did you see the film Prometheus? The Dettifoss waterfall was used in the movie’s opening scene showing an Engineer creating life. Dettifoss is the largest waterfall in Europe in terms of volume discharge and is reputed to be the most powerful waterfall in Europe. Photo #13 by Zanthia

In western Iceland, water flows through a lava field and emerges to form a series of about 2953 ft (900 m) waterfalls called Hraunfossar

In western Iceland, water flows through about 2953 ft (900 m) of lava field and emerges to form a series of waterfalls called Hraunfossar. The lava field Hallmundarhraun is believed to have formed around 800 AD, shortly before the first settlers are recorded as making Iceland their home. Photo #14 by Enrique Domingo

Close up of Hraunfossar, which means lava falls, and the blue stream that the waterfall feeds into the blue-colored river Hvitá

Close up of Hraunfossar, which means “lava falls” and a series of springs cascading through the rough grooves of the lava. The falls feed into a blue-colored river Hvitá. Photo #15 by Federico Moroni

Literally a stone's throw upstream from Hraunfossar, is another waterfall called Barnafoss that is the subject of many Icelandic folk tales

Literally a stone’s throw upstream from Hraunfossar, along the glacial river Hvitá, is another waterfall called Barnafoss. The falls are the subject of many Icelandic folk tales, which is also why Barnafoss is known as the “children’s waterfall.” The area was declared a national monument in 1987. Photo #16 by Greg Headley & #17 by Olikristinn

There was a natural bridge over the Barnafoss waterfall, but after 2 children from a nearby farm fell to their deaths, the grief-struck mother had the bridge destroyed

The most famous Icelandic folk mythology about Barnafoss is “about two boys from a nearby farm, Hraunsás. One day, the boys’ parents went with their ploughmen to a church. The boys were supposed to stay at home, but as they grew bored they decided to follow their parents. They made a shortcut and crossed a natural stone-bridge that was above the waterfall. But on their way, they felt dizzy and fell into the water and drowned. When their mother found out what had happened, she put a spell on the bridge saying that nobody would ever cross it without drowning himself. A little while later, the bridge was demolished in an earthquake.” Photo #18 by Finnur Malmquist & #19 by Pet_r

Háifoss, meaning High Falls is Iceland's second highest waterfall

Háifoss, meaning High Falls, is Iceland’s second highest waterfall. Photo #20 by Pierre Dauwe

Háifoss, where the River Fossá falls over a cliff, stands at an incredible 122m

Háifoss plunging 400 ft (122 m) over the cliff. Photo #21 by G8w & #22 by Jonathan Tweed & #23 by Sabrina Jeremias

Seljalandsfoss Panorama

Seljalandsfoss Panorama. The photographer wrote, “The moving shadow that casts the waterfall on the mossy rock wall, beautiful and sexy.” Photo #24 by Wolf-Ulf Wulfrolf

Frozen Iceland, 200 ft Seljalandsfoss waterfall in winter

Seljalandsfoss waterfall, of the river Seljalandsá, drops 200 ft (60 m) over the cliffs of the former coastline. Here it is frozen in Icelandic winter. Photo #25 by The blanz

Morsárfoss, 227m waterfall formed from the retreat of Morsárjökull that is now Iceland's tallest

Morsárfoss, a 775 ft (227 m) waterfall formed from the retreat of the Morsárjökull glacier; it is now Iceland’s tallest falls. Morsárfoss is 90 ft (30 m) “higher than Glymur, the previous record holder. It is discovered in 2007 and its height is measured for the first time in 2011. It is located in the south, in the Vatnajökull National Park.” Photo #26 by Óðinn & #27 by Julien Carnot

Systrafoss (Sister Falls) in Kirkjubæjarklaustur

Systrafoss (Sister Falls) in Kirkjubæjarklaustur, southern Iceland. Photo #28 by L’oeil de Thomas

Gljufrafoss waterfall in south Iceland

“Gljufrafoss is a small waterfall north of the larger falls of Seljalandsfoss in Iceland. The falls are partially obscured by the cliff rock, and a winding trail and wooden ladder enable sightseers to climb roughly halfway up and view the falls,” states Wikipedia. You can walk the distance between the two falls. “Gljúrfrafoss, or chasm-waterfall, is a waterfall hidden in a small chasm accessible through this narrow passageway. One can also climb the cliff on the right and look at it from above,” wrote the photographer. Photo #29 by Richard Gould & #30 by Richard Gould

Selfoss waterfall in northern Iceland

Selfoss panorama. The photographer wrote, “Selfoss is one of Iceland’s most incredible waterfalls because it’s not just a single stream but rather a series of streams in many locations.” Wikipedia states, “Selfoss is a waterfall in the river Jökulsá á Fjöllum in the north of Iceland which drops over some waterfalls about 30 km (18 miles) before flowing into Öxarfjörður, a bay of the Arctic Sea. A few hundred meters downstream of the Selfoss waterfall (11 m high), the Dettifoss waterfall is situated, the most powerful waterfall of Europe.” Photo #31 by Simon Bonaventure & #32 by Jonathan (IceNineJon)

Frozen south Iceland and Faxi, Vatnsleysufoss, waterfall

Faxi, (or Vatnsleysufoss) waterfall is located on the Golden Circle, a popular tourist trail east of Reykjavik. The waterfall is located on the Tungufljót river.” Photo #34 by Álfheiður Magnúsdóttir

Fagrifoss waterfall

Fagrifoss in July. Fagrifoss waterfall is “situated in Southeast Iceland near the Lakagígar region. It is located along the 4×4 road F206 approximately 24 km (15 mi) from Kirkjubæjarklaustur and 40 km (25 mi) from Laki. Access to the waterfall requires the crossing of a river ford, for which a 4×4 vehicle is needed.” Photo #35 by Nicolas Lœuillet

Oxarafoss In Winter

Southern Iceland, Oxarafoss In Winter. Photo #36 by Hotelgreg11

Öxaráfoss, at Þingvellir National Park

Öxarárfoss is a small waterfall in Þingvellir National Park, Iceland. It flows from the river Öxará. The base of the waterfall is filled with rocks and is often very icy in winter. Photo #37 by Jerzystrzelecki

October view of Hjálparfoss waterfall in Iceland

October view of Hjálparfoss waterfall in Iceland. Photo #38 by Bromr from nl

June at Hjálparfoss waterfall in south Iceland

June at Hjálparfoss waterfall in south Iceland. Hjálparfoss is one of several waterfalls in the south of Iceland situated in the lava fields north of the stratovolcano Hekla near the point where the rivers Fossá and Þjórsá join.” Photo #39 by saffirahweby

Svartifoss waterfall or Black Fall in the Skaftafell National Park in south Iceland

July at Svartifoss or “Black Fall” is one of the many waterfalls of Skaftafell National Park, It’s beautifully surrounded by basalt columns. Photo #40 by aspheric.lens

Svartifoss in Winter

Wikipedia states, Svartifoss (Black Fall) is a waterfall in Skaftafell National Park in Iceland, and is one of the most popular sights in the park. It is surrounded by dark lava columns, which gave rise to its name. Other well-known columnar jointing formations are seen at the Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland, Devil’s Tower in Wyoming, USA and on the island of Staffa in Scotland. The base of this waterfall is noteworthy for its sharp rocks. New hexagonal column sections break off faster than the falling water wears down the edges. These basalt columns have provided inspiration for Icelandic architects, most visibly in the Hallgrímskirkja church in Reykjavík, and also the National Theater.” Photo #41 by Andreas Tille

Part the small canyon of Gjáin waterfall in the south of Iceland. A multitude of small waterfalls characterize the landscape

Seen here is the Gjáin fall and part the small canyon of Gjáin in the south of Iceland. A multitude of small waterfalls characterize the landscape. Photo #42 by Reykholt

Gjáin waterfall in July

Gjáin in July; it has many small waterfalls. Photo #43 by Ingunn Nielsen

Glymur, panorama of what used to be the tallest waterfall in Iceland

Glymur in the Hvalfjörður area. At 640 ft (198 m) this falls was thought to be the in Iceland, but it was surpassed with a new falls by Morsárjökull in 2011. Photo #44 by Jabbi

The waterfall Þjófafoss viewed from Merkurhraun lava fields

The waterfall Þjófafoss viewed from Merkurhraun lava fields. Photo #47 by Grunkhead

Raging Þjófafoss muddy waterfall

Same falls, Þjófafoss when raging with muddy water. Photo #48 by Ross (simpsora)

Gothafoss in Winter

Sunset at Goðafoss in Winter, Iceland. According to Wikipedia, “The water of the river Skjálfandafljót falls from a height of 39 ft (12 m) over a width of 98 ft (30 m). In the year 999 or 1000 the Lawspeaker Þorgeir Ljósvetningagoði made Christianity the official religion of Iceland. After his conversion it is said that upon returning from the Alþingi, Þorgeir threw his statues of the Norse gods into the waterfall. Þorgeir’s story is preserved in Ari Þorgilsson’s Íslendingabók. A window in the Cathedral of Akureyri (Akureyrarkirkja) illustrates this story. Named after the waterfall was MS Goðafoss, an Icelandic ship carrying both freight and passengers, that was sunk by a German U-Boat in World War II, resulting in great loss of lives.” Photo #49 by Andreas Tille

Rainbow over Goðafoss waterfall in northern Iceland

Rainbow over Goðafoss waterfall in northern Iceland. The photographer wrote, “Resistant basalt flow layers make for many, many waterfalls in Iceland.” Photo #50 by Richard Droker

South Iceland waterfall, Ofaerufoss used to be noted for the impressive natural bridge which stood above the falls, but it collapsed in 1993

“Ófærufoss is a waterfall situated in the Eldgjá chasm in central Iceland. Until the early 1990s a natural bridge spanned the falls, but it collapsed from natural causes.” Photo #51 by Natale Carioni

Ofaerufoss cascading waterfall in Iceland

Ofaerufoss, a type of cascading waterfall. Photo #52 by Mickaël Delcey & #53 by gatomato

Skógafoss (Forest Falls), a Jewel of Iceland

Skógafoss (Forest Falls), a Jewel of Iceland. Photo #54 by Chase Dekker

Skógafoss (Forest Falls), this plunge waterfall drops 197 ft (60 m) and is 82 ft (25 m) wide

Skógafoss (Forest Falls): This plunge waterfall drops 197 ft (60 m) and is 82 ft (25 m) wide. Photo #55 by Domenico (kugel) & #56 by Heather Buckley

Hafragilsfoss waterfall in Jokulsargljufur National Park, northern Iceland

Hafragilsfoss waterfall in Jokulsargljufur National Park, northern Iceland. The waterfall “has a single drop of 27 meters (89 feet) and has an average width of 91 meters (300 feet). Photo #57 by Alexander Shchukin


Closer to Hafragilsfoss, which is just below Dettifoss. Photo #58 by Alessandro Mariani

Jaw-dropping Iceland Waterfall Litlanesfoss

Litlanesfoss by Orsolya Haarberg. This waterfall is also called Hengifoss. Photo #59 by Orsolya Haarberg via All That Is Interesting

Moonshimmering Öxarárfoss waterfall and Aurora Borealis

Moonshimmering Öxarárfoss waterfall and Aurora Borealis. Photo #60 by Arnar Valdimarsson

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