Home > Blog > Traveler’s Guide to Oxararfoss Waterfall in Iceland

Traveler’s Guide to Oxararfoss Waterfall in Iceland

12-06-2024

Oxararfoss Waterfall

What do you know about Iceland’s Oxararfoss Waterfall? This gorgeous waterfall in the southwest of Iceland is famous for its appearance in Game of Thrones and on the cover of Nine Inch Nails’ 1999 album, The Fragile.

Learn more about this incredible Iceland waterfall, situated in a historic national park at the meeting point of two tectonic plates, in our complete guide to Oxararfoss Waterfall. Let’s go!

All About Oxararfoss Waterfall

One of the 10,000 beautiful Icelandic waterfalls, Oxararfoss Waterfall is a major attraction in the UNESCO World Heritage Site that is Thingvellir National Park. Cascading down the basalt rocks lining the falls, the water of Oxararfoss Waterfall flows from the River Oxara out of the mighty Almannagjo Gorge, which is a fissure in between the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates that was used as a backdrop in Game of Thrones!

At 13 meters high and 6 meters wide, this human-made waterfall redirects water into a ravine, which was used by members of Iceland’s first parliament as far back as the 10th century. Oxararfoss becomes very icy and completely frozen over during winter. There’s also a fun legend that says that Oxararfoss turns into wine at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve!

Free to visit, this spectacular natural wonder is part of the world-renowned Golden Circle route in Iceland, which includes geothermal lagoons, hot springs, canyons, waterfalls and even a volcanic crater.

öxarárfoss Waterfall

Where is Oxararfoss Waterfall?

Located in the southwest of Iceland, Oxararfoss Waterfall sits just north of Lake Thingvallavatn. Part of the historic Thingvellir National Park, the most famous national park in Iceland, Oxararfoss Waterfall is around 53 kilometers from the Icelandic capital city of Reykjavik. This Thingvellir waterfall is easy to reach, being within easy driving distance from the capital and the most populated areas in Iceland (which are all in the southwest of the country).

How to Get to Oxararfoss Waterfall

To reach Oxararfoss Waterfall from Reykjavik, you’ll need to take Route 49 out of the city center until you reach Route 1, the main Ring Road in Iceland, then you’ll turn right onto Route 36, which will take you straight to Oxararfoss Waterfall.

We’re sure you’ll be pleased to know that it’s super easy to walk from the parking lot to Oxararfoss, as the parking spaces are very close to the falls.

Thingvellir National Park

What to Do Near Oxararfoss Waterfall

So, what exactly can you do to enjoy your time at Oxararfoss Waterfall? Here are our top tips and ideas!

Oxararfoss Hike

Being a Thingvellir National Park waterfall makes Oxararfoss the perfect place to enjoy an epic hike among incredible nature. As we already mentioned, the waterfall is super easy to reach from the parking lot, so you have an easy starting point for your Oxararfoss hike. 

You can take the moderately challenging 4.8 km loop trail from Oxararfoss to Thingvellir Visitor Center, which is popular with birdwatchers, runners and hikers. Along the way, you’ll be treated to stunning scenery everywhere you look.

Thingvellir

While visiting Oxararfoss Waterfall, you definitely have to spend time exploring the rest of Thingvellir National Park. As the home of the world’s first parliament, a tectonic plate ridge, a geothermal valley and much more, the natural wonders and cultural heritage sites of Thingvellir are not to be missed! Here, you can also explore the striking Silfra Fissure, perfect for a snorkeling adventure.

Northern Lights at Thingvellir

Visit Oxararfoss Waterfall and the Rest of Iceland For Yourself!

Ready to hit the road and visit Iceland for yourself? Get going with your Iceland rental car, perfect for the vacation of a lifetime exploring the fiery volcanoes, expansive glaciers, cascading waterfalls and steaming geothermal valleys all across our incredibly vibrant island. We look forward to welcoming you to Iceland soon!