Ingjaldsholskirkja - church with an epic scenery

5 Cool Places in West Iceland You Probably Missed

Verified Local

The West of Iceland holds many treasures and some are better known than others. You might have heard of Arnarstapi or the beautiful black pebble beach Djúpalónssandur but what follows will be an introduction to a few places you might not have heard about. Why not enhance your adventure plans and add these to your itinerary.

  • Find tours to Snæfellsnes here.

1. Malarif Lighthouse

When you visit Lóndrangar, an amazing basalt cliff formation, you’ll be lucky to even find a parking space at the viewpoint. Most people will park, walk up to the viewpoint, take a selfie and then drive further. But there’s much more to do at this beautiful site.

Drive further to the Gestastofa visitor centre. From there you can take a nice walk through the golden grass to check out the Malariff Lighthouse. And the best part - you can hike back to Lóndrangar from the Malariff side! Not many people do that but it is a unique experience at a well-known place.

Malariff Lighthouse - an alternative starting point for visiting Londrangar

2. Skardsvik Beach

My personal top-of-mind connection with Iceland is ‘black sand beach’. I guess it has something to do with the amount of time I spent walking to and from the famous Sólheimasandur plane wreck in the South:). But Iceland’s West has something to offer, too!

  • Find South Coast tours here.

Skarðsvík beach is a hidden gem that can be found at the very tip of the Snaefellsnes peninsula. And what a surprise it is - the sand is white and combined with aquamarine water reminds rather a beach in southern Italy. So you might be tempted to take off your clothes and go for a swim. But beware! It’s still Iceland we’re talking about. Yes, that Iceland whose nickname is ‘The Land of Ice and Fire’. So maybe just enjoy the views.

Skardsvik - that's white sand beach and aquamarine blue water. Still Iceland?

Skardsvik looks a bit like a scene from a catalogue marketing vacations in Italy

3. Ingjaldsholskirkja Church

Catchy name and beautiful setting - that’s Ingjaldshólskirkja. Many visitors are rushing so hard towards Iceland’s iconic Kirkjufell that they fail to notice a beautiful scene that suddenly appears in front of the mountain backdrop. A rather unknown white church on a small hill. What a place to watch the sunrise!

Ingjaldsholskirkja - church with an epic scenery

4. Bjarnarhofn Church

Bjarnarhöfn is a tiny settlement on the Snaefellsnes peninsula. The name will probably sound more familiar combined with words ‘shark’ and ‘museum’. The family-run shark museum is the obvious attraction in the area.

But don’t miss Bjarnarhöfn’s lovely black church which is located just one minute walk towards the sea. The scene is phenomenal: snow-covered mountain tops, the sea in the background and a cute little black church sitting on grass apparently made of gold.

Budakirkja is not the only beautiful black church in Iceland - Bjarnarhöfn is a great example

5. Grundarfoss Waterfall

Nowadays, everybody knows names like Seljalandsfoss, Goðafoss or Skógafoss. But have you ever heard of Grundarfoss? This waterfall is no less beautiful than the other three but I count it to one of the most underrated places in Iceland. And it gets more spectacular with every step you get closer to it.

See - that’s the only tiny hook - visiting this waterfall will include some amount of (easy) hiking. It is also located in a water protection area (you’ll have to go through a gate) so be extra cautious to treat the site with care. You can find Grundarfoss next to the road no. 54, not far away from Kirkjufell. It has a small and a bit rough parking area.

Grundarfoss - the closer you get the bigger it seems. Oh wait, that's just physics :D

5 Cool Places in West Iceland You Probably Missed


Travel photographer, blogger and Gryffindor who's behind I create photo location guides and share tips for improving your photography.