Exploring Fagrifoss Waterfall

Everybody loves getting off the beaten path when on vacation, right?  Exploring places that just the locals go and likely less touristy too.  And in Iceland that could mean renting a 4×4 that is equipped for Icelandic Highland roads.  Today we are thrilled to share with you a place that is well worth the investment and time to check out…  Allow us to introduce you to Fagrifoss!  The direct translation to English means “beautiful waterfall” so join us as we share all of the need to know details.

Driving in the Icelandic Highlands

Special care, attention, education, and respect is needed when driving through the interior of Iceland.  Which is an area we fondly refer to as the highlands.  Why?  Because different routes require different vehicle types.  For example, there are huge differences between a 4-wheel drive vehicle, versus 4×4, and a modified 4×4, versus a super jeep.

But it’s not just about having the right vehicle to reverse through the dynamic landscapes it’s also about educating yourself on when and the weather in Iceland.  To illustrate, there are certain times of the year it is best to travel specific routes and that can change if rivers surge.  In fact, did you know many highland rivers have glacier quick sand in them?

Regardless of where you plan to adventure, make sure you do your research on the areas you want to explore before you embark.  Also, take a sec and check out this Guide to Discovering the Icelandic Highlands.  Below we will share what type of vehicle and the best time of year to visit Fagrifoss Waterfall.

How to Find Fagrifoss

Finding your way to Fagrifoss is an adventure in itself!  As the scenery and river crossings on the way are memorable!  Firstly, South Iceland needs to be on your agenda.  Secondly, ideally you’re driving a 4×4 on at least 32-35” tires.  Also, if possible with a snorkel would be even better as we’ve seen the river crossings be expansive so better to be safe than sorry!  After all, insurance does not cover you if you get water into the engine or damage the under body in any way on F-Roads.

Thirdly, you can pair it with a stop at Fjaðrárgljúfur (Feather Canyon) and / or Laki Crater. But again, please venture with the right vehicle so you don’t get into trouble.  Fourth, it’s best to explore this area June – September.  However there is a possibility of going later in the season depending on weather and road conditions before heading out.  Also keep in mind F-Roads are not maintained throughout the year.  Typically when they formally close between end of March to mid June and sometimes do not reopen until beginning of July.  And that is the time they are “fixed” one time for the year, then the roads just get progressively worse requiring more hardcore vehicles.

Here is the rundown and Google Map links from different areas of South Iceland to Fagrifoss:

  • Reykjavik to Fagrifoss, ~ 4-4.5 hour drive.  Google Map
  • Vik to Fagrifoss, ~ 1.5-2 hour drive. Google Map
  • From Fjaðrárgljúfur, 40-60 minutes.  Google Map
  • From Kirkjubæjarklaustur 50-75 minutes.  Google Map
  • Hofn to Fagrifoss, 3 hours 15 minutes to 4 hours.  Google Map

Fagrifoss Driving Directions

From Route 1 Fagrifoss is approximately  a 40-60 minute detour one way plus however long you wish to spend there.  Well worth the stop to experience this offbeat highland waterfall.  Next, if you’re coming from the West heading East you’ll turn LEFT onto Route #206 which is also referred to as Holtsvegur.  Follow the road back about 2.3km.  Additionally, follow the below photos for more step by step directions to guide you to Fagrifoss…

Fagrifoss Specs

Fagrifoss is set amidst rocky cliffs and surrounded by picturesque scenery.  Honestly, the ebb and flow of water plus the landscape  feels like you’re experiencing live art!!

  • Distance: ~1 km / .6 miles round trip
  • Hike Times: 5-15 minutes depending on pace / situation.
  • Terrain: Large rocks, dirt, mud, stone, loose rocks, and grass in parts.
  • Difficulty: Easy.
  • Elevation Gain: None
  • Waterfall Height: ~260 feet
  • Fagrifoss Hike Parking Lot: Google Map
  • Best Time to Hike: Mid-June to September
  • What to Pack: Checkout our IWP Amazon Shop for a guide on what to buy and / or bring!
  • Special Note:  Please respect the area and LEAVE NO TRACE and RESPECT ropes, signs, and barriers.

Step by Step Directions to Fagrifoss Waterfall

Alright, high five for making it to Fagrifoss parking lot now it’s time for the hike!  Here are the step by step highland waterfall hiking details… Enjoy!

Planning Highland Weddings

Getting married in the Icelandic highlands is one of the most exciting decisions you can make!  It’s here you’ll experience incredible landscapes that will blow your mind and leave you always wanting to explore more.  Our Iceland Wedding Planner team has been specializing in Icelandic highland wedding adventures for well over 10 years.  We’d even dare to say we know them like the back of our hand, so we bring unlimited expertise to you if interested in planning an Iceland wedding.  Feel free to contact us for more information on what that could look like for you!


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