Efstidalur is a family farm located around 12 kilometres northeast of Laugarvatn and is a working dairy farm with excellent views of Mount Hekla. It has been run by the same family since the late 17th century and their main occupation has been cattle farming, horse breeding and tourism.
Recently, the farm was diversified to a visitor centre, a restaurant and a café which offers amazing ice-cream. The farm’s Barn Loft Restaurant, serves tasty meals from local ingredients, including beef from the farm and trout from the lake. The restaurant, along with their Cowshed Café is located in a renovated barn and features food products made on the farm from their own dairy herd. Local farm products are also for sale.
The fun ice-cream bar at Cowshed Café scoops farm ice cream that is produced from the milk of the cows at the farm. You can actually watch the cows enjoying their hay while you enjoy the ice-cream since the café has large windows looking into the barn. You can also watch the farmers at work, farm and make ice-cream, cheese and the traditional Icelandic skyr. Cowshed Café also makes the waffle cones themselves and the results are delicious.
Efstidalur is a perfect destination for those travelling with children. They can get great ice-cream, watch the cows, even pet the calves and learn about the workings of a traditional Icelandic farm. It offers a unique Icelandic farm experience where you can taste the fresh produce in a wonderful environment. The staff at the farm are more than happy to answer questions and share their knowledge and passion of the animals and farming. The farm is located half-way between Laugarvatn Fontana Geothermal Baths and Gullfoss and Geysir, so it’s the perfect pitch stop when you are travelling the Golden Circle.
Not only is this place on a cool working farm, but you can watch the cows eat through interior glass windows as you eat. Really charming place and one of the best burgers I’ve ever eaten. Of course, we had to get ice cream for dessert–the cinnamon cookie flavor was by far the best. This is definitely worth the stop on your tour of the Golden Circle!