About Budararfoss and the Seydisfjordur Waterfalls
Buðarárfoss and the Seyðisfjörður Waterfalls are what I’m clumping into this page to acknowledge the numerous waterfalls to be seen here.
Most of the waterfalls are mountain cascades converging towards the valley and the fjord of Seyðisfjörður.
However, I’ve singled out Buðarárfoss since it’s perhaps the most intimate and conspicuous of the waterfalls in town, but it also played a role in the area’s recent history with a severe landslide in December 2020.
What Happened In Seyðisfjörður?
Indeed, when we visited Seyðisfjörður in August 2021 (14 years after the first time which was when the photo above was taken), I noticed that a lot has changed aboout the town.
I couldn’t put my finger on what had changed until a sign near what looked like a construction site on the east end of town pretty much spelled it out for me.
That sign board showed before and after pictures of what happened just 8 months prior to our recent trip.
We noticed that Seyðisfjörður had built up a lot of avalanche chutes high up on the mountains surrounding the area to slow their momentum.
However, the landslide that happened which was said to be a once-in-a-thousand-year event was the result of unprecedented saturation rains.
Such rains were the heaviest in any five-day stretch in Iceland’s recorded history (569mm of cumulative rainfall in 5 days compared to 860mm of average rainfall over 365 days in Reykjavík).
The landslides destroyed 10 buildings, and they were primarily around the Buðarárfoss Waterfall.
When my Mom and I did a short 1.5km loop morning walk, that was when we saw things like giant boulders out-of-place in the middle of people’s lawns, water-damaged buildings, and rock-lined water channels lining the Buðará Stream.
It looked like the town was still recovering from the damages of that fateful event that was likely the result of Global Warming causing extreme weather events.
Experiencing the Seyðisfjörður Waterfalls Not On The Fjarðará River
In addition to doing a short walk taking in the Buðarárfoss, the steep-walled fjord (making me think this was the closest thing to a Norwegian Fjord) presented numerous mountain cascades.
In my mind, the most notable ones include the following…
The first one is a large cascade (I don’t know if it has an official name) tumbling beneath Mt Bólfur easily seen from the Neðri-Stafur vicinity of Route 93 descending into Seyðisfjörður.
Other notable cascades include the ones flowing on both the Ytri and Innri Hádegisá, which can be seen while driving the lower part of Route 93 as well as from a bridge over the Fjarðará River in the center of town.
The remaining cascades are pretty much random side cascades on both sides of the steep-walled valley that I have lost track of since such cascades were too numerous to count.
I’m sure there are others that I’ve missed, but this should give you a sense of how concentrated the waterfall display can be here (especially during the thaw or during rain).
Buðarárfoss and the Seyðisfjörður Waterfalls reside in the East Region of Iceland. It is administered by the municipality of Múlaþing. For information or inquiries about the general area as well as current conditions, you may want to try visiting their website
This page covers the stretch of Route 93 facing Seyðisfjörður as well as some of the local roads in the town itself.
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