Breiðamerkursandur – Iceland’s Stunning Diamond Beach

A black sand beach littered with huge chunks of glistening ice has become one of the most visited attractions in Iceland, and for good reason, it looks like something out of a fantasy movie.

Known as Breiðamerkursandur in Icelandic, Diamond Beach takes its name from the chunks of pristine ice scattered across the black volcanic sand and glistening like giant, uncut diamonds. It is located next to Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon on the South Coast of Iceland, about six hours away from the country’s capital, Reykjavik. Although it’s not part of the popular Golden Circle Tour, Diamond Beach has become one of the country’s top tourist attractions in recent years, and looking at photos of it, it’s easy to see why.

Photo: Manuel Amersdorfer/Flickr

Diamond Beach is located by the Jökulsárlón glacial lagoon, which is filled with huge pieces of ice that constantly break off from Breiðamerkurjökull, an outlet glacier of Vatnajökull, the largest icecap in Europe. Bits and pieces of these chunks of ice end up on the black sand and create a stunning visual effect.

The size of these “diamonds” can range from palm-size to larger than an average person, as can the color, which ranges from deep blue to bright white, and brilliant turquoise shades in-between.


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Apart from the diamond-like chunks of ice, Diamond Beach is famous for never looking the same on two different days. As the ice melts and new chunks are washed ashore, this place can look completely different from one day to the next.


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In recent years, its famous nickname has made Breiðamerkursandur a very popular place for marriage proposals, as well as a hotspot for Instagram influencers looking to impress their followers.


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If you plan on visiting Diamond Beach during the winter, it’s recommended to spend 2-3 days on the country’s south coast, as the daylight is limited and you want to take the beauty of this place in ideal conditions.

For more jaw-dropping beaches, check out this nameless glass sand beach in Japan, or the stunning popcorn beach of Furteventura.


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