Haifoss and Gjain

Date 07 August 2016

Haifoss and Gjain

Haifoss and Gjain

We check that morning and confirm the weather forecast from the previous day. We give up on the project to explore Kjolur and decide to go to Kerlingarfjöll instead to focus on a few points of interest in the region that we missed.

We strike out for Road 32 and Haifoss. The waterfall is not very well signposted, but all you need to remember is to take Road 332 when you see signs for Holaskogur/Laxargljufur on your left and keep going for 15 minutes.


After a few kilometers down this dirt road we reach a car park with the first sign posts to Haifoss. The waterfall is a 5-10 minute walk from the car park. In fact, there are two waterfalls next to each other: Haifoss and Granni, both of which come from the Fossá River and plunge down 120 meters in dramatic fashion.

Haifoss is the more impressive of the two due to its size, being the 3rd highest waterfall in the country. We decide to take Road 26 on the advice of Jon Tor to see the Þjófafoss waterfall on the Þjórsá river. Þjófafoss is located at the foot of Mount Burfell and is an immensely powerful waterfall.

On the advice of Jon Tor, this afternoon we plan to eat in Bragginn not far from Fluðir in Sydra Langholt. The place is traditional in the extreme and looks nothing like a restaurant. It's more like eating in a warehouse with only 3 tables that serves only typical regional dishes made from local vegetables and flowers (literally), or a delicious smoked trout accompanied by homemade rye bread. This is a fantastic address where the food is as unique and special as the atmosphere.

The region seems to be the only part of Iceland untouched by rain today, and we take that as a sign to stay here this afternoon. We hit the road towards Stong and Gjain. After a quick stop at Stong Farm, we take the small path that leads to Gjain.

This unique site is a lush oasis of waterfalls, ponds, and volcanic rock formations, located only a few kilometers from Stong in the Thjórsárdalur valley. The view from the top of Gjain is truly magnificent, and you can take a small scenic hike that cuts right through this lush greenery and its roaring waterfalls, including the main attraction: Gjarfoss.

On the way back, we stop at yet another waterfall, the Hjálparfoss which is the meeting point of the Fossá and Þjórsá rivers. Surrounded by stunning basaltic organs, this is a unique waterfall as it combines two intersecting flows in dramatic fashion.

Around 07:00PM we decide to head back to our guesthouse. Tonight is our last evening at Jon and Bjarni's house and we want to enjoy the hot tub just a little more before we hand it back to the owner. Tomorrow we head due South for more adventures.