Information à propos de Ásbyrgi

Asbyrgi Canyon in north Iceland is a centre of folklore and beauty.

Ásbyrgi Canyon is a spectacular horseshoe-shaped depression in the northeast of Iceland, steeped in folklore.

It is found only fifty miles east of Húsavík along the popular Diamond Circle route.

Geography of Ásbyrgi Canyon

This beloved natural feature measures approximately 3.5 kilometres (2.2 miles) in length and 1.1 kilometres (0.7 miles) in width. It is only a small corner of the extensive and dramatic Vatnajökull National Park, but undoubtedly one of its most breathtaking.

Visitors to Ásbyrgi will quickly take note of the canyon’s 100 metre (328) feet high cliff faces, as well as the thick woodland of birch and willow below, creating an area quite unlike that found anywhere else across Iceland.

Other tree species here include spruce, larch and pine, and there is a small lake called Botnstjörn which visitors can hike to. One of the canyon's most distinctive features is Eyjan ("The Island"), a 25m rock formation that divides Ásbyrgi for almost half its length.

Formation and Folklore of Ásbyrgi Canyon

Geologists estimate that Ásbyrgi Canyon began to form roughly eight to ten million years ago, just after the last Ice Age, following a catastrophic glacial flooding of the Jökulsá á Fjöllum river. This flooding likely occurred due to a volcanic eruption beneath the ice-cap, Vatnajökull glacier.

Later, only 3000 years ago, this process repeated itself, further sculpting the soul-stirring, spectacular gorge that we know and love today.

With that being said, Icelandic folklore dictates an alternative theory, as it does with many of the landmarks around the country. Given the canyon’s horseshoe shape, legend has it that Odin’s eight-legged steed, Sleipnir, placed one of his feet on the ground here, leaving a deep imprint on the earth, as it sprinted across the sky.

A wealth of art and literature has depicted Sleipnir as Ásbyrgi’s true creator. Other myths claim that Ásbyrgi is the capital city and true home to Iceland’s ‘hidden people’, the Huldufólk and elves. Many of Iceland’s folk stories revolve around these strange, magical people and the bizarre punishments and plots.

Self-professed psychics have claimed that they can see and hear these mystical beings living in cracks and ravines of the canyon. Much more likely to be hidden in the woodland, however, are Arctic Foxes.

Attractions near Ásbyrgi Canyon

Thankfully, a number of other fascinating attractions are easily accessible from Ásbyrgi Canyon. One could visit Hljóðaklettar, a strange and enchanting cluster of columnar rock formations located in the neighbouring Jökulsárgljúfur canyon.

Nearby, there is also Europe’s most powerful waterfall, Dettifoss, a striking and mighty spectacle for any observer; glacial water from the Jökulsá á Fjöllum cascades 44 metres (144 ft) over the lip of the falls, culminating in a misty, roaring spray.

The video below shows one of Iceland’s most famous post-rock bands, Sigur Ros, who chose to play an outdoor concert at Ásbyrgi in 2006, only adding to the area’s rich and ethereal atmosphere. This and the rest of their performances can be seen in the film Heima (2007).

 

Services vers Ásbyrgi

Tous les services dans 50km rayons

Lieux à proximité Ásbyrgi

Hljóðaklettar

Hljodaklettar (‘Echo Rocks’) is a distinctive cluster of columnar rock formations, located by Jokulsargljufur in Vatnajokull National Pa...

Voir

Vesturdalur Valley

credit: diamondcircle.is Vesturdalur Valley is an area in the north of Iceland known for its fascinating rock formations. It is situated in between ...

Voir

Nesgjá

Nesgja is a fresh water fissure in North Iceland, close to Husavik and Asbyrgi. It is one of Iceland‘s top dives.    As with the Silf...

Voir

Öxarfjörður

Oxarfjordur (a.k.a. Axarfordur) is a fjord in North-East Iceland between the headlands Tjornes and Melrakkasletta. As the fjord is rather wide, it mi...

Voir

Hafragilsfoss

  Downstream of Dettifoss, Europe's most powerful waterfall, is another major waterfall, the thunderous Hafragilsfoss. Like Dettifoss, Hafr...

Voir

Gjástykki

  Gjastykki is a beautiful and rugged rift valley to the north of the caldera Krafla, in the north of Iceland. Gjastykki was literally blown ap...

Voir

Litlaá

The beautiful Littlaa is a fresh water river in the Kelduhverfi district by Oxafjordur in North Iceland and is one of Iceland‘s greatest trout r...

Voir

Dettifoss

Dettifoss is a waterfall found in North Iceland, said to be the most powerful in Europe. It is regularly visited on Diamond Circle tours and should ...

Voir

Jökulsárgljúfur

Jökulsárgljúfur is a canyon in Iceland that was once its own national park; now, it is part of the greater Vatnajökull Natio...

Voir

Selfoss (waterfall)

Selfoss is a beautiful waterfall in north Iceland, often visited on Diamond Circle tours. It is not to be confused with the town of the same name i...

Voir

Cercle de Diamant

The Diamond Circle is a famed 260 kilometre (162 mile) sightseeing route in the northeast of Iceland, characterised by its sheer number of natural a...

Voir

Víti in Krafla

Víti is an explosion crater in the Krafla fissure area of north Iceland.  Wikimedia, Creative Commons, Photo by Christian Wirth The...

Voir

Tjörnes

The stubby peninsula of Tjornes in North Iceland is one of the best-known geological locations of the country. Layers of fossil shells and lignite ca...

Voir

Krafla

Wikimedia, Creative Commons, Photo Credit: Earthquakes Krafla Krafla is a caldera, part of a greater volcanic system of the same name, located north ...

Voir

Leirhnjúkur

  Leirhnjukur ('Mud Peak') is a 525 m high active volcano, located to the northeast of Lake Myvatn in North Iceland. Leirhnjukur is pa...

Voir

Húsavík

Húsavík, by Skjálfandi Bay in North Iceland, is a town of just over two thousand people. It is considered to be one o...

Voir

Höfði

Wikimedia, Creative Commons, photo by Laurentgauthier Höfði is a building in Iceland’s capital, most famous for being the meeting poin...

Voir

Dimmugljúfur

Wikimedia. Creative Commons. Christian Bickel Fingalo.  Dimmugljúfur is a deep and dramatic canyon in northeast Iceland, a favourite amon...

Voir

Námaskarð

Námaskarð Pass is a geothermal area on the mountain Námafjall, in north Iceland, less than half an hour’s drive from Lake M&...

Voir

Knútstaðaborg

Knútsstaðaborg hollow is an open cave, or lava chamber, about 10 square metres (107 square ft.) in size. It is a site surrounded by bea...

Voir