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Torfhús Retreat

We would love to invite you to experience precious moments at Torfhús Retreat, a place where traditional Icelandic culture meets modern luxurious standards in a way you have never seen before.

Torfhús Retreat is a hotel located in Southern Iceland. Inspired by traditional and Viking architectural influences, it blends perfectly with the surrounding natural landscape.

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Torfhús Retreat

Dalsholt

GPS Points N64° 14' 59.453" W20° 18' 18.619"
Telephone

+354 788-8868

Opening period All year
Categories Hotels , Apartments

Travel directory for Torfhús Retreat

The official travel index of Iceland

Others

Geysir Golf Club
Golf Courses
  • Haukadalur
  • 801 Selfoss
  • 486-8733
Slakki Mini Zoo
Mini-Zoo & Open farm
  • Laugarás
  • 801 Selfoss
  • 486-8783, 693-0132, 868-7626
Við Faxa
Camping
  • Heiði
  • 801 Selfoss
  • 774-7440
Kristján Einir Traustason
Day Tours
  • Einiholt 2
  • 801 Selfoss
  • 898-7972
Secret Lagoon
Swimming Pools
  • Hvammsvegur
  • 845 Flúðir
  • 555-3351, 861-0237
Nature
History and Culture
20.58 km
Skalholt Church

Situated in the lower part of the Biskupstungur valley between the rivers Hvítá and Brúará, Skálholt is one of Iceland's places of special historical interest. For seven centuries it was the scene of the most dramatic events which shaped the political, spiritual and cultural life in Iceland. Its early history is traced back to the 11th century when religious disputes were at their sharpest in Iceland. Within two centuries of the settlement of Iceland, the first bishopric was founded at Skálholt in 1056 for South Iceland, and soon a second at Hólar in 1109 for North Iceland.

The man who chose Skálholt as the site of the first Episcopal see in Iceland was Ísleifur (1006 - 1080), son of Gissur the White. Skálholt had earlier been his patrimonial estate and his grandfather, Teitur Ketilbjarnarson, was the first settler there. According to an old account, Skálholt was at that time "the largest town in Iceland". Ísleifur's father, who was a wealthy aristocrat and a redoubtable political figure as well, played a decisive role in the Christianization of Iceland and the future status of the church. He built the first church in Iceland at Skálholt around the year 1000.

In the 12th century bishop Klængur Þorsteinsson built a great cathedral at Skálholt. It was a sumptuous edifice made of timber shipped from Norway. For centuries Skálholt was the centre of learning and culture in Iceland, a status which lasted up to the Reformation in 1550.

In 1954, a team of archaeologists, while digging up the foundations of the old cathedral, came upon a sarcophagus which was believed to contain the skeleton of Páll Jónsson, one of the most powerful bishops of Skálholt. His sarcophagus, together with a few relics found at the scene, is now on display in an underground vault beneath the new memorial church built during 1956-1963 on the site of the old cathedral. All churches in Scandinavia contributed financially to its construction.

The last Catholic bishop of Iceland, Jón Arason, was executed at Skálholt in 1550, along with his two sons. He had opposed the Reformation imposed upon Iceland by King Christian III of Denmark. Today, a memorial stands at the site of the execution. Arason's Episcopal robes are on display at the National Museum of Iceland in Reykjavík.

Today, Skálholt is visited for the new cathedral, the tomb of bishops, the museum, and the collection of ancient books in the tower.

Nature
13.84 km
The Great Geysir

One of the greatest natural attractions of Iceland and part of the famous "Golden Circle Tour", The Great Geysir, or Stori-Geysir, has been dormant since 1916 when it suddenly ceased to spout. It came to life only once in 1935, and as quickly went back to sleep. Since then its repose has sporadically been disturbed by the dumping of tons of carbolic soap powder into its seething orifice in order to tickle it to spout. It is not exactly known when Geysir was created. It is believed that it came into existence around the end of the 13th century when a series of strong earthquakes, accompanied by a devastating eruption of Mt. Hekla, hit Haukadalur, the geothermal valley where Geysir is located. What is known is that it spouted regularly every third hour or so up to the beginning of the 19th century and thereafter progressively at much longer intervals until it completely stopped in 1916. Whether its silence is eternal or temporary no one knows. When it was alive and shooting, it could thunderously blast a spectacular jet of superheated water and steam into the air as high as 60 to 80 meters according to different sources. Its opening is 18 meters wide and its chamber 20 meters deep. One reason for cessation is believed to be the accumulated rocks and foreign objects thrown into it by thousands of tourists throughout the years. Though definitely damaging, this however could not be the only reason for its dormancy. The Great Geysir was among the most notable geysers in the world, such as those in Yellowstone Park, New Zealand and North Iceland. The English word "geyser" is derived from the Icelandic word "geysir" which means gusher. Though the Great Geysir itself is now more or less inactive, the area surrounding it is geothermically very active with many smaller hot springs. The attraction of the area is now Strokkur (The Churn), another geyser 100 meters south of the Great Geysir, which erupts at regular intervals every 10 minutes or so and its white column of boiling water can reach as high as 30 meters. The whole area is a geothermal park sitting on top of a vast boiling cauldron. Belching sulphurous mud pots of unusual colors, hissing steam vents, hot and cold springs, warm streams, and primitive plants can all be found here. A short distance away to the west stands the small Laugarfjall Mountain with a panoramic view overlooking the Geysir area. King Christian IX of Denmark visited the area in 1874 and by the foot of the mountain are the rocks where he leaned while his hosts tried to impress and amuse him by boiling eggs in the hot springs. The rocks are now called Konungssteinar ("The King's Stones").

Nature
15.49 km
Gullfoss waterfall

Gullfoss is actually two separate waterfalls, the upper one has a drop of 11 metres and the lower one 21 metres. The rock of the river bed was formed during an interglacial period.

Water flows over Gullfoss at an average rate of 109 cubic metres per second. The heaviest floods have recorded a flow of 2000 cubic metres per second. During the summer the flow is 130 cubic metres per second, which would take only 3 seconds to fill this building. People were eager to exploit the power potential of Gullfoss and many plans for hydroelectric developments on the river Hvítá have been proposed.

Nature
6.74 km
Bruarhlod

Bruarhlod (Brúarhlöð) is a narrow gorge in Hvitá River about three kilometers south of the Golden Waterfalls (Gullfoss). Through the centuries the river has formed the rocks in to beautiful pillars and formations. The name of the rocks is Breccias (Hyaloclastite).

Just above Bruarhlod is a bridge over the river, which was built 1959 after the first two bridges washed away, the first one in 1929, and the second one in 1930. When driving over the bridge we can only imagine the forces needed to wash away a bridge in that size.

Hvita River is a popular place for river rafting and to raft through Bruarhlod is adventure that is difficult to describe with words. Travelers should make a note to stop at Bruarhlod, view the magnificent nature and the rock formations.

Others

Samansafnið Museum
Museums
  • Sólheimar
  • 845 Flúðir

Others

Geysir Glíma
Restaurants
  • Geysir, Haukadalur
  • 806 Selfoss
  • 481-3003
Guesthouse Flúðir
Guesthouses
  • Grund
  • 845 Flúðir
  • 565-9196, 896-1286, 896-7394
Heidmork
Farm food direct
  • Heiðmörk, Biskupsstungum
  • 801 Selfoss
  • 486-8875, 892-2965
Gullfosskaffi
Cafés
  • Gullfoss
  • 801 Selfoss
  • 486-6500
Faxi Camping Ground
Camping
  • Biskupstungur
  • 801 Selfoss
  • 774-7440
Café Mika
Restaurants
  • Skólabraut 4
  • 801 Selfoss
  • 486-1110
Minilik Ethiopean Restaurant
Restaurants
  • Gilsbakki
  • 845 Flúðir
  • 846-9798
Útlaginn Kaffihús
Cafés
  • Flúðum
  • 845 Flúðir
  • 486-6425
Engi
Farm food direct
  • Engi, Laugarási
  • 801 Selfoss
  • 486-8913
Slakki Mini Zoo
Mini-Zoo & Open farm
  • Laugarás
  • 801 Selfoss
  • 486-8783, 693-0132, 868-7626
Snússuskáli
Restaurants
  • Golfvöllur Ásatúns
  • 845 Flúðir
  • 486-6601
Aratunga félagsheimili
Diners
  • Aratunga
  • 810 Hveragerði
Við Faxa
Camping
  • Heiði
  • 801 Selfoss
  • 774-7440
Langholtskot
Farm food direct
  • Langholtskot, Hrunamannahreppi
  • 845 Flúðir
  • 894-4933

South Iceland

Towns & Villages

The south of Iceland has several towns and villages, each with its own style, charm and points of interest. Selfoss is the largest town and has a variety of shops, services, many restaurants and fast food places. Most towns are close to the main route, making them accessible and enjoyable.

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Map Höfn Kirkjubæjarklaustur Vík Vestmannaeyjar Hvolsvöllur Flúðir Laugarvatn Reykholt Laugarás Borg Brautarholt Hveragerði Árnes Selfoss Hella Stokkseyri Eyrarbakki Þykkvibær Þórlákshöfn