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  • Einar Páll Svavarsson

Flögufoss waterfall in the East Region

Updated: Mar 21, 2022


Flögufoss flows through a small stone arch from the terrace all the way down to the bottom of the cliff
Flögufoss flows through a small stone arch from the terrace all the way down to the bottom of the cliff

Flögufoss is an impressive waterfall in the valley Breiðdalur in eastern Iceland. The valley is part of a vast caldera formed around nine million years ago. Like many old calderas, it hasn't erupted for a long time but has collapsed and is sunk in layers of lava under an ice cap, which has formed a base for sediments and lakes. Although the waterfall doesn't have a large volume of water, especially in late summer, its beauty comes from its height of 60 meters. Located in the beautiful surroundings of the magnificent valley Breiðdalur, the waterfall speaks volumes with its incredible geology. On the terrace near the top of the waterfall, another small waterfall falls. The waterfall flows through a small stone arch from the terrace all the way down to the bottom of the cliff. Interestingly, although the entire setup is hundreds of thousands of years old, the waterfall changed its path and started flowing through the stone arch only two decades ago. The old path of the waterfall can be seen at the top by the arch's side. This natural makeover gives the waterfall a much more striking look.


East Region on map of Iceland
East Region on map of Iceland

Flögufoss is a waterfall with stunning surroundings

The drive to Flögufoss parking lot is only a short distance from the main road 1
The drive to Flögufoss parking lot is only a short distance from the main road 1

Behind the top of the waterfall, there is a magnificent mountaintop called Smátindsfjall, or Small peak mountain. The edges are called Smátindar. These are a group of steep and high lava peaks, made of basalt over thousands of years ago, sitting on a chunk of old rhyolite lava ash piled up in an eruption under the ice. The peaks can also be seen from the next fjord Berufjörður, which is located south of Breiðdalsvík and Breiðdalur. On the other hand, they are called Smátindur or Small peak. Flögufoss is an excellent place for photography and, similar to many exciting places in the East Region, undiscovered.


Flögufoss is easily accessible.

Behind the top of the waterfall, there is a magnificent mountaintop called Smátindsfjall
Behind the top of the waterfall, there is a magnificent mountaintop called Smátindsfjall

The drive to Flögufoss parking lot is only a short distance from the main road 1 on the Icelandic Ring Road in Breiðdalur. It is a 15-minute light hike to the waterfall from the parking lot. It is an excellent addition to a visit to the beautiful Beljandi. A waterfall that is almost a full contrast to Flögufoss, low and wide. When driving from Breiðdalsvík, you need to take a left turn on road 966; it is a right turn coming from Egisstaðir. Essure that you don’t miss it. The best way to get a good view is to walk up the slope on the left side until you see the whole waterfall, the stone arch, and the mountain peak in the background. But for photographers, it is a great challenge to capture all angles in one frame. Note that this waterfall has not been photographed very often. It is a natural wonder made for drone photography, as the main background is high above the waterfall. It has a difficult point of view that a drone can easily fix.



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