Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon in Iceland :: Fshoq! Travel Blog

Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon in Iceland

Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon, Iceland

A huge glacier called Vatnajökull is located in the south of Iceland, a little over 300 kilometers from Reykjavik. This glacier, melting, created lakes and lagoons. One of them is the Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon, which, due to the proximity of the glacier, creates a freezing climate like in Antarctica.

To top it all, let's add the icebergs floating in the whole lagoon and the white cap of the Vatnajökull glacier itself, and we have a beautiful picture of the frosty lake Fjallsárlón. A beautiful, though harsh place for travelers and photographers. And although getting here is not the easiest, it's really worth it.

Dear readers, take a deep breath. Because it may be too cold for that later :-) I invite you for a trip to the far north, almost to Antarctica. To the big Vatnajokull Glacier and to the lake and the Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon in Iceland.

Glacier lagoon Fjallsárlón, Iceland

Fjallsárlón, or an iceberg lagoon

The Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon, the smaller sister of the larger Jokulsarlon lagoon, is nothing more than a lake formed as a result of the melting of the Vatnajökull glacier (the largest glacier in Europe), which is located in the south of Iceland. When we imagine this country, we mainly think about fjords and volcanoes, but on the island, we can also find views straight from Antarctica. And this is what this travel guide will be about.

Fjallsárlón, in other words, is also called a glacial or iceberg lake. All because of the fact that from the visible Jokulsarlon glacier, huge pieces of ice break off all the time, quietly drifting away on the lagoon. It creates an amazing atmosphere and landscape, as well as a beautiful, frozen panorama of Iceland.

Large groups of tourists can rarely be found on Fjallsarlon.

These pieces of ice drift so close to the shore that you can almost touch them. The glacier itself is equally close, which, unlike the Jokulsarlon glacial lagoon, seems to be at your fingertips. Thanks to this the Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon emanates with cold. So do not forget to bring warm jackets with you :-) If we listen to the sounds coming to Fjallsárlón, we will hear that something is happening on the glacier all the time - it cracks, once for a while a piece of ice falls off from it, sometimes a splash of water is heard.

If we add to the fact that not too many tourists and travelers come to the Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon (most of them are in rush to Jokulsarlon), we will find a beautiful place not only for photography, but also for contemplation.

Something extra: A video clip shot on the Fjallsárlón iceberg lake

If you want to see in the movie, what fantastic natural phenomenon is the Fjallsárlón glacial lake, the Icelandic band formed in 2012 and playing rock music called Kaleo gave us a great chance for this. They recorded the song "Save Yourself", which the whole video was recorded on the cold lagoon of Fjallsárlón.

Be sure to listen to this! The song has a great atmosphere and is a fantastic music background, for example for reading this travel article :-)

How are the iceberg lagoon formed?

Iceberg lagoons, or glacial lakes in these regions, are formed from water from the melting branches of the Vatnajökull glacier. This glacier has been moving toward center Iceland for almost 90 years, up to 500 meters each year. It is thanks to this phenomenon that we can enjoy such an iceberg lagoon as Fjallsárlón, which was created in the place from which the glacier moved, leaving behind the valley flooded with water.

Flooding Fjallsárlón, of course, took many years, it is not a fast process. But the effects are amazing. Vatnajökull glacier formed in this way three lakes, the largest of which increased four times over the last half-century. The parts of the ice that broke away from the glacier can drift over the Fjallsárloun lagoon for several years, slowly melting down to finally sail down to the Atlantic.

Seals at Fjallsarlon, Iceland


One of the biggest attractions when it comes to wildlife on the Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon in Iceland are the resident seals that joyfully jump on the waves of the lake to disappear in the depths of the water. In addition, in the summer we can meet the so-called skuas, large species of seabirds, living in nearby nests.

Skuas can be dangerous. Very often, as part of self-defense, they are able to drop many kinds of natural "bombs" on people, if they approach too close to their nests and eggs.

Wildlife in Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon can fascinate, but it should be remembered that we do not always meet animals here, sometimes they can be somewhere else. Despite everything, a glacial lake is a fantastic place for both ordinary tourists and for picky travelers.

Boat tours on the Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon

Tourist attractions near Fjallsárlón

Well, there are not too many tourist attractions near Fjallsárlón, as it is a place located rather in the wild. We will find here, however, a place where you can eat something warm and we can get a Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon boat tour, which I heartily recommend.

Boat tours on the lagoon

Going on a boat tour on the Fjallsárlón lagoon is a fantastic way to see the icebergs up close. Given that the closer you get to the glacier, the colder it will be, you will get warm protective clothes on the boat. Ships are usually very small and usually cannot take more than ten tourists on board, so it's worth to order such boat tours in advance via the internet, especially if you are going to Fjallsárlón during the season.

During a boat tour on the Fjallsárlón lake, the guide will tell you in English some interesting stories about glaciers and their origin. Cruises are relatively short and last less than an hour, but there is nothing to feel the closeness and coldness of a real glacier.


At the Fjallsárlón lagoon, we find a small restaurant, located in wooden buildings with lots of glass. It is ideal for travelers who forget to take their own food with them. We can eat here sandwiches, salads, soups, cakes, and sweets.

In high season, in the summer, the restaurant near Fjallsárlón is open from 09:30 to 18:00, and in the offseason, in winter, it is open from 10:00 to 17:00. As in every restaurant in Iceland, it's quite expensive here, so it's always good to take your own food to Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon.

Fjallsarlon glacial lake

Accommodation and hotels at the Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon

Unfortunately, we do not find any accommodation directly at the Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon. The nearest hotels can be found on the national road number 1 (Ring Road) to the west: Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon (20 kilometers by car) and Hof 1 Hotel (+9 kilometers more), in the town of Höf. Going even further we will go to Hótel Skaftafell, although it is already over 42 kilometers from the Fjallsárlón lagoon, up to the Skaftafell National Park.

Driving the Ring Road to the east, the nearest hostel called Reynivellir can be found after 22 kilometers. A slightly larger selection can be found for the next 3 kilometers, where there is one hotel (Hali Country Hotel) and two guesthouses (Skyrhúsid Guest House and Gerdi Guesthouse). The next hotel (Hotel Smyrlabjorg) is located 44 kilometers east of the Fjallsárlón lagoon. After that, there are no more hotels until the port town of Höfn.

It is worth noting that accommodation in Iceland is not the cheapest, as it is one of the richest countries in Europe (at least when it comes to earnings). The challenge is to find accommodation for 80 dollars, and usually prices range from 120 USD to even 300 USD per night.

Floating icebergs on Fjallsárlón

How to get to the Fjallsárlón glacial lagoon?

Although the Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon in Iceland is not visible from the main road number 1 (called Ring Road), this glacial lake is practically right near the road. Fjallsárlón is located 10 kilometers west of the famous Jökulsárlón and 47 kilometers east of Skaftafell. Driving from Reykjavík to the east, we reach the Fjallsárlón glacial lake after 370 kilometers (about 5 hours of driving).


To get here, take a small gravel road leading north inland (turn left if you are driving from Reykjavík). The road will be marked with a sign, so you should not overlook it (in addition, the Vatnajökull glacier itself is visible from a distance). After driving 1.5 kilometers, you will get to the parking lot, where you can leave your car. Parking at Fjallsárlón is completely free. Keep in mind that due to snow and ice, this road can be very difficult to drive in the winter.

After leaving the car, we go for a short walk along the path through the hill towards the north, after which we will see a beautiful view and panorama of the Fjallsárlón iceberg lake.

Fjallsárlón and the Vatnajökull glacier

Practical information

Below you will find a small summary, as well as a set of practical information on both the Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon and the whole of Iceland.

  • Fantastic in Iceland is that all of its natural wonders, such as waterfalls, lakes or geysers (including the Fjallsárlón lagoon) are free. This also applies to parking lots.
  • Many tourist offices have a Fjallsárlón iceberg lake tours, so if traveling on your own is not in your nature, it is worth your interest.
  • There is a large, free car park right at the Fjallsárlón lagoon. Already from it, we can admire a significant part of the Vatnajökull glacier in Iceland.
  • Going towards the glacier, there is no specific path, so you choose where you want to go. Note: It can be a bit slippery.
  • There is one small restaurant near Fjallsárlón, but it is quite expensive.
  • We do not always find here a large number of floating pieces of the glacier. If they are not there, we will have a better view of the Vatnajökull glacier itself.
  • Often we can see swimming seals at the Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon.
  • In the summer it is better not to approach birds that look like big seagulls (called skuas), because they can attack you in defense of their eggs.
  • You can take a boat trip on the Fjallsárlón lagoon to get as close as possible to the glacier. However, it is worth to buy such a cruise online in advance, especially in summer.


The lake and the Fjallsárlón iceberg lagoon in Iceland is a fantastic place where we can feel almost like Antarctica. In addition to amazing views and panoramas, floating ice pieces and the glacier itself, it also happens to see cheerfully swimming seals here.

If you liked this travel guide about Fjallsárlón and my blog or you have any questions about the lagoon or Iceland, write me a comment below, I will be happy to answer.

Wojciech Kuźma

Hey there! My name is Wojtek and I am very happy that you came to my travel blog. I've been traveling the world for a few good years now and I still want more.

On my website I describe the adventures that have happened to me, you will also find here a collection of valuable tips for tourists and travelers. If you liked this article, be sure to leave a comment and read some more!

4.93 | 14 votes
Comments: 1
  •   12th October 2018, 10:17

    Look, I was so close, and I did not even know that something like the Fjallsárlón glacial lagoon is in Iceland at all! We passed during our trip next to it at a distance of maybe 5 kilometers ... Thanks for a helpful tourist guide, next time going to Iceland we will definitely come here! This text was translated automatically. Original text is below: No zobacz, byłem tak blisko, a nawet nie wiedziałem, że coś takiego jak laguna lodowcowa Fjallsárlón w ogóle znajduje się na Islandii! Przejeżdżaliśmy podczas naszej podróży obok niej w oddaleniu może 5 kilometrów... Dzięki za pomocny poradnik turystyczny, następnym razem jadąc do Islandii na pewno tu przyjedziemy!

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