Traveling to Aldeyjarfoss & Hrafnabjargafoss Waterfalls

Looking to dip your toes into exploring the Icelandic highlands?  As a matter of fact, two picturesque waterfalls can be found in the highlands of North Iceland.  Therefore, if you are traveling around Iceland in a 4×4 or super jeep during summer, do not miss Aldeyjarfoss and Hrafnabjargafoss Waterfalls!  Today, our team is thrilled to share with you how to find and what to expect at both.

North Iceland Wedding Locations

Once upon a time our Iceland Wedding Planner team crafted weddings and elopements in North Iceland.  Back when there little tourists, were no ropes, barriers, and signs everywhere.  However, several years ago (Circa 2015), we transitioned our focus to our base across South Iceland and into the highlands.

But do not misunderstand, we still have an incredible wealth of knowledge to share with you in regards to Northern Iceland!  For instance, you’ll find two excellent places to stay while eloping in Iceland, being Hótel Reynihlíð (now known as Icelandair Hotel Myvatn) and Brimnes Hotel & Cabins.  And a magical North Iceland wedding location of Hvítserkur Sea Arch and so many more like Aldeyjarfoss and Hrafnabjargafoss Waterfalls.

Waterfalls in North Iceland

Likely while exploring around North Iceland, you may be on the hunt for waterfalls.  Depending on the vehicle you are driving and what season you are visiting our answer on best ones to travel to will change.  For example, accessible year round is Goðafoss Waterfall (Google Map) as the parking lot is slightly off from Route 1.

More adventurous waterfalls follow, but please keep in mind they are not accessible year round because of weather in Iceland and snow levels.  So please do your research and check road conditions.

  • Dettifoss Waterfall:  Claimed to be the most powerful waterfall within Europe that also offers a hiking trail.  Google Map info to west side parking lot.  Then Google map info to east side parking lot.  Note: Both roads are not serviced and if in a standard vehicle, do not visit you’ll get into trouble.
  • Selfoss Waterfall: Further upstream from Dettifoss, you’ll find this gem by hiking from the east side parking lot.  Expect around a 30 minute hike.  Note: Selfoss Waterfall is NOT in the town of Selfoss.  Living in Selfoss, we often get folks asking where the waterfall is!  But please remember it is in North Iceland 😉
  • Aldeyjarfoss Waterfall: More info follows below!
  • Hrafnabjargafoss Waterfall: More info follows below!

Hidden Gem of North Iceland: Aldeyjarfoss

Likely, as travelers, we all try to seek out more offbeat and less touristy places to experience.  Typically in hopes of having a more intimate, authentic, and “like a local” feeling.  Visiting Aldeyjarfoss Waterfall can leave you feeling this way.  Aldeyjarfoss is found at the end of the Icelandic highland mountain road Sprengisandur.  Which is an F-Road (F-26) that literally goes right through the middle of Iceland for 144 miles.

Aldeyjarfoss Waterfall Specs:

  • 65 feet tall.
  • 10-15 minute hike from parking lot (one way).
  • Type: Basalt Column Waterfall.
  • The River which creates it is called: Skjálfandafljót.
  • Location: Bárðardalur Valley (within the Suðurárhraun lava field).
  • Google Maps Info.
  • Note: There are bathrooms on site within the parking lot.
  • Vehicle Needed: Between July-August you can visit in a 2WD (as long as it hasn’t rained a ton).  But other times of the year will require a 4×4 to super jeep (specifically in winter).  The gravel road is extremely bumpy so take it slow!

Furthermore, this waterfall can have several self driving tourists, but likely no buses.  Plus it’s a short 1 hour and 15 minute drive from the North Iceland town of Akureyri.  There is enough space for many folks exploring.  When we were there in August, there were likely 10-20 people there in the middle of the day and we still slipped away and felt like we were alone and no one in our photographs.

Aldeyjarfoss Waterfall Hike:

Hiking to Aldeyjarfoss Waterfall is super easy.  Firstly, you’ll park in the designated parking lot (you’ll see restrooms on the left side).  Secondly, you’ll follow the path down the mountain.  Please stay on the path to protect the flora, fauna, and moss trying to grow!  Thirdly, you’ll notice a a section of ropes to the left of the path, please respect it and do not go beyond.  Fourthly, you can walk right up to the cliff edge (or canyon rim) that has a stunning view of the falls.

Lastly, you can hike down to be eye level with the waterfall but ensure you have proper hiking boots, maybe even poles, and be confident in every step.  As of when this post was written there were no additional ropes, barriers, or signs detouring you from hiking further down (to where we took our drone photos of Aldeyjarfoss.

How to Get to Hrafnabjargafoss

Nearby to Aldeyjarfoss Waterfall is Hrafnabjargafoss.  In fact, it flows from the same river, just further south.  However, the biggest different between the two waterfalls is that you truly do need a 4×4 or super jeep to experience it.

In the height of summer and in the middle of the day there was only one other truck visiting at the same time as we were.  So if you are looking for an offbeat waterfall in Northern Iceland Hrafnabjargafoss is your answer!  The waterfall beams beauty from all directions.  Just be careful near the edges as you explore around.

Hrafnabjargafoss Waterfall Specs:

  • 16 feet tall.
  • 1-5 minute hike from parking lot (one way).
  • Type: Horseshoe / Block Waterfall.
  • On one of the longest rivers in Iceland, Skjálfandafljót (same river as Goðafoss too).
  • Location: Bárðardalur Valley (within the Suðurárhraun lava field).
  • Google Maps Info (on F-26).
  • Best Time to Visit: Late June-Mid September.
  • Vehicle Needed: 4×4 (F-road worthy) or super jeep.
  • Note: The parking lot is big enough for 3-4 vehicles and there no bathrooms on site.

Planning a Elopement at Aldeyjarfoss or Hrafnabjargafoss

Inspired by the idea of eloping in Iceland at Aldeyjarfoss & Hrafnabjargafoss Waterfalls or would love a similar type of experience?  We are experts at planning a waterfall wedding adventure for just the two of you or your 100+ guests!  Either way, our team would love to hear from you.  Feel free to contact us for more information on getting that adventure started!

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