Reynisdrengur - vik

Vík & Reynisdrangar – South Iceland

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Vík & Reynisfjara Beach

Vík í Mýrdal is situated on the south shore of Iceland. Vík was once a fishing village. Men would launch their midsize fishing boats from the black sand beach, which was a very dangerous occupation given the huge surf here.

Everywhere along the shoreline are reminders of some serious ship wrecks, including a memorial to drowned seamen whose boats were likely caught up in the rocky shore around Reynisdrangur.


Private Northern Lights Tours

Jökulhlaup Threat

The residents of Vik live with the threat of glacier floods (Jökulhlaup) from a Katla volcano eruption under Mýrdalsjökull glacier. Such floods come every 100 years and are described as the biggest floods humans have ever experienced. The biblical film ‘Noah’ was filmed in the area.

Reyniskirkja Church in Vík

The church is situated high on a hill and is the site of refuge should any serious eruption occur. Local people practice running up to the church on Wednesdays.


Vík Tourist Facilities

Vík is now a principle tourist destination as it lies on the number 1 road at a reasonable distance for a day trip from Reykjavik. Vík is often the furthest point on most South Coast photo tours. Vík also serves as a useful resting point as it is half way from Reykjavik to Jökulsarlon glacier lagoon & ice-beach.

It is possible to connect with local tours on the Mýrdalsjökull glacier, such as the Mýrdalsjökull Ice cave.

There is a very busy grill that shares its car park with a busy gift store, and this is all across the road from one of Iceland’s largest campsites and a long golf course.

Vík í Mýrdal beach - South Coast Iceland
Black sand beach at Vík í Mýrdal.

Reynisdrangar sea stacks

Most of the town is obsessed with the Reynidrangar sea stacks. You can spot the shape in many places. Legend has it that this was a tröll who was frozen in the morning light as he tried to tow his sailing ship ashore. Most photographers also obsess about the sea stacks, which can be seen from two beaches. The iconic shape is best viewed from Vík beach.

From the other black beach at Reynisfjara, the stacks appear in a different configuration and can be seen along with one of the finest examples of basalt hexagons. The sea can be very dangerous, and it has claimed the lives of several unsuspecting tourists.

Photo tips:

During the winter, always check the weather and road conditions for because the elevated road approaching Vík can be very dangerous and often closes in severe winter storms. If you get it wrong, you could end up stranded in Vik for several unintentional hours.

With the sea stacks in mind, explore the town to find different angles and different foregrounds. The best moments on the Vík side beach are winter sunsets, but the light in the town is better on winter mornings.

Danger of death!

You should observe the safety warnings, especially on the Reynisfjara side. The information points called the dangerous waves “Sneaker waves”, but they should be called Doc Martin waves.

Reynisdrangar sea stacks Reynisfjara beach
Reynisdrangar sea stacks from Reynisfjara beach.

Day Tours to Vík

A selection of South Coast sightseeing tours from Viator are featured below. These south coast day tours depart from Reykjavik and include Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss waterfalls, Vik black sand beach, and more. In many ways, the south coast tour of Iceland is difficult to beat in a day.

Private South Coast

These private tours will allow you to spend more time at your favourite locations.

South Coast by Minibus

Save a bit of money with these minibus tours of Iceland’s south coast. Hand-picked for their’small group’ policies.

Reynisfjall mountain

The bird cliffs that overlook the village of Vik are part of Reynisfjall Mountain. The ring road crosses Reynisfjall mountain before descending into Vik, but there is a challenging 4×4 track that will take you up on top of the sea cliffs. This road requires a serious Jeep and driver and gets worse as it gets higher. From the top of the track, there are amazing views over the village of Vik. From the bird cliffs, it is possible to get close to puffins in the summer. The cliff has great views over the Reynisdrangar sea stacks.

Reynisdrangar basalt sea stacks taken from the Reynisfjall mountain.

The sea cliffs accommodate a large puffin colony. The best time to see puffins is from May – August. This location is featured on our Iceland Puffin Map.  The western edge of the cliffs gives you a great view along the black-sand beach of Reynisfjara. The black sand stretched towards the Dyrholaey sea arch.

Where to Stay


Vik Accommodation

Use the sponsored links to find hotels close to Vik & Dýrholaey.
Reynisfjara beach
Reynisfjara black sand beach from the Reynisfjall mountain.

Activities from Vik

These Iceland nature activities are in Vik, or depart from Vik. These are useful if you are on a Self-Drive tour or staying in the area.

Lava Fields – Volcanic Iceland
Snaefellsnes lava field.

There are places in Iceland that make you feel like a visitor to another planet. Iceland’s Lava Fields are frequent in the…

Top 10 Aurora Locations in Iceland
Namaskard Northern Lights

This guide discusses some of the best locations for photographing the Northern lights.  My top ten locations are from the North, South,…

Mount Vestrahorn & Stokksnes
vestrahorn mountain

Vesturhorn mountain has historical significance and has Natural Beauty. Vestrahorn Mountain is best viewed from Stokksnes, drive out towards the radar station…

Winter waterfalls in Iceland
Gulllfoss winter waterfall

Iceland could be know as the land of waterfalls. There are so many that nobody knows how many there are exactly. In…


Volcano Tour
Crater eruption

The rumbling of thunder amidst the veil of thick black ash plumes puts things into perspective for you. Maybe we feel the…

Plan a Self-Drive Iceland Tour
Pink sky at Jokulsarlon

One of the cheapest ways to experience the incredible nature of Iceland is to rent a car and drive yourself. Your hire…


Multi-Day Snæfellsnes Peninsula
Summer night photo tours

Multi-day Iceland Tours with erupting geysers, waterfalls & sea cliffs & then stay in a fishing village waiting for auroras on…

South Iceland Multi-Day Tours
Iceland glacier lake

A multi-day tour of South Iceland will give you incredible photo opportunities. The South coast is rich with, glacier ice, towering waterfalls…