Svartifoss Waterfall (What To See - South East)

Svartifoss Waterfall (What To See - South East)
Svartifoss waterfall is one of the most beautiful sights in Skaftafell, which is part of Vatnaj÷kull National Park and often is said to be one of the most magnificent waterfalls in Iceland. The name that literally means "Black waterfall" comes from the hexagonal dark basalt columns that surround the waterfall. The waterfall is small, but stunningly beautiful. It is about 20 meters tall. These kind of hexagonal column rock formations can be found in several places around Iceland such as Reynisfjara beach, Stu­lagil Canyon and Hljˇ­aklettar to name only a few. These formations also have been an inspiration for Icelandic architects through the years and can for example be seen in the HallgrÝmskirkja church and Harpa concert hall in Reykjavik.


There are many hiking opportunities in Skaftafell, starting from the visitor center and all trails are well marked. Hiking up to Svartifoss is one of the easiest options with a well maintained trail and not very demanding but that being said, it is uphill so you might want to pace yourself for that portion. You can either do a 3.8 km (2.3 miles) trip out and back to Svartifoss which you can expect to take about 1 hour 20 min plus stops you make along the way or you can do a 5.5 km (3.4 miles) circle trip taking about 2 hours plus stops along the way according to the national parks website. If you are traveling in winter, always check on the conditions of the trails at the visitor center before heading out.


The Visitors Center and Wardens station at Skaftafell is open all year round, where there is a cafÚ and restrooms. There is a good campsite located at Skaftafell and there are hotels and guesthouses nearby.

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