Ásbyrgi is a true nature pearl of Iceland. It is an enclosed canyon shaped like a gigantic horseshoe. It is about 3.5 km long and over 1 km wide. The cliffs surrounding it get up to 100 m high and in the centre is a 250 m wide cliff, called the Island. The shape of the canyon derives from a legend of the horse of Óðinn, the chief god of Norse mythology. According to the legend, the horse stepped down in Iceland and left its giant hoof print. However today scientists have come up with different theories on why Ásbyrgi is shaped like a horseshoe. Evidence of catastrophic floods can be seen all along the river and the scientists’ theories are that Ásbyrgi was formed in two catastrophic floods over 3 – 10 thousand years ago. A trip to Ásbyrgi is an experience you will never forget.
In 1978 Ásbyrgi became part of Jökulsárgljúfur National Park.