Iceland Mag

10 Reykjavik

Iceland Mag


Sólheimasandur sand beach famous plane wreck vandalised

By Staff

  • Not cool! The graf was painted earlier this week. The culprit(s) has/have not been found. Photo by Bessi Jónsson

Many visitors have hunted down the remains of a crashed US Navy Douglas Dakota DC 3, which sits abandoned on the black sands of Sólheimasandur. Unfortunately, some visitors feel the urge to ensure that they spoil the experience for others, coming after them.

Earlier this week some visitors decided to “decorate” the plane by tagging it and throwing up a poorly done pink graffiti bomb.

One of the most visited landmarks in the Vík area
The plane wreck, which has quickly become one of the most visited landmarks in the Vik area, has survived a lot through the years. Featured in countless Instagram photos online, several photo essays in foreign media, music videos and TV commercials, the wreck has an eerie beauty about it. A lot of that is due to the desolate and isolated location, and the otherworldly black sand beaches of South Iceland.

A veteran of the Korean and Vietnam wars
The plane crashed on November 21, 1973 on Sólheimasandur west of the village of Vík in Southern Iceland. The crew survived, but the cause of the crash are somewhat unclear as accounts differ as to whether it was due to a mechanical failure, the plane running out of fuel, or a storm.

The plane was one of four Douglas Dakotas based at the US Navy base in Keflavík. The planes, which had previously served in the Korean and Vietnam wars, all met their ends in Iceland, as the three other planes were damaged during take-off.

Leave things like you found them!
The path leading to the crash has recently been marked, making it easier for visitors to locate the site. Unfortunately not all visitors understand that they need to show respect and leave things like they found them, but feel compelled to spoil the experience for anyone following in their footsteps.


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