Iceland Closes Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon to Tourists, Justin Bieber Video Blamed

By Anna Breuer on 23 March 2019
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DSC_0740 (1)Icelandic officials are closing Fjaðrárgljúfur, a massive canyon in the Katla geopark in southeast Iceland that the river Fjaðrá flows through.

Visitors to Fjaðrárgljúfur typically walk along a path on the canyons’ edge, but now what is one of the country’s most popular scenic attractions will be closed until June.

As Iceland’s popularity as a tourism destination has skyrocketed, so has the number of visitors to Fjaðrárgljúfur and other natural wonders. In 2018, the country welcomed 2.3 million visitors, a 5% increase over 2017. A mere 350,000 people actually live in Iceland, it should be noted.

Iceland is known for numerous natural wonders, ranging from the Blue Lagoon, Þingvellir National Park, the Gullfoss waterfall, and the Kerið volcanic crate.

The gorge is popular with tourists and photographers who appreciate its tall, sheer photogenic canyon walls It’s also become increasingly popular – some would say overrun with tourists – , ever since Justin Bieber featured it in his music video “I’ll Show You” in late 2015.

The number of visitors to Fjaðrárgljúfur has increased from 150,000 in 2017 to 282,000 in 2018 and has suffered damage from the increased foot traffic. As a result, the Environment Agency of Iceland had initially planned to close Fjaðrárgljúfur for two weeks in order to allow the paths and vegetation around the gorge to improve but later decided to keep it closed until June as the two-week period wasn’t sufficient.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

Accura News

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