For years, Iceland was just another country, for many people, very far away and an unlikely place to visit. Myths about no one speaking English, remote location for a large number of people, unbearable cold weather, are some of the ideas people used to have that stopped them for considering Iceland as their next travel destination.

Well, things have changed. Iceland is attracting more and more people every day. And how can we blame them if this is the country for the dreamers and adventurers? Snæfellsnes’ location is in Western Iceland between Reykjavík and the Westfjords, and it is only a 2-hour drive from Reykjavík. The magic of every place here is unbelievable, and it also encloses other kinds of magical beliefs: the elves. Most of the people in West Iceland believe in elves as good supernatural creatures as long as humans respect them and their lands. Cool fact, right? So, here are the starred places in Snæfellsness you shouldn’t miss.

 

Stykkishólmur

The fishing town

We are starting our journey to the capital city of Snæfellsnes up north of the area to a town with a population of approximately 1.200 people and a small area of 10km squared. Fishing is the primary income source, followed by tourism. Even though it is a tiny place, you can visit for an hour, walk around the town, try some delicious seafood in local restaurants, go around in a boat tour or visit the local geothermal swimming pool.

This picturesque town is very colorful, and our favorite spot is in the harbor. You will be able to appreciate beautiful views of the islands around it.

Kirkjufell

The most photographed mountain in Iceland

A 40-minute drive is ahead of us taking road 54, and we will arrive at the magnificent Kirkjufell Mountain. Now, it is time to park the car and begin a hiking adventure. It is easy if you follow the walking trail, but if you want something more challenging, climb up to the top. And our advice is that you do it. If you are inexperienced with this, it is better if a guide accompanies you.

Kirkjufell Mountain, also known in the famous show Game of Thrones as the Arrow Head Mountain, and it is 463 meters high. One of the most exciting things about Kirkjufell is its shape. The two glaciers around it influenced the form it has today, and the layers you see are the result of the many volcanic eruptions. If you are interested, you can book a 2-hour kayaking tour around Kirkjufell. It is very entertaining, especially if you are a big group! We also recommend looking for the Waterfall Kirkjufellsfoss. The angle of the photo from here with Kikjufell on the background is just incredible.

Svöðufoss

Snæfellsnes’ waterfall

We suppose you took a significant number of pictures in our previous spot, so you should have a lot of time to choose your favorite while heading to Svöðufoss. The drive will take you 30 minutes continuing on the road 54 to route 574.

This powerful waterfall comes from the Laxá river and continues to the Atlantic Ocean. Although it does not compare to Skógafoss in the South Coast of Iceland, Svöðufoss has its charm. It has Snæfellsjökull on the background, and the basalt columns beside it make it even more beautiful.

Skarðsvík

The White Sand Beach

When we say a white sand beach, it is just like the beaches you see in the rest of Europe, but not quite the same. Skarðsvík is an exceptional location when compared to the landscape style we find in Iceland. The soft yellowish color of the sand contrasted with the black lava rocks makes this place an unusual one. You can also see the difference in the color of the ocean, which is brighter and more light blueish than the other beaches.

Coming from Svöðufoss, you will take road 579 or Útnesvegur, as it is called, for 12 minutes.

Djúpalónssandur

The black sand beach

Continuing on Útnesvegur road, you will arrive at Djúpalónssandur in approximately 20 minutes.

Already in Snæfellsjökull National Park on the west side, you will find Djúpalónssandur, a black sand beach as the common ones you see in Iceland, and before it used to be part of the fishing village and used as a spot for fishing boats. Today the bay is abandoned.

Vatnshellir Cave

The Lava Exploring

We’ve told you before that Snæfellssnes was Iceland in miniature, and look, now we are heading to an 8000-year-old lava tube! Vatnshellir Cave is only 7 minutes away from our previous stop.

To explore Vatnshellir, it is recommendable to do it with a tour guide. You will see unique lava formations, and access the lower part of the cave from a narrow staircase that takes you underground. The lava tube goes 35 meters below the surface, so you might need equipment for this adventure like flashlights, helmets and wear some warm clothes.

Lóndrangar

The coastline cliff

Drive south for 2 minutes, and you will arrive at Lóndrangar, a pair of basalt pinnacles in the southern coast of Snæfellsness. These volcanic lava rocks go from the sea to the coastline, creating a majestic view over the sea with the highest rock being 75 meters tall. It is a lovely place to see birds, especially some cute puffins.

Close to Lóndrangar, you will find the famous Malarritsviti lighthouse built in 1917, and with a beautiful view with the basalt cliffs on the background. Observe the land around it is untouched by humans. This is mainly because of the stories that farmers shouldn’t use this land due to that it belongs to the elves, and it is not recommended to touch the area.

Arnarstapi

The famous fishing village

Continue the journey with a 10-minute drive to Arnarstapi, the small fishing and old trading village of Snæafellsnes. If you have been doing this trip for the whole day, we recommend you to stop here for a bit and have something to eat. Walk along the coastline, and you will find some beautiful birds like the Kittiwake.

Gatklettur means “the rock with the hole in it,” and you will instantly see it when arriving at Arnarstapi. This is one of our favorite spots in Snæfellsnes with the stunning and dangerous cliffs. Even though it can seem risky, don’t you worry! Go on top of Gatklettur and take a walk over it to take one of the best pictures you will have of your trip to Iceland.

Rauðfeldsgjá

The saga story location

Only 7-minutes away, you will find a magical place: Rauðfeldsgjá. The direct translation means Red Mountain Rift, and it is one of the most interesting geological places to see in Iceland, especially for the story behind it. Around 12 centuries ago, a tragic event happened and gave the name to the actual ravine.

Rauðfeldur and Sölvi were two brothers sons of Þorkell, the half brother of Bárður Snæfellsás. One day, both of them were playing with one of Bárður’s daughters Helga, and accidentally pushed her down to the open ocean. She disappeared, and when her father found out about what happened, in a rage moment, he pushed Rauðfeldur from the top of Rauðfeldsgjá and then Sölvi off the cliff.

Even though Rauðfeldsgjá has a strong story, it still encloses natural magic. You can take a short walk and follow the path along a stream. The views of the sky in Rauðfeldsgjá are amazing. It is essential to know that if you are trying to climb, you will need waterproof clothing and all the necessary equipment.

Búðakirkja

The little black church

We continue our journey onto Útnesvegur for a 15-minute drive to get to Búðakirkja. This church is located in a tiny town called Búðir, more known as a hamlet for its small size. Sitting over the Búðahraun lava field, Búðakirkja is a little black church and built in 1703. In 1987 the church had to be reconstructed, it includes a graveyard and relics such as a bell and a vessel.

Búðakirkja may sound like a typical church, but its black color and the location makes it very special and unique. The church is trendy for weddings, especially if there are any other natural phenomena at the time like the Northern Lights.

Landbrotalaug Hot Spring

The tiny hot spring of Snæfellsnes

Now the last and longest drive begins heading to Landbrotalaug Hot Spring. Buckle up for a 52-minute ride while enjoying the beauty of Snæfellsnes coastline.

When arriving at Landbrotalaug Hot Spring, you might see other people inside of it, and you may have to wait. This natural hot spring is a discovery for most people, and its small size only allows two people at a time inside. Most people decide to remain inside their cars while they wait for their turn, and remember that there is no place to change your clothes, so be prepared! Landbrotalaug is a place to relax and enjoy with a great view of Iceland.

Snæfellsnes is a beautiful place, and it is worth it. Pack your things, and adventure yourself because you will never see something like this ever in your life. Enjoy and share your experience with us!