Seljalandsfoss waterfall in South Iceland - everything you need to know

The extremely beautiful Seljalandsfoss waterfall tumbles into a flat area of meadowland and lies on the River Seljalandsá which emanates from the Eyjafjallajökull glacier. It is located in southern Iceland, a 1¾ drive from Reykjavik  and can be seen from the Route 1 ring road. From Route 1, just follow Road 249 (which leads to Þórsmörk) for a short distance and you will find a car park nearby.

Seljalandsfoss is less powerful than other waterfalls such as Gullfoss and Dettifoss and relatively narrow, yet falls a substantial distance of 60 metres, cascading over a cliff that was once part of Iceland’s southern coastline.

A wide cavern undercuts the cliff and what is unique about the waterfall is that you can walk beneath it, with Summer visitors able to follow a path that encircles this magificent cascade. Waterproofs are recommended as there’s quite a lot of mist and spray. The path is also quite wet and can be slippery in places so care needs to be taken along the route. It is closed in the winter months due to falling ice and was also closed for a period in 2017 when rocks falling down from above presented a significant risk.

Seljalandsfoss waterfall is one of the most famous falls in all of Iceland and featured in Justin Bieber’s I’ll Show You music video, along with a number of other landmarks such as the plane wreck and Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon, as well as in episode one of the third season of Star Trek: Discovery and in the sixth season of US reality TV series, The Amazing Race.


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The waterfall can be seen from all angles but one of the best views is from behind it, particularly if you’re able to capture the setting sun at the same time.

There are few commercial establishments in the vicinity which further adds to the charm and appeal of the waterfall. Visitors travelling a short distance north of Seljalandsfoss can also see the lesser-known Gljúfrabúi waterfall down a narrow canyon, although access to it is a little less easy and requires you to wade through the gorge in front of it. Once again, be careful of slippery rocks.

Planning a trip to Iceland yourself? You can watch a video from our trip to Iceland here. Footage from Seljalandsfoss can be seen between 5m 48s and 5m 55s:

Disclosure: Our trip to Iceland was sponsored by Helly Hansen.

Comments (2)

  1. Sarah Wise says:

    How awesome that you can walk behind the waterfall!

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