Iceland's East Region Waterfalls
The East Region (Austurland) was a part of Iceland that somehow seemed to be somewhat forgotten when compared to the rest of the country. It definitely felt like a large portion of this section was well off the tourist radar, and even the numerous abandoned farms we managed to see in the region were perhaps a testament to how difficult life must have been here. Then, we happened to visit the area when there was some serious controversy concerning the hydroelectric developments at Kárahnjúkar.
In any case, we came into this region without expectations, and we came away pleasantly surprised at some of the scenery and features that we found here. Among them were the waterfall-laden Seyðisfjörður as well as the glacier arms of the vast Vatnajökull glacier giving rise to such features like Jökulsárlón featuring blue icebergs floating about in a glacial lagoon. There was even a forest of trees at the Hallormsstaðarskógur in this region, which was something that was noticeably missing in the rest of the country.
But when it came to waterfalls, this region held its own against the other regions of Iceland. For example, this region featured Hengifoss, which was said to be Iceland’s third tallest waterfall (at least as of 2007 when we visited). In addition, much of Skaftafell National Park also belonged to this region, and that meant the memorable Svartifoss was also included here.
Yet even though we thought we saw some pretty serious waterfalls, we learned during our visit that there were even more major waterfalls that most people wouldn’t know about. For example, Fljótsdalur featured some major waterfalls, but that meant we’d have to go even further off the beaten path to find them. Indeed, with so much unexplored, there’s bound to be more surprises, and we definitely hope to come back and uncover more things that are mysterious to us.