Skogafoss

Skógar / Southern Ring Road, South Region, Iceland

Rating: 4.5     Difficulty: 1
Skógafoss
Skogafoss (or more accurately Skógafoss; "SKOH-ga-foss") probably rivals Gullfoss as Iceland's most famous waterfall. This was a classically-shaped rectangular waterfall that dropped 60m with a width of 25m, and it was this feature that prompted Julie to call this her favorite waterfall in the country. Adding to its allure was that it had a high volume of water making it thunder and produce rainbow-yielding mist that often would make this falls a photographer's dream under sunny skies.

Perhaps a major reason why the falls was so popular was that it was very easy to access. Thus, it wasn't surprising to see lots of people as well as tour buses. The presence of camping also helped its popularity, I'm sure. But it was a very flat and tame scramble along the river's banks that led us right up to the wall of water. Getting so close to the base of such a large waterfall was quite rare in our waterfalling experiences.

The official path climbed alongside the cliffs surrounding the recess containing the falls to yield precarious top down views of not only the waterfall but also the view towards the Atlantic Ocean as well. This trail also continued further up the Skoga River where there were many more waterfalls.

During the three days we were staying in Skógar, we were hoping for a little bit of morning sun so we could get that classic photograph of the falls with a rainbow. Unfortunately, we were pretty unlucky with the weather and we never got that nice photo of Skogafoss with blue skies and bold rainbows. Maybe better luck next time...

Finally, I looked up my Icelandic dictionary to try to learn the meaning of the name of this waterfall, and it said that "skógur" meant "forest". If that's the case, then this would be "Forest Falls", but given the lack of trees in the area during our visit, it might suggest that perhaps the area once did harbor a forest (something we only saw in East Iceland).

Directions: Look for this easy-to-spot waterfall along the Ring Road about 105km east of Selfoss (the town) and 103km west of Kirkjubæjarklaustur. There should be ample parking.




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PHOTO JOURNAL
Closer look at the thundering wall of water courtesy of Skogafoss
About 20km to the east of Skogafoss are the gorgeous sea arches and cliffs by the bluff of Dyrhólaey
Our visit to Dyrhólaey surprised us with bonus arches like this thin lava arch backed by the Reynisdrangar in the distance
This was a distant view of Skogafoss from the Ring RoadThis was a distant view of the falls from the Ring Road

Walking the riverbed towards the base of SkogafossWalking the riverbed towards the base of the falls

Folks right in front of SkogafossFolks right in front of Skogafoss

Flowers were blooming during our visitFlowers were blooming during our visit

There were definitely campers around SkogafossThere were definitely campers around the falls

If you didn't walk on the river's bank, then this would be the official trail to the base of SkogafossIf you didn't walk on the river's bank, then this would be the official trail to the base of the falls

View of Skógafoss from the other side of the riverView of the falls from the other side of the river. This was a less used road and it might be because it leads to farms.

This was as far as we went on the other side of the river.  As you can see, Skógafoss starts to get cut off againThis was as far as we went on the other side of the river. As you can see, Skógafoss starts to get cut off again

The path to the top of SkogafossThe path to the top of the falls

Looking over the top of Skogafoss towards an adjacent mountainLooking over the top of the falls towards an adjacent mountain

Looking downstream from the top of SkogafossLooking downstream from the top of the falls

If you go up to the top of Skogafoss, you can look across its top as shown hereIf you go up to the top of Skogafoss, you can look across its top as shown here

An interesting side attraction to Skógafoss are the turf farms at SkógasafnAn interesting side attraction to Skógafoss are the turf farms at Skógasafn

Approaching the lighthouse atop DyrhólaeyApproaching the lighthouse atop Dyrhólaey. This gorgeous place is about 20km east of the falls.

Looking west along the black sand beach from atop DyrhólaeyLooking west along the black sand beach from atop Dyrhólaey

In the rare instances when the sun finally showed itself while we were near Skogafoss, the waters of Dyrhólaey had a beautiful color to themIn the rare instances when the sun finally showed itself while we were near Skogafoss, the waters of Dyrhólaey had a beautiful color to them

Wildflowers were also in bloom during our visit to DyrhólaeyWildflowers were also in bloom during our visit to Dyrhólaey


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VIDEOS OF THE FALLS

Profile view of the beautiful South Icelandic waterfall with blooming wildflowers swaying in its mist


Sweep of the scene from the top of the falls all the way to the coast


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MAP OF THE FALLS

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TRIP REPORTS
For more information about our experiences with this waterfall, check out the following travel stories.




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TRIP PLANNING RESOURCES



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NEARBY WATERFALLS


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Skogafoss in February, 2012 Not rated yet
Skogafoss in February

Skogafoss in February, 2012 Not rated yet
We visited Skogafoss in February this year, it's next to a very interesting museum of houses - we waded through the snow to get to them all!

This is sad (Skogafoss) Not rated yet
I went with my cousin to Iceland . We went to see Skogafoss but he got excited and ran to the edge of rock where we were, and when he reached the edge …

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