Finding your way to East Iceland and specifically to the little town of Seyðisfjörður? Bonus if you love chasing waterfalls too! In fact, there is a must see place just outside of the town named, Vestdalur (West Valley). There you will find the MAGICAL hike to Vestdalsfossar (West Valley Falls). Hiking the just over 3 mile loop is truly is the perfect way to spend your morning or afternoon!
Things to do in Seyðisfjörður
Firstly, you may recognize the town of Seyðisfjörður by the iconic rainbow pathway to the blue church. Secondly, heading to Seyðisfjörður is the perfect day trip from Egilsstaðir as it is only 17 miles (just under a 30 minute drive) away. Thirdly, maybe you wonder though what is there to do once you’re there? Our Iceland Wedding Planner team would love to share with you today some beautiful year round locations to explore…
- Vestdalsfossar is in our opinion the most amazing thing to do in this town. Read more about it below!
- Búðaráfoss Waterfall offers a lovely view over the town.
- Tvisongur Sound Sculpture is an ideal 20 minute hike if you love to sing, appreciate art, and 360 degree views!
- Bláa Kirkja (Blue Church) in Seyðisfjörður can be seen from the outside year round. And during summer (June-August 10-12pm and 1-5pm) you can head inside to experience it.
- Gufufoss Waterfall is right off the main road heading into Seyðisfjörður.
- Hiking to Brimnes is just over a 3 mile hike that offers stunning fjord views, an orange lighthouse and an abandoned farm.
- Bird Watching is best found on the Austdalur – Skálanes hike.
- Seven Peaks Hike is a challenge for those of you that are seasoned trekkers.
How to get to Vestdalsfossar
Vestdalur, is an unforgettable cascading waterfall valley that is under 2 miles northeast of the Seyðisfjörður town. So, your next question is how do you get there? Maybe even also where you begin the hike too? First, you have 2 choices on where to begin the hike. However, we suggest you park in the small parking lot on the right side of the road (link below).
Why? Because it is far more impressive and exciting to experience the waterfalls from the front versus coming up behind them. Second, the last two images below show the other entrance point. But again, our recommendation would be to end at that point and then walk the road back to your vehicle. Further, be aware that the parking lot is unmarked, but you will see a sign across from it saying “Vestdalsfossar.”
- Location: East Iceland (6 minute drive northeast of the town of Seyðisfjörður).
- Miles to Hike: 3 Mile Loop
- Hike Time: ~2.5-3.5 hours (with stops).
- Google Maps: Parking Lot Link
- GPS Coordinates: 65°17’02.2″N 13°58’29.6″W
- Terrain: Hilly, wood chip path, muddy, marshy, rocky, and wood planks.
::Special Note:: This area has not succumbed to ropes, barriers or the feeling of overwhelmed tourism. Please be a responsible tourist / visitor… Be Kind and Leave No Trace!
Vestdalsfossar Hiking Directions
Meanwhile, what will you see and experience when you hike Vestdalsfossar? Allow us to share with you step by step what it looks like as our team embarked in September…
Step 1: Waterfall Narnia
Once you leave the parking lot, you’ll follow the well marked path (at least with no snow on the ground it is). It will likely consist of wood chips / mulch. Within 5-8 minutes of hiking from the parking lot, you’ll come across one of the most stunning waterfalls in the entire hike. All three of us were overwhelmed by how alive and enchanted the area felt!
Step 2: 360 Degree Views
Believe it or not, hiking to the top of the first set of valley waterfalls within Vestdalsfossar reveals another pretty waterfall to marvel over! For example, this specific waterfalls name is Arnarfossar. Here you will also have a 360 degree view of the fjord too!
Step 3: Cool Cascades in Iceland
About 15-40 minutes further into the Vestdalsfossar hike you begin trudging through more “swamp” like terrain especially if it has rained recently. Furthermore, you’ll see 2 more smaller river waterfall cascades along the way. But this section is the least interesting because it is very flat. Iceland Hiking Tip: It’s good to have Sealskinz socks on or a change of shoes once you’re done with the hike.
Step 4: Option to Continue the Hike
Next, you’ll be about 40-60ish minutes into your Vestdalsfossar trek when you’ll reach the final waterfall. Interesting lava rocks surround it and there is a fantastic rock lookout point to check it out from. From a distance, you’ll see another waterfall and the hike could continue into a longer one where there is also a lake named Vestdalsvatn.
Also we were told by a local that there is also a cave up there where the bones of a 30 year old “Mountain Lady” were found in 2004. The remains and jewels found near here were dated back to the Viking era circa 940. However, because we had a quite full agenda that day, we decided to forgo that piece. So we dare you to continue our trek!
Step 5: Trekking Out
At this point, you’ll feel accomplished, invigorated, and proud of yourself! Bravo!! Now time to hike down and out finishing the Vestdalsfossar loop. Likely around a 10-20ish minute hike out. Once you’ve made your way to the main road again, you’ll need to hike the road back to your vehicle. Note: Be mindful of the traffic in the area and don’t hog the road.
Eloping in East Iceland
Woohoo!! Inspired to head to East Iceland and elope at Vestdalsfossar? Surely it is possible but it is best to involve a local Iceland Wedding Planner to contact the landowner and town to ensure you have in advance permission to do so. Iceland is not one of those countries where the locals take kindly to “it’s better to beg for forgiveness than ask for permission.” The Icelandic culture is old school, founded on respect, and passed down traditions.
In conclusion, if you love this spot for a hiking elopement, we would be thrilled to introduce you to other private Iceland wedding locations like it too! Feel free to contact us for more information on getting that adventure started! Bring on your amazing adventure elopement in Iceland!
Lastly, if exploring East Iceland, don’t forget to spend some time discovering Mjóifjörður too!
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