Gullfoss still exists only because Sigríður Tómasdóttir, daughter of the owner of the estate that incorporated the falls, fought first her father and then the government to prevent a hydroelectric dam being built here in the 1920s. Permission to build the dam was granted, but public feeling – fanned by Sigríður – ran so strongly against the project that construction never began. Gullfoss was donated to the Icelandic Nature Conservation Council, and the area became a protected reserve in 1979.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

Iceland features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Tackling overtourism: where next for Iceland?

Tackling overtourism: where next for Iceland?

Last year, there were six tourists in Iceland for every local. As overtourism becomes an increasingly hot topic, Keith Drew looks at the effects of Iceland’s …

08 Feb 2018 • Keith Drew local_activity Special feature
20 picturesque Christmas destinations

20 picturesque Christmas destinations

Dreaming of a trip this Christmas? We're here to help. From glittering cities to a few snowy escapes, here are 20 classic destinations for a festive break. …

12 Dec 2017 • Rough Guides Editors camera_alt Gallery
Iceland: top 10 hot pools to take a dip

Iceland: top 10 hot pools to take a dip

An outdoor soak is an essential part of the Icelandic experience – a surreal way to spend a dark winter's day, or to unkink those muscles after a long day's h…

26 Sep 2017 • David Leffman insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right