Insider Guide To Seljalandsfoss Waterfall, Iceland

Have you ever wanted to explore one of nature’s most majestic and awe-inspiring sites firsthand? Look no further than Seljalandsfoss in Iceland! This breathtaking waterfall is perhaps the country’s most photogenic, with its dramatic backdrop, thunderous roar, and instantly recognizable silhouette.

To help make your adventure even more memorable, here is my insider Seljalandsfoss waterfall travel guide filled with all the must-know information, including location details, tips on planning your visit, and fun facts about this iconic spot.

So pack your camera and prepare for unparalleled views when visiting Seljalandsfoss- you won’t regret it!

Travel guide to Seljalandsfoss waterfall in Iceland.

What is Seljalandsfoss?

Seljalandsfoss is a stunning waterfall located along the South Coast of Iceland. Its 60-meter drop over a cliff edge makes it one of the most iconic waterfalls in Iceland and draws thousands of tourists each year to witness its beauty. Its unique feature is that you can walk behind the curtain of falling water – making for an unforgettable experience.

Seljalandsfoss waterfall is one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Iceland.

Surrounding Seljalandsfoss are other smaller waterfalls and cascades, as well as lush vegetation, giving it an even more dramatic backdrop. Its accessibility from Reykjavik also makes it one of the most visited attractions in all of Iceland.

Seljalandsfoss hiking route in Iceland.

How was Seljalandsfoss formed?

Seljalandsfoss was formed by the melting water from glaciers thousands of years ago. As the glacier retreated, it left behind layers of rock that acted as barriers to the flow of water. Over time, this caused the water to carve out a path through these rocks, creating the majestic Seljalandsfoss.

Seljalandsfoss waterfall in Iceland.

Where is Seljalandsfoss waterfall?

Seljalandsfoss waterfall is located in South Iceland, about 128 km from the capital city of Reykjavík. It’s part of the Seljalands River that flows through the region and has become a popular tourist attraction thanks to its unique appearance.

Standing at 60 meters (197 ft) tall, it stands out amongst other Icelandic waterfalls with its ability to be completely encircled.

Seljalandsfoss waterfall in Iceland.

How to get to Seljalandsfoss waterfall from Reykjavik?

The easiest way to get to Seljalandsfoss waterfall from Reykjavik is by car. The journey will take approximately 1 hour and 50 minutes, depending on the route.

If you choose to drive, you should follow Route 1 South from Reykjavík until you reach exit 254 (Seljalandsfoss/Skógafoss). Follow the signs for “Seljalandsfoss” and turn right onto the Ring Road toward Selfoss. After 8 km, you will arrive at your destination.

Once you turn onto this road, follow it around until you reach a small parking lot with a path leading toward Seljalandsfoss. From here, it’s only a short walk down the pathway and up some stairs to the viewing platform for Seljalandsfoss!

You can also take a bus or taxi, but it will be more expensive than driving yourself. Alternatively, you can also book a South Coast Iceland tour from Reykjavik and travel easily. The tour will introduce you to the beautiful waterfalls and black sand beaches.

Seljalandsfoss waterfall in Iceland.

Weather in Seljalandsfoss

Seljalandsfoss weather is known for its mild, temperate climate and short cold spells.

The average temperature in the summer months ranges from 10 °C (50 °F) to 16 °C (60.8 °F), with occasional warmer days reaching up to 21-22 °C (69.8-71.6°F).

During the Seljalandsfoss winter months, temperatures can drop to -2 °C (28.4°F), while slightly higher temperatures are usually experienced closer to springtime.

Seljalandsfoss waterfall in Iceland.

Rainfall is typical throughout the year, but especially in the autumn and winter months, with an average precipitation of 90 mm per month during those seasons.

Snowfall is not uncommon either, particularly in January and February when temperatures reach their lowest. Regardless of the time of year, you should always be prepared for unexpected changes in temperature and weather. 

Seljalandsfoss waterfall in Iceland.

When is the best time to visit Seljalandsfoss waterfall?

The best time to visit Seljalandsfoss waterfall is from June to August when temperatures are most temperate and rainfall is minimal. During these months, you can expect to experience sunny days with warm temperatures that make for a pleasant trip.

Keep in mind that days tend to be long during these summer months due to Iceland’s location near the Arctic circle; therefore, it may be wise to pack warm clothing for evening hours.

Seljalandsfoss waterfall in Iceland.

Additionally, visiting Seljalandsfoss in the summer will give you plenty of opportunities for activities such as taking a scenic Seljalandsfoss waterfall hike, exploring nearby attractions, or even catching a glimpse of some of the wildlife that make South Iceland home. 

How much time to spend at Seljalandsfoss waterfall?

Visiting Seljalandsfoss waterfall is an unforgettable experience, and it’s important to make the most of your time there. I recommend spending 2-3 hours at Seljalandsfoss, but this can vary depending on what activities you plan to do.

If you’d like to hike around the falls or take a guided tour, 3-4 hours may be more appropriate. However, if you only want to enjoy the views from the observation deck and take some pictures, 1-2 hours should be sufficient.

Seljalandsfoss waterfall in Iceland.

Best things to do in Seljalandsfoss

One of the best ways to see Seljalandsfoss is by walking behind the waterfall. Hiking around Seljalandsfoss is a rewarding experience. Numerous trails lead up and around the falls, offering stunning views of the surrounding landscape and the falls themselves.

Seljalandsfoss hiking route in Iceland.

You can also try a kayak or boat tour. These tours provide breathtaking views of the falls from a unique perspective you wouldn’t get from land-based exploration. You can also explore caves near the base of the falls, which are accessible at low tides.

Climbing Seljalandsfoss is also an option for more adventurous visitors. It’s important to note that you should only try it if you’re experienced and have appropriate safety gear. 

Seljalandsfoss waterfall in Iceland.

What to wear when visiting Seljalandsfoss waterfall?

The most important thing to consider is waterproofing. Layering your clothing can provide warmth and protection from wind and rain. Make sure you wear a waterproof jacket or coat to protect yourself from getting wet when walking behind the waterfall.

A pair of lightweight hiking pants, boots with good grip, and woolen socks will also ensure maximum comfort in slippery conditions. Taking a hat, gloves, and scarf with you can provide additional warmth when temperatures drop during the evening or night. Bring appropriate accessories such as sunglasses and sunscreen if necessary. 

Seljalandsfoss hiking route in Iceland.

What to pack for Seljalandsfoss waterfall

When packing for a trip to Seljalandsfoss waterfall, bring the following items: waterproof clothing such as a raincoat; comfortable, closed-toe shoes such as hiking boots or sneakers; and warm layers like a hat and gloves.

Additionally, I recommend bringing snacks, water, and sun protection like sunglasses and sunscreen. Depending on the season, consider bringing insect repellent. 

To make the most of your time at the waterfall, don’t forget your camera or binoculars so you can take photos or observe wildlife in the area! Finally, if you plan on going further up into the mountains around the waterfall, be sure to bring along any extra supplies necessary for camping or hiking. 


Camping near Seljalandsfoss waterfall

The nearest campsite is Seljalandsfoss Campsite, just a few minutes from the falls. This campsite has plenty of amenities such as electricity, showers, and laundry facilities. It also offers beautiful views of Seljalandsfoss and its surrounding nature.

With its proximity to this breathtaking natural wonder, camping at Seljalandsfoss provides a unique opportunity to experience all that Iceland has to offer. You can enjoy many activities, such as hiking, fishing, sightseeing, and more.

Also, there are several tourist attractions nearby that make for a great day tour, including the legendary Reynisfjara black sand beach, Dyrholaey rock formations and puffin colonies, and Skogafoss waterfall. 

Seljalandsfoss hiking route in Iceland.

Attractions near Seljalandsfoss waterfall

Seljalandsfoss waterfall is just one of many breathtaking attractions in the south region of Iceland. Other popular attractions nearby include: 

Gljufrabui waterfall

Gljufrabui waterfall is located just a few minutes from the Seljalandsfoss waterfall. It’s an impressive sight and often referred to as the hidden gem of south Iceland.

Gljufrabui’s unique feature is that it’s nestled within a canyon, with only one narrow slit allowing access. This makes for a truly awe-inspiring experience that will stay in your memories for years to come.

The waterfall plunges into a deep ravine, and its thunderous roar echoes through the canyon walls, creating an unforgettable natural spectacle. You can enjoy taking photos of this beautiful scenery or explore further by climbing up to the higher ridge, which offers spectacular views over the entire area.


Skogafoss is another majestic waterfall south of Iceland, only a short drive from Seljalandsfoss. It boasts an impressive 60-meter drop and is one of the most visited waterfalls in Iceland.

The area surrounding Skogafoss is full of scenic trails and stunning views, making it an ideal spot for hikers and nature enthusiasts alike.

Nearby attractions include the Skógar Folk Museum, which showcases the cultural heritage of southern Iceland, as well as countless other natural wonders such as Eyvindarálón lake. You should also check out Sólheimajökull glacier, just a 15-minute drive away.

Travel guide to Skogafoss waterfall in Iceland.


Reynisfjara is an impressive black sand beach located near Seljalandsfoss waterfall. This unique beach features stunning basalt columns created by the cooling lava from a volcanic eruption centuries ago.

reynisdrangar black sand beach iceland.

These columns form an imposing cliff that stands witness to the wild Atlantic Ocean in front of it. It is a breathtaking sight and makes for some great photography opportunities.

Along with its natural formations, Reynisfjara has several exciting activities available to you, such as bird watching, horseback riding, and deep-sea fishing. There are also plenty of restaurants and cafes nearby if you need a break from exploring this spectacular landscape.

reynisdrangar black beach iceland..

Black Sand Beach 

Seljalandsfoss waterfall is situated near Black Sand Beach, an unmissable attraction in South Iceland just 15 minutes away. This volcanic beach stretches for 15 kilometers and is fringed with rugged cliffs and caves that add to its mysterious beauty.

Its dark sands contrast against the bright blue waters of the North Atlantic Ocean, creating a breathtaking vista. The ocean conditions make this a great spot for surfing, though swimming can be dangerous due to strong currents and undertows.

There are also plenty of trails to explore around the beach, offering an opportunity to view wildlife such as seals, whales, dolphins, and birds in their natural habitat.

Food & drink

When visiting Seljalandsfoss, I suggest bringing plenty of snacks like trail mix, dried fruit, or energy bars.

If you’re planning on camping overnight near the waterfall, it can be helpful to bring quick-cooking items like instant noodles or pre-made rice packets that don’t require much preparation.

For drinks, make sure you pack plenty of water as well as other beverages like tea or coffee for when temperatures dip during the evening hours. 

Other tips for visiting Seljalandsfoss waterfall

Seljalandsfoss waterfall can be an incredibly memorable experience if you are aware of safety tips while visiting. It’s important to wear appropriate clothing and footwear, such as waterproof jackets and hiking boots.

The footpaths near the waterfall can be slippery, so take extra care when walking around. I recommend bringing a flashlight or headlamp in case of darkness since parts of the routes might lack light sources.

Additionally, there is no food or water available at Seljalandsfoss, so it’s best to bring your refreshments for the journey. Lastly, make sure you check the weather before setting out, as this will inform any preparations you may need to make for your trip.

Seljalandsfoss waterfall is one of the best things to do in Iceland.

Frequently asked questions about Seljalandsfoss waterfall

Why is Seljalandsfoss waterfall famous?

From the base of this beautiful waterfall, you can walk behind it and experience its spectacular views from behind the water curtain. This adds to the uniqueness of Seljalandsfoss, as many other waterfalls do not provide such an incredible experience for those who visit them.
Additionally, because Seljalandsfoss is surrounded by lush greenery and open fields, it provides a stunning backdrop for photographers looking to capture magnificent shots during their time in Iceland. 

How long does it take to walk to Seljalandsfoss waterfall?

The average time to walk to Seljalandsfoss waterfall is approximately 20 minutes. Depending on the speed of your walk, this amount of time can fluctuate. The total distance from the car park to the waterfall is 1.2 km (0.75 miles).

Is Seljalandsfoss waterfall free?

Seljalandsfoss waterfall is open to the public; therefore, there is no cost associated with visiting it. Additionally, you don’t need to pay a fee to access the grounds surrounding the waterfall. While parking may be charged in certain areas near the waterfall, most tourists can find free Seljalandsfoss parking nearby.

Can you walk behind Seljalandsfoss waterfall?

Yes, it’s possible to walk behind Seljalandsfoss waterfall because the path leading up to the back of Seljalandsfoss is wide enough for multiple people and offers an incredible view from behind the curtain of water.
Although walking around or behind the Seljalandsfoss falls can be slippery, it’s a worthwhile experience you should not miss. Be sure to dress appropriately in waterproof clothing and wear sturdy footwear while exploring this natural marvel. 

Final thought

Seljalandsfoss is a remarkable waterfall not to be missed on your trip to Iceland. It’s easy to get to Seljalandsfoss, making it the perfect place to relax and enjoy the country’s natural beauty. With this insider travel guide, you’ll know everything you need to enjoy Seljalandsfoss waterfall to the fullest.

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