One of the most magical days of our Iceland vacation was this one.
As we traveled the West, Westfjords, North, and East we saw many sights – but it was intoxicating to think about how the landscape would change even more as we began to travel South. Being able to see glaciers in person is unreal, and crazy to think we could drive right up to some of them.
VESTRAHORN AND THE VIKING MOVIE SET HORSES
One of the most beautiful locations in Iceland was Vestrahorn, a place we have been excited to photograph for a long time. We have even had a photo of it on our computer desktop to remind us of our excitement.
We did not realize there would be a cost for admission (400 ISK per person, or roughly 4$ USD), but it granted us access to the Vestrahorn mountain, as well as the Skaftafell peninsula, which surprisingly to us had an old Viking movie set that we could wander about. Our initial impression was basically, “Well, that’s cool!” because we do enjoy a good movie, but we were in for a real treat…
WHEN THE ICELANDIC HORSES WALKED INTO THE MOVIE SET!
We were just casually taking some photos of the film set, minding our business, when suddenly a bunch of Icelandic horses began to walk right in the entrance. They were very friendly, and basically just chilled with us. We took many photographs (as is to be expected), offered dandelion sacrifices, and just really liked being around them. We have so many wonderful photos, we put together an entire post dedicated to Icelandic horses we encountered around the island.
Of the many experiences in Iceland, we’d like to go back and revisit this one again and again.
You cannot help but be filled with joy looking at these pictures.
Now, get ready, this section of pictures is going to be a long one!
and now…vetrahorn landscape photography
One of our favorite landscape photography locations in Iceland!
JOKULSARLON ICE BEACH AND FJALLSARLON GLACIAL LAGOON
There is nothing quite like seeing glaciers in person. Many people who visit Iceland and explore outside of the capitol and Golden Circle will probably find themselves at Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon. It is a truly unique experience, and while heavily populated with tourists, well worth a visit. As photographers, capturing the rich blue colors of the ice chunks with the glacier in the background is hard to beat. Right across the road is Diamond Beach, a black sand beach with glacier ice chunks that is pretty captivating as well.
Down the road as we continued towards our next camping destination in Vik (found in Southern Iceland), we ran into a place called Fjallsarlon Glacier Lagoon. It was here that we were able to get up close and personal with the sheer scale of a glacier, and even got to experience the terrifying sound of part of it breaking off into the water below.
Some of our favorite photos came from this place, in particular when we saw a couple in some yellow rain jackets enjoying the sites, and we happened to snap a few photos of them with the glacier in the background showing the scale of the place.
SVARTIFOSS – BASALT COLUMN WATERFALL AND LONG EXPOSURES
Not far from that glacier hidden in Vatnajokull National Park is the famous waterfall – Svartifoss. We actually found a campground close by, and decided to stay the night here, making hiking into the evening much easier. The actual trail to Svartifoss is mostly uphill, making for a nice challenge, but when we arrived we had the place to ourselves. With some time and freedom, we set up our camera on a tripod, and experiment with long exposures that allowed us to capture the movement of the waterfall.
On the hike back down to our campervan, we were treated to a great Icelandic sunset. It made for some good light for a few quick portraits, too.
We ended the evening with some warm food, then some sleep – in preparation for our next day’s trip down to Vik.
Be sure to check out the rest of our Traveling Iceland article series.