Dettifoss is the Largest Waterfall in Europe
Dettifoss is an incredibly beautiful and powerful sight and the largest volume waterfall in Europe. It is located in northeast Iceland in Jökulsárgljúfur National Park along the Jökulsá á Fjöllum (river).
The river is fed by the largest glacier in Iceland called Vatnajökull. The Jökulsá á Fjöllum is the second longest river in Iceland and drains most of the northeast part of the island which causes the heavy volume flow of water at Dettifoss.
Dettifoss drops a total of roughly 144 feet, is 328 feet wide and has a water flow of over 500 cubic meters per second during the spring runoff. Its water flow is magnificent and leaves a lasting impression.
What also leaves a lasting impression is the sheer beauty of the canyon the river has carved out both above Dettifoss and below the mighty waterfall.
In addition to mighty Dettifoss there are number of other waterfalls along the Jökulsá á Fjöllum and canyon it has so majestically carved in the area. Selfoss is upstream from Dettifoss and further down the canyon is Hafragilsfoss. Also in the area is Urriðafoss but if anyone wants to see that waterfall they had better hurry because plans are underway to build a hydroelectric power plant at Urriðafoss which will effectively make the waterfall disappear.
Image Source (nearby Selfoss)
The east side of Dettifoss can be reached along Route 864 while the west side is reached from Route 862. The roads are not great if you want to rent a vehicle and drive but if that is a problem tour buses do go up to Dettifoss. If you do go you must be careful as the powerful Dettifoss is continually eating away at the river bank. Stand too close and you might just go over with some rocks. The gray milky color of the water at Dettifoss is testament to how much the river is eroding the earth and carrying away sediment and minerals here.
Dettifoss is so powerful that it sprays water continuously in the air which creates abundant opportunities to see rainbows on sunny days adding to the beauty of this already magnificent place.
If you love waterfalls and are visiting Iceland your journey will not be complete without a trip to powerful and beautiful Dettifoss the largest volume waterfall in Europe.