Waterfall by Holaskjol

Fjallabak Reserve / Holaskjol, South Region (Suðurland), Iceland

About Waterfall by Holaskjol

Hiking Distance: almost roadside; dropoff exposure
Suggested Time: 30 minutes

Date first visited: 2007-07-05
Date last visited: 2007-07-05

Waterfall Latitude: 63.90735
Waterfall Longitude: -18.61142

Waterfall Safety and Common Sense

The Waterfall by Holaskjol was something we stumbled upon accidentally while we were on our Landmannalaugur Tour from Kirkjubæjarklaustur. The driver made a stop at the guesthouses here at what turned out to be Hólaskjol (which I earlier thought at the time was Hólaskol), and that was when we noticed a big waterfall hidden in the adjacent gorge. Little did we realize at the time that this was actually a pretty popular place to spend a couple of nights to make it easier to tour the backcountry attractions like Eldgjá (along with Ófærufoss) and Landmannalaugur or even a longer trek out to Þórsmörk.

While we didn’t have time on the tour to get off the bus and check out the waterfall, we drove back here on our own the following day. It was not easy to get a good view since the falls was deep in the gorge and angled in a way that its base was mostly obscured from view. The photo you see at the top of the page was probably the best that I could do. Any further attempts to improve the viewing angle would’ve meant getting dangerously close to the unstable cliff edges. Plus, it started raining pretty hard during our visit which further added to the hazards that were present here.

Normally, I would give an excursion this short a difficulty of “1”. After all, it was merely a very short walk up the steps behind the guesthouses to get a view of the falls. However, I bumped up the score due to the presence of the dropoffs and the temptation of trying to improve the viewing angle, which made this a bit riskier.

Finally, I honestly don’t know if this waterfall had a real name or not. I hadn’t seen any literature about it (probably because I kept mispelling it “Holaskol”), and that’s why I’ve referred to this waterfall with the underwhelming name of “Waterfall by Hólaskjol.”


From Kirkjubæjarklaustur, we went 28km west on the Ring Road until we reached the signed junction for Route 208. From there, we drove about 30km connecting on the route 208, which eventually became the 4wd F208 in the Fjallabak Nature Reserve. That said, the road was fairly tame despite its roughness as we got closer to Holaskjol. This drive took us about an hour.

For geographical context, Kirkjubæjarklaustur was 248km east of Reykjavík.

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Tagged with: fjallabak, eldgja, south region, interior, highlands, sudurland, iceland, waterfall, 4wd, landmannalaugur, klaustur, kirkjubaejarklaustur, thorsmork

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