Hjörleifshöfði & Yoda Cave

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For history explorers and travel enthusiasts, Hjörleifshöfði cave is a perfect place to visit. The cave is located in Hjörleifshöfði mountain, and is often called the Yoda Cave. The cave wasn’t well known until the Hollywood movie Star Wars Rougue one was filmed there. You can find unique caves all around Iceland, but this one is special for its shape and the views that you get when standing inside and watching the surrounding area through the opening of the cave. It is simply breath-taking.

 

The Yoda Cave is large with intense echoing and in a very unique form. If you have watched the Star Wars movie, you can see that you will recognize the cave’s opening as soon as you arrive. 

Named after Hjörleifur, the famous settler of Iceland’s History, the cave is located on the south coast of Iceland. With the panoramic view of hills, caves, and fields, this place will amaze you. Also known as the cape of Hjörleifur, the Hjorleifshofdi cave is a 221 meters giant rock made of volcanic eruptions during an ice age. You will find historical trails to cover around the cave that will give you a glimpse of beautiful fields. Standing tall majestically, this historical promontory attracts locals as well as other travelers. You can capture the magnificent view of huge rock standing above black sand in your camera. If you are a photographer or love to get your photos clicked then you will love this scenic cave and its mountain, located at a secluded place.

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view from Hjörleifshöfði mountain in south Iceland

History of the Cave

According to historians, Hjörleifur, the first settler in Iceland visited Iceland around the eighth century with his foster brother Ingólfur Arnarson. Both the brothers were sailing in different ships and they drifted apart on the way to Norway.  Ingólfur lived at Ingólfshöfði  and Hjörleifur landed at Hjörleifshöfði. After some time, the slaves of Hjörleifur turned against him and killed him. Slaves fled with his wife to Westman Islands. As Ingólfur got to know about the killing of his brother, he decided to take revenge and killed the slaves. At the top of  Hjörleifshöfði cave, Hjörleifur is believed to be buried.

Though it is hard to hike because of the steep path, there is a way on the west side of the rock that makes the hiking easier. You can reach the place where Hjörleifur was buried from the Bæjarstaður, the place where old farms of Hjörleifur was located. You will find a map of the cape with all the locations marked. After the hike of 7 km, which takes around 2-3 hours, you will get the view of Katla Volcano, Mýrdalsjökull glacier, and the black volcanic sand beach, Mýrdalssandur. If you are not willing to hike, then you can explore the roots of mountains from all sides. You will find the parking space nearby the place so you wouldn’t have to park the vehicle at a random place.

At the top of the rock, there is a remarkable burial mound that was raised near the burial site of Hjörleifur. After reaching the top, you can find the ruins of the field, once present in old age. A small waterfall is also present in one of the hills. Be careful while visiting the place as it is a known place for elves and hidden people.

If you are planning to go for a hike up to the Hjorleifshofdi mountain, then it will take around a half day so either you can find a nearby hotel or just keep your stuff in the vehicle. Being close to Vik, you will find many accommodation options. The place has many hotels and hostels so you can make a plan according to your trip.

view from the top of Hjörleifshöfði in south Iceland

Reaching The Burial Site of Hjörleifur

Located around 15 km east of Vik, Hjörleifshöfði cave is easily accessible. If you are driving from the city of Reykjavík, make a left turn to move in the south, towards the ocean. After driving for a few minutes on the ring road one, you will see the parking space on the west side of the rock. 

Don’t forget to bring a pair of boots if you want to be adventurous. Keep sufficient clothes according to the season as the weather becomes a little bit cold during the evening. To capture the beauty of the mount and its surrounding, keep a handy camera with you to make your journey memorable. 

Hjorleifshofdi mountain and yoda cave in south Iceland

Map of Hjörleifshöfði Cave

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