Hvalfjörður Fjord (What To See - West)

Hvalfjörður Fjord (What To See - West)
Hvalfjörður Fjord, that translates as Whale Fjord is a beautiful and tranquil 30 kilometre (19 miles) long fjord that was carved out by the iceage glacier at the end of the last glacial peroid that came to an end in this part of the world about 10000 years ago. It was in the past an excellent, well sheltered and important harbor, as well as a naval base during the second world war, where the Allied merchant vessels would gather and hide, before sailing in convoys to the Soviet union, protected by larger warships. Today Hvalfjörður is a rather desolate, quiet fjord, well worth driving around for those with enough time. A popular short stop for those traveling the fjord is the Steðji Rock, also often referred to as Staupasteinn, a stone resembling a chalice. It is located on the south cost of the fjord, just east of Hvammsvík Cove and a bit hidden from the road.



The Tunnel


In the past, anyone traveling from Reykjavik up north had to drive the length of the fjord. In 1998, the most ambitious tunnel construction in Iceland was finished and now there is a tunnel under the fjord that shortened the distance from Reykjavik to the north and west by 45 km ( 28 miles) The tunnel used to be a toll road but since 2018, the tunnel is toll free.



Glymur



At the end of the fjord is the impressive Glymur, Iceland’s highest waterfall with a drop of 198 meters. The hike to the waterfall is a 6.9 km (4.3 miles ) loop. It is a bit challenging and requires crossing a river twice and a bit steep in places, so the hike is not recommended for novice hikers or without good hiking boots, however very rewarding for those up for the challenge.

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