Gardskagi Lighthouses rejseguide
The Gardskagi lighthouses are two quaint Icelandic monuments standing next to each other at the tip of Gardur village in Reykjanes Peninsula.
There are currently no specific tours that will take you to the double lighthouses of Gardur. Fortunately, some excursions will allow you to add a visit on, like this Private 5-Hour Guided Tour of Reykjanes and this 10-Hour Jeep Tour of Reykjanes with Blue Lagoon.
While the Gardskagi lighthouses aren’t as famous as other attractions on the peninsula, their historical significance and stunning coastal views are enough for travelers to visit the area.
Photo from Flickr, Creative Commons, by Jonathan Miske. No edits made.
About the Gardskagi Lighthouses
Location of the Lighthouses of Gardur
The double lighthouses of Gardskagi nestle in the northernmost tip of Reykjanes Peninsula, particularly in the village of Gardur. Reykjanes is known for its barren and rugged landscapes because of its active volcanic and geothermal activities.
Gardur and the Gardskagi, written as Garður and Garðskagi in Icelandic, are most accessible from the Keflavik International Airport, just 7.5 miles (12 kilometers) away. Meanwhile, the tourist locations are 37 miles (60 kilometers) from Iceland’s capital, Reykjavik.
The Old Gardur Lighthouse
Gardskagi is a unique Icelandic attraction because it features not one but two beautiful lighthouses next to each other.
The first of the two towers, sometimes called Gardur old lighthouse, was built in 1897. When most people envision lighthouses, they picture them as tall, but this particular lighthouse is small. Its unusual height is one of the reasons why Icelanders consider it one of the most beautiful lighthouses in Iceland.
It served its duty for decades, guiding ships safely into Gardur’s harbors. Fortunately, you can still get close to the building and marvel at its white walls with two orange stripes.
Photo from Wikimedia, Creative Commons, by Petr Kraumann. No edits made.
The Second Gardskagi Lighthouse
The second Gardskagi lighthouse, built in 1944, is just a few meters away from the old tower. The tower is white like the older Gardur lighthouse but is cylindrical and much taller at 92 feet (28 meters).
With the towering height and strategic location of the Gardskagi lighthouse, it has also become a bird observatory for local and foreign tourists.
What to See and Do in the Gardskagi Lighthouses
The coastal and northernmost position of the Gardur lighthouses in Reykjanes gives them a stunning vantage point of the surrounding seas and scenic mountains.
From the coastline and especially on the observation decks of the Icelandic lighthouses, the entire Faxafloi bay is visible. In the summer months, whale watching from Reykjavik is one of the best things to do on the bay and in Iceland.
The taller Gardskagi lighthouse is an excellent viewing deck of the surrounding landscape across the bay. On a clear day, you can get a spectacular view of Mount Esjan to the east and the Snaefellsnes Peninsula to the north of the tower.
During the winter, the observatory is a fantastic spot to catch a glimpse of the aurora borealis. You get an incredible view of the northern lights standing at the top of the tower, away from the city lights. Joining excursions like the eight-hour northern lights tour from Reykjavik or this luxury private northern lights tour in Iceland will give you the best chance to spot the enchanting lights.
Other Attractions Nearby Gardskagi Lighthouses
The Gardskagi lighthouses and Gardur village are spectacular attractions in the land of fire and ice. They are also excellent central points for those wishing to explore other scenic spots on the peninsula.
For travelers more oriented toward adventures, the Fagradalsfjall volcano in Geldingadalur valley is only 26 miles (42.3 kilometers) from Gardur.
The Fagradalsjall area underwent back-to-back eruptions in 2021 and 2022, creating otherworldly fresh lava fields that you can see up close on hiking tours like on this eight-hour hike of the Meradalir valley and Fagradalsfjall volcano.
One of Iceland’s most popular attractions is only 18 miles (29.7 kilometers) south of Gardskagi. Blue Lagoon, a stunning and world-class geothermal spa, is the best place to experience geothermal bathing. Visitors can bask in the warm, mineral-rich waters and eat at the on-site restaurant by joining Blue Lagoon tours.
The Gunnuhver mud pits are also south of Gardur. While a field of mud pools doesn’t sound enticing, these pits are fascinating and have a wide range of colors. Likewise, the entire area is also known for its interesting local legends and folklore.
If you intend to hike to Fagradalsfjall volcano or bathe in the relaxing waters of the Blue Lagoon, making Gardur your connecting point is an excellent choice. The village has excellent amenities, from restaurants to accommodations like Guesthouse Gardur Apartments and Lighthouse Inn.