South coast, Iceland
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The old Skeiðará bridge is a historic landmark in Iceland. It used to be the longest bridge in the country, connecting the eastern and western parts of the island. The bridge has now been replaced by a smaller and more modern structure, but remains a part of the landscape, an abandoned monument to a past era. Skeiðará bridge is situated in a beautiful black desert landscape in the world’s largest black sand expanse, Skeiðarársandur. The massive structure creates an intriguing atmosphere, surrounded by plains of volcanic ash as far as the eye can see. As a location, it has a unique appearance, with the several glaciers and the country’s highest mountain as a backdrop.

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  • Lighting conditions

    Lighting conditions

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  • Accessibility, services and permits

    Accessibility, services and permits

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  • Visitors and risk factors

    Visitors and risk factors

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The location is just off route no 1. The bridge itself is 880 meters long and you can drive up to it from both ends in 4x4 cars with permission from the National Park. Off-road driving is strictly forbidden in Iceland.
Public transportation unavailable
There is no public transportation available in this area
Car recommended
Unchallenging terrain accessible by car
Excellent phone coverage
Great phone coverage without interruptions
Not needed
Guide is not needed

Services nearby

There are many hotels and lodgings options within 50 kilometres from this location. The nearest hospital is in Höfn, 138 kilometres away. Kirkjubæjarklaustur is 62 km away, there you find shops and other services.
< 30 km
Gas station
< 30 km
Hospital or emergency room
More than 50 km away
< 1 km
< 30 km
More than 50 km away


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You need a two-way permit. The area is a part of Vatnajökull National Park.
Shooting permits are issued by the local government

Basecamp and facilities

The landmark is just by route no 1. There are big gravel lots at both ends of the bridge that could be used as basecamps. There is also a big parking lot, 2.5 kilometres further east at a bridge monument, that could be utilised. Skaftafell Service Centre lies 5 kilometres away with all its facilities. Phone coverage is excellent.

Risk factors

The structure is old and not maintenance. The bridge is quite tall with low railings. It can get strenuous to work in the sand. Winds in the region can get extreme as there are no shelter anywhere nearby.


The bridge is not a part of any tourist attraction, but due to its picturesque nature, people tend to stop and take a picture.

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