East Iceland

East Iceland is home to the beautiful Eastfjords region. Hugging the coastline and rising high above sea level, even driving here is an amazing experience! Sparsely populated, eastern Iceland is a place of forests, mountains, and waterfalls, ready for you to discover.

The edge of the Vatnajökull glacier
View over the Fellabær neighborhood of Egilsstaðir
Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon at sunrise with a pink sky
The edge of the Vatnajökull glacier
View over the Fellabær neighborhood of Egilsstaðir

More attractions in East Iceland

FAQs about East Iceland

The Eastfjords are a region of east Iceland characterized by, you guessed it, fjords! The jagged coastline here is high above sea level too. Combining the steep valleys, dramatic cliffs, and deep blue fjords, you’ll encounter incredible scenery like nowhere else in Iceland.

It’s easy to get to east Iceland by taking the Ring Road. This is perfect if you’re doing a longer self-drive vacation (10 days or so) and exploring everything Iceland has to offer.

You can also reach East Iceland by a short internal flight from Reykjavík to the town of Egilsstaðir.

East Iceland is perfect if you’re planning a trip that combines breathtaking nature with quiet Icelandic life. There are plenty of hidden gems for you to discover.

Here’s just some of what you could see and do:

  • Stop off at quaint fishing villages in the Eastfjords
  • Check out the Icelandic Wartime Museum and learn about Iceland’s part in World War II
  • Follow the coastline and marvel at cliffs and black sand beaches
  • Spot summer visiting puffins in Borgarfjörður eystri
  • Go horseback riding along forest and coastal paths
  • Relax at the Vök baths, geothermal pools perfect for unwinding
  • Hike to the Hengifoss waterfall, set against basalt columns and giant boulders
  • Explore Hallormsstaðaskógur, the largest forest in Iceland

If you love picturesque little towns, a cultural heart, and original 19th-century timber houses, definitely stop by Seyðisfjörður! Named for the fjord it sits in, this charming town showcases so much of what makes the Eastfjords a beautiful place to visit.

The town is famous for the blue church Seyðisfjarðarkirkja. Framed by a spectacular coastal backdrop, the town has painted a bright rainbow road leading up to the door of the church. It’s a fabulous photo opportunity for you.

You can find lots of cute places to dine and shop, or why get active and explore the nearby hiking trails? Popular nearby hikes include some of the most beautiful waterfalls in Iceland, like Búðaráfoss and Hengifoss.

One of the best places to see puffins in Iceland is Borgarfjörður eystri. This is the most northerly fjord in the Eastfjords region, but it’s not called the puffin capital for nothing!

Up to 10,000 puffins nest here every summer, and the town is fully prepared to help you see them. You can watch from wooden platforms looking out over the cliffs, which is a safe way to get up close.

Although reindeer are not native to Iceland, there is a small population you can see. Reindeer were brought to Iceland from Norway in the 18th century, with the intention of farming them for meat. Numbers dwindled and farming them proved difficult, so the reindeer were set loose.

Now, there are around 3,000 reindeer in the Eastfjords region of Iceland. You can generally find them higher up in the summer, and then they come down to the coast in the winter.


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