Sigöldugljúfur canyon is one of Iceland’s best off-the-beaten path locations. This beautiful canyon, with its wall of waterfalls, is often overlooked or unknown to many visitors to Iceland.
The first time I saw images of Sigöldugljúfur online, I thought they were fake. How could this beautiful canyon with its wall of waterfalls be real?
Well, I can assure you, it is real. And what makes it even more special is its location. To get here, you will drive through kilometers of barren, rocky terrain and feel like you are in the middle of nowhere. You’ll park your car in a gravelly parking lot and then walk one more kilometer on a gray, dusty road.
And then you approach the edge of the canyon. Stretched out in front of you is an oasis in central Iceland. Along the right wall of the canyon it is lush and green, where the waterfalls spill out from the canyon walls. It’s an amazing sight to see.
To get here, you will need a 4×4, since it is located on an F-road, but it’s worth the journey. And if you are already planning a visit to Landmannalaugar, this is very easy to add into your itinerary.
Here’s how to do it.
Where is Sigöldugljúfur?
Sigöldugljúfur is located near the Golden Circle and Landmannalaugar. Here is its location in Iceland.
Sigöldugljúfur is the name of the canyon. The waterfalls are named the Lekafossar waterfalls.
Here are driving distances and times for nearby locations:
Landmannalaugar: 24 km, 45 minutes
Reykjavik: 170 km, 2.5 hours
Selfoss: 115 km, 1.75 hours
Fludir: 93 km, 1.5 hours
How to Get to Sigöldugljúfur
Since it is located on a F-road, you must have a 4×4 to get here.
If you do not have a 4×4, it is possible to visit Sigöldugljúfur on a tour (we do not have any specific tours to recommend). I am not aware of any way that you can get here by public transportation.
F208 is one of the main roads to take to Landmannalaugar. Sigöldugljúfur is located on this road, not far past the point where the gravel section of F208 begins.
As you take F208 south, you will pass a power plant. This is the point where it changes from paved road to a gravel road. And this stretch of F208 is very rocky and rough. As you get closer to Landmannalaugar (past Sigöldugljúfur), the road actually improves, at least in our experience in 2019.
F208 near Sigöldugljúfur
Once you pass the power station, drive approximately 3 km. At the bottom of the hill will be the parking lot to your right. There is enough room here for about 10 to 15 cars. Here are the GPS coordinates of the parking lot: 64°9’20.754″ N 19°8’18.257″ W.
From the parking lot, cross F208 to the access road. Visitors are not permitted to drive down this road (there is a sign here stating that this road is for staff only). Walk on this road to get to the viewpoint over Sigöldugljúfur canyon.
A view of F208 from the parking lot. Cross F208 towards the yellow sign. Then, follow the road to the viewpoint of Sigöldugljúfur.
It is a 1 km (0.6 mile) easy walk on this road to the viewpoint.
Once here, enjoy the view. You can also walk along the rim of the canyon for more views.
How Long Should You Spend Here?
If you just want to walk out to the rim and photograph the waterfalls, one hour is all you need.
Allow more time to walk along the rim for different views of the canyon.
With even more time, you can also visit Sigoldufoss, which is located several kilometers away near the power plant. Enter “Sigoldufoss” into Google Maps for its exact location.
We spent almost an hour and a half here, photographing the waterfalls. Tyler also took some awesome drone clips which you can see near the end of this article.
Going to Landmannalaugar?
If you already have plans to visit Landmannalaugar, this is very easy to add on to your day. You will literally drive right past Sigöldugljúfur, so you can visit the canyon on the way to Landmannalaugar or during the drive back from Landmannalaugar.
What We Did
We were staying in Flúðir near the Golden Circle. In the morning, we drove out to Landmannalaugar and spent the day here doing day hikes. This is an incredible area and if you have the time in your itinerary, it’s worth spending at least one day here.
On the drive back to Flúðir we stopped at Sigöldugljúfur. It surpassed all of our expectations. This is one of those places that looks so much better in person than in photos. There’s just something about seeing all of these waterfalls flowing at the same time. What a unique landscape!
Want to see more? Check out Tyler’s drone video of Sigöldugljúfur.
Before you go, check road conditions on road.is.
If you want updated weather reports, here is the link to en.verdur.is, the most reliable source for weather reports.
Frequently Asked Questions about Sigöldugljúfur
Is Sigöldugljúfur worth it?
Absolutely! This is one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Iceland. And since it is so remote, most likely you will be sharing the view with just a few other people. Sigöldugljúfur makes a great addition to Landmannalaugar and Háifoss, a waterfall that is located nearby.
How much time do I need to visit Sigöldugljúfur?
It takes about one hour to visit Sigöldugljúfur. From the parking area, it is a 15 to 20 minute walk to the viewpoint of the waterfalls. If you spend 20 to 30 minutes enjoying the view, and another 20 minute walk to get back to your car, that adds up to one hour. This is in addition to the driving time to get here.
Do I need a 4×4 to get to Sigöldugljúfur?
Yes, you must have a 4×4 to get to Sigöldugljúfur. Sigöldugljúfur is located on an F-road, and in Iceland, you are required to have a 4×4 to drive on the F-roads.
If you plan to visit Sigöldugljúfur on your visit to Iceland, I hope you have a great experience! And if you have any questions, or if you want to share your experience, please comment below.
More Information for Your Trip to Iceland
ADVENTURES IN ICELAND: One of the best ways to experience Iceland is on a hiking trail, and we have an article about 10 epic day hikes in Iceland. You can also venture to Kerlingarfjöll, go glacier hiking, visit Landmannalaugar, and hike the amazing Fimmvörðuháls trail.
LANDMANNALAUGAR: Landmannalaugar is one of the best places to visit in Iceland. Learn how to plan your visit in our Guide to Landmannalaugar. We also have detailed guides on how to hike Mt. Blahnúkúr, Mt. Brennisteinsalda, and how to combine these two hikes into one epic day hike.
ICELAND ITINERARIES: There are several ways to put together a trip to Iceland. If you have 10 days, here are four different ways to spend your time in Iceland. We also have a detailed 10 day itinerary that includes the highlights of Iceland, perfect if it is your first visit. Or, if you are looking for more adventure, check out our 10 day Iceland Adventure Itinerary.
RING ROAD ITINERARY: With 7 to 10 days, you can drive the entire Ring Road and experience the highlights of Iceland. Learn how to do it in our Ring Road Itinerary.
WATERFALLS IN ICELAND: Here are 20 beautiful waterfalls to visit in Iceland. We have detailed guides on how to visit Haifoss, Aldeyjarfoss, Dettifoss, and Brúarfoss. You can also hike to Glymur Waterfall, one of the tallest waterfalls in Iceland.
TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHY: For more information about the camera gear we carry, check out our Travel Photography Gear Guide. And tips and tricks for taking great photos in our article How to Take Better Photos while Traveling.
Read all of our articles about Iceland in our Iceland Travel Guide.
All rights reserved © Earth Trekkers. Republishing this article and/or any of its contents (text, photography, etc.), in whole or in part, is strictly prohibited.