Iceland 2023 Day 6 – Skogafoss To Jokulsarlon

Date: 27th Feb 2023

Skogafoss And Foss A Sidu

Today we set off for the famous Jokulsarlon – the ice lagoon – one of the top attractions in Iceland. The drive to Jokulsarlon is just over 200km and along the route we decided to visit a couple of other glacier locations at Svinasfellsjokul and Fjallsarlon which is a smaller version of Jokulsarlon.

First however we re-visited Skogafoss a little earlier than on the previous morning for another attempt a a dark moody image of the waterfall.

Skogafoss Mono

Driving on from Skogafoss, we planned to stop at Foss a Sidu. Although this is usually a scenic slender fall, on our visit it was marred by a rather large bank of rather dirty snow, so instead, here is one of the waterfalls just a few hundred metres back up the road. The amazing thing about Iceland is that waterfalls that elsewhere would be celebrated hardly get a second glance, but this one is well worth a picture.

Waterfall Near Foss A Sidu


From Foss a Sidu, we drove onto the Skaftafell area. From here and all the way east along the south coast of Iceland, numerous glaciers flow down from the massive glacial icecap of Vatnajokul. These glacial tongues can be several kilometres across, and although mightily impressive, they only hint at the expanse of snow and ice hiding far above and behind the exit glacier. Svinafellsjokul is one such exit glacier, and is reached by a short walk from a car park just off Highway 1. The glacier has a small lagoon formed by melting ice, with numerous icebergs, both floating in the lagoon and washed up on the shore.


The glacier itself is about 1km across and 7km long. The following close-up view of the glacier gives a better feel for the flow of ice coming down from the mountains behind, with the high ice plateau hidden in the cloud above the glacier. This image is a panoramic telephoto shot, made up of several vertical images to cover the width of the glacier, giving more resolution than could be achieved with a single image.

Close-Up Of Svinafellsjokul

Iceland can be full of surprises, however one thing we did not expect to see was a Buddhist monk dressed in saffron robes climbing about amongst the ice bergs. He was posing for some friends, but was happy enough for me to also take a picture.

Bhuddist in the Bergs

Hof Turf Church

About 15lkm on from Svinafellsjokul is the small village of Hof, which is set back from the main Highway 1. The main attraction here is a small turf church. The church was built in 1884 and was the last to be built in the traditional turf roof style. Today there are only 6 such churches surviving in Iceland.

Hof Turf Church

Hof Church And Graveyard


Our last stop of the day was at Fjallsarlon, which is a glacial lagoon, about 10km from the better known and larger Jokulsarlon. Although Fjallsarlon is smaller, this has an advantage because the glacier across the lagoon is closer, giving better views of there are few icebergs in the lagoons to add interest. Fjallsarlon is now becoming quite popular in its own right and there is a large car park and cafe. From the car park the lagoon is hidden from sight behind the terminal moraines, but climbing to the top of the moraine gives a spectacular view across the lagoon to the glacier and mountains beyond.


Along the edge of the lagoon are numerous icebergs and icefloes which can be used to add foreground interest.