One of the tough parts about doing the entire Ring Road is 10 days is the amount of driving required. It is a beautiful country to see and take in by car, but between the hiking and driving, it can be draining. The drive from Akureyri to Hofn takes 6+ hours.
After visiting some of the sites in northern Iceland over the past few days, our next journey takes us to one of the most intense waterfalls on the island.
DETTIFOSS – WATERFALL FROM PROMETHEUS
Along the way to Hofn, we stopped off to visit the waterfall Dettifoss – most recently recognized from being used in the Alien prequel movie Prometheus.
This was a captivating and very powerful waterfall, that has some similar qualities to Niagara Falls in Canada (without the tourist boardwalk). The power of this waterfall is stunning, and it is well worth a visit off the beaten path of the Ring Road to discover for yourself if you ever journey to Northern Iceland.
It should be noted, there are two access points for viewing Dettifoss. The side we viewed it on was much easier to access, and generally safer from what we have read online. The infamous viewpoint showcased in Prometheus is from the otherside, and while cool, made for a lot of tourists going unsafely out to the spot. We’re not exactly prudes when it comes to our adventures, but use common sense when visiting a place like this. With high winds, cold, and rock surfaces covered in water – one can only imagine how close you can be to slipping and falling into the falls. While it might provide some entertainment for the sadists among those visiting, most other people (ourselves included), just end up anxious for your safety 🙂
As a landscape photographer, Dettifoss is beautiful. The side we viewed from is impacted by the wall of spray that shoots up the side of the cliff – which is why the opposite side tends to be preferred by photographers. With that said, this spray is quite captivating to see, especially in person as it appears to reverse gravity.
THE LONG ROAD TO HOFN AND A BEAUTIFUL SUNSET
We continued our drive towards Hofn, with occasional stop offs along the way to take in the grandeur of the East Fjords. The sunset was notable as we were on the road well into the early portion of the evening. The sky appeared to be exceptionally painterly with stunning colors on display with the silhouetted mountain landscapes and the sea.
The landscapes on this stretch of the Ring Road were particularly impressive, reminding us heavily of the western US in states like Arizona. And, candid moments seemed to pop up time and time again. For photography, a favorite of ours was finding the perfect golden light at some random stop off where there was an overturned boat – beautifully lit and captured by our cameras.
We ended up spending the night at Hofn Campsite, to get some rest for the day to come!
Be sure to check out the rest of our Traveling Iceland article series.