Natural Wonders
23 August 2021

Kvernufoss waterfall - A hidden gem next to Skógafoss!

Kvernufoss waterfall is truly a hidden gem in Iceland. We know that term ‘hidden gem’ is probably way overused in most blogs about the natural wonders in Iceland. But we feel strongly about this one!

Kvernufoss waterfall
Bromr, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Where is the Kvernufoss waterfall?

If you’re going to see the glorious Skógafoss, like most people who drive the south coast do, you might be surprised to know that Kvernufoss is in the same area. It’s hidden out of sight inside a canyon but it’s only a short hike from the parking lot next to the Skógar museum.

Why you should visit Kvernufoss

You’re probably asking yourself: What’s so special about Kvernufoss? Well, let us tell you that first of all, you can easily walk behind it! Sure, there are other waterfalls you can walk behind in Iceland, like Seljalandsfoss for instance. But you won’t get as wet at Kvernufoss and there are a LOT fewer people there. 

Second of all, the surroundings are very beautiful. You´ll walk inside a canyon with steep cliffs, lots of birds (in the summer, at least) and can walk down to a cave-ish area where the river runs through. It’s a surreal experience.

The hike up to Kvernufoss

From the parking lot next to Skógar museum you can see a walking path leading into the canyon. You need to climb over a fence (it has stairs) and you´ll find it very easy to follow the path. It’s not a long hike and you don’t need to be equipped like you’re going to mount Everest by no means. But, we recommend hiking boots and a rain jacket because you´ll walk through the mist from the waterfall, and if it’s windy you might get more than a little mist!  

To give you some idea about the difficulty of the hike, the last time we were there (testing our Land Rover Discovery Sport, what a dream!) we walked past a tourist wearing plastic Adidas slippers and he seemed pretty happy. We wouldn’t recommend it though because the path next to the waterfall is muddy and a little slippery.

Adidas slippers