Address to type into Google Maps for the turnoff: GPS coordinates 63.4912391,-19.3632810 (this is simply the entrance to the Black Sand Beach) See details below
Vehicle Tips: We had a 4×4 Camper Van which we suggest for winter, but in the summer no 4×4 is needed
Site Tip: Go in this order Seljalandsfoss, then Skogafoss, then Abandoned Airplane Wreckage. Go to the abandoned plane an hour before the sun rises and/or the sun sets. If it’s a clear night, you maybe be able to shoot the Northern Lights as well!
When I was traveling in late March, early April 2015 I had done a significant amount of research to make the most efficient and effective route to see everything in our two week trip. I had seen the famous abandoned plane in Iceland on Instagram and the more I searched for it the more I wanted to experience it for myself. It has become such an iconic visual landmark of Iceland and I can easily say it was one of the coolest spots I have ever camped at! Yes we camped right beside the plan in our camper van. This is a photographer’s dream all day and all night you can get some very unique perspectives.
The brief background story of the wreckage is in 1973, a US Navy Douglas Super DC-3 airplane had to make an emergency landing on Solheimasandur’s black sand beach in South Iceland either due to significant ice build-up and/or some say it may have ‘run out’ of fuel as the pilot forgot to switch fuel tanks over. All passengers survived so that makes the spot a bit more comfortable to be at. The hollow fuselage allows the artic gale force winds to pass right on through as well the rain, freezing rain and snow.
Before I discuss how to get to the abandoned airplane wreckage on the black sand beach I would just like to say please respect the site for current visitors and for future visitors. Keep the plane intact and share the space as it may get crowded.
- After Skogafoss the turnoff to the road is only 9.3 km or 9 minutes down the road or so.
- I would keep close track of this at night so you can be sure to locate the turnoff on the right hand side of the road heading East.
- If you do not have a phone with data to use, just use your odometer from Skogafoss heading East and pay close attention to the right hand side of the road. You will see the gate
- One you find this turn off as see here on the map below then drive slow on the black sand beach as the potholes are difficult to see!
- You will typically follow car tracks on the black sand beach that are obvious, or follow the snow tracks and follow this while veering to the left and a 3-4km or so from the road you will see the site! Remember follow the tracks along and stay left heading South towards the beach rather than directly West.
When I was driving our 5 speed 4×4 van on the way out, I hit a massive pothole that could have caused some serious damaged, but we lucked out. Let me know if this posts helps out with your Iceland adventure!