Kirkjufell

See one of the most famous mountains in Iceland for yourself.

Snæfellsnes peninsula
A man standing below Kirkjufellsfoss
Best time to visit
All year
Open
Every day
Parking
Approx. 1000 ISK
Charging station
No

Epic fjord views, a cascading waterfall, and more are waiting for you at Kirkjufell, Iceland

Located in West Iceland, Kirkjufell is found on the northern side of the Snæfellsnes peninsula. You could visit the mountain on a guided day tour from Reykjavík, or make it a stop on your Iceland road trip.

In recent years, Kirkjufell mountain has been thrown into the limelight. This is partly thanks to it being used as a filming location for the TV series Game of Thrones. Not to mention the fact that snaps of this pyramidal peak look dreamy on Instagram.

With all of the buzz around it, you might be wondering if it’s actually worth visiting. But when you get to Kirkjufell, you’ll soon realise there’s more to this stunning place than getting the perfect shot. 

What to see and do at Kirkjufell

While the mountain is easy to spot as you pass by on the road, make sure you head to the Kirkjufell and Kirkjufellsfoss waterfall viewpoint. This is one of the best places to appreciate its beauty. 

After just a short walk from the roadside parking lot, you’ll be wowed by a view of the waterfall with the mountain as a backdrop. From here, the peak’s steeple shape makes it obvious why it was named Kirkjufell (‘church mountain’). 

Another excellent viewpoint to check out is Kolgrafarfjördur. It’s about 12 km (7.5 mi) away from Kirkjufell, a drive of around 10 minutes. Head to this higher spot overlooking the bay and you’ll glimpse the mountain from a less recognizable, but just as beautiful, angle. 

Not far from Kirkjufell is the fishing town of Grundarfjörður. It’s the perfect place to stop for something to eat or drink. And if you have time, you could visit the Saga Center Grundarfjörður to learn a bit about the local area. 

Slightly further away, but also well worth visiting, is the colorful and charming town of Stykkishólmur. And you’ll spot Snæfellsjökull glacier, which sits on top of a volcano at the western end of the peninsula. 

What’s more, there’s Arnarstapi village, on the south side of Snæfellsnes, where you can take in jaw-dropping scenery from a short clifftop trail.

Other attractions near Kirkjufell

The Snæfellsjökull glacier at sunset

Snæfellsjökull Glacier & National Park

Discover the Snæfellsnes peninsula’s national park, home to a glacier-topped volcano and more.

33 km (21 mi)

View
Gatklettur rock arch at Arnarstapi

Arnarstapi

Discover breathtaking coastal walks from this fishing village on the Snæfellsnes peninsula.

50 km (31 mi)

View
The black sand of the Djúpalónssandur beach

Djúpalónssandur

Walk across polished pebbles on this rugged black sand beach.

57 km (35 mi)

View
Town of Borgarnes from above

Borgarnes

Learn about the Viking settlement of Iceland in the local haunt of a legendary figure from the sagas.

103 km (64 mi)

View

FAQs about Kirkjufell

Kirkjufell mountain is located on the Snæfellsnes peninsula in West Iceland. It’s less than 3 km (2 mi) from the small town of Grundarfjörður.

There’s a parking lot especially for Kirkjufell that you’ll find just west of Grundarfjörður on road 54.

Mount Kirkjufell’s interesting shape has made it one of the most photographed mountains in Iceland. In fact, because it looks like a church tower from certain angles, its name means ‘church mountain’.

Plus, you might recognise Kirkjufell from the hit TV show Game of Thrones. Since it was used as a filming location for the series, the mountain has become a must-visit stop if you’re touring the Snæfellsnes peninsula.

Following a series of serious accidents on Kirkjufell, access to the mountain itself has been banned. This is because the route to the top is too dangerous.

That said, you can have an unforgettable visit by simply heading to the Kirkjufellsfoss waterfall viewpoint at the base of the mountain. In fact, this is where you’ll get the best views of Kirkjufell.

Visit Kirkjufell in winter and you could be treated to the magical sight of the Northern Lights dancing behind this distinctive mountain.

You’ll have the best chance of spotting the aurora in Iceland if you travel between October and March.

You can get to Kirkjufell by joining one of the many guided day tours leaving from Reykjavík. Base yourself in the capital on a multi-day tour and you can choose from a number of handpicked day trips into the countryside.

For instance, you could be discovering the Snæfellsnes peninsula one day and touring the well-known Golden Circle route the next.

Or why not rent a car for a road trip around Iceland’s Ring Road? By choosing a self-drive trip, you can go at your own pace and choose where you want to stop along the way.

From Borganes, on the Ring Road, it’s a detour of around 100 km (62 mi) to see Kirkjufell. But it’s worth extending your journey to take in even more of the peninsula’s natural attractions.