Solheimasandur in Iceland is just sand but what glorious sand. PIC Grit Matias

Solheimasandur in Iceland is just sand but what glorious sand. PIC Grit Matias

F or all those not inclined to do a tiny bit of research into the country being visited the black beaches of Southern Iceland usually make visitors ecstatic.

Indeed, of those making the effort of compiling some info before heading off a large amount of the mail Total Iceland gets daily almost as many are asking about the „black sands“ as are asking about the Golden Circle.

If we told you about the many types of different beaches to be found on this weird island of ours you´d probably be stunned. Apart from the man-made golden sand beach in Reykjavik city at Nautholsvik, you can find absolutely gorgeous red beaches in the Westfjords and in the East lovely pebble beaches line some parts of the coast. Pretty damn diverse for a small place in the middle of nowhere.

The black beaches are indeed impressive to see and never more so than in pouring rain or when wet. The usually black sand then turns ultra-black and the color of ultra-black glistening over miles and miles of coastline is a sight for any sore eyes. If you find yourself there while the midnight sun is casting its reddest glare over the horizon you can stay at home for the rest of days certain that you have seen the most glorious thing on earth.

But while you will have to travel all the way to Vik and Solheimasand to find the black coastline stretching for years on end you certainly do not have to go that far to experience such blackness in lesser quantities. Most coastline on the Reykjanes peninsula is also covered in black sand. A specially noteworthy place is the sand beaches close to Thorlakshofn village where locals sometimes gather during summer for the „beachy“ experience.

Certainly we recommend a trip to the Vik and Solheimasandur area if possible. Driving time from Reykjavik to Vik is roughly three hours and in theory you can take in the sights and head back in one day. But that is not how you enjoy the experience. A „quickie“ here is like most other „quickies.“ Over all too soon. Stay a night and take it all in.

Besides there is much more to see and love in the area than the black beaches. You will just be disappointed not to have seen everything. Thus, if the choice is between a hurried and costly tour or nothing, you´d do well just to drive around Reykjanes peninsula, stop where you want, and lie down in the dark sand alone much of the coastline.


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