By TravelTom, Founder Travelociraptor.com

One of my favorites things about my stay at the Efstidalur Farmhouse in Iceland was being able to see Icelandic Horses up close.

The breed dates back a thousand years to the first Viking settlers, and over time they have adapted and evolved to the stark Iceland climate. They have double coats and thick flowing manes. Icelandic Horses are shorter in stature than some other breeds, but not small enough to be ponies. Despite their smaller size, the horses are known for their strength and ability to carry heavy loads. And while many breeds of horses have only three gaits, Icelandic Horses have five! The horses are truly a site to behold. Beautiful and elegant creatures, the horses stand firm and pretty in all conditions.

Often, for some reason, the prettiest horses pair up and stand front to back. Perhaps it is to share warmth and to shield each other from the constant wind, or perhaps they just want a friend.

The horses in the below photos are from the field next to the Efstidalur property. I’m not sure if these are the same horses that are available for horse rides at the farm. The fence is electric, so be careful. If you’re lucky like I was a few of the horses may even come up to greet you!

Icelandic Horses Photos

Icelandic Horses

Icelandic Horses

Icelandic Horses have shorter legs than some other breeds of horses.

Icelandic Horses

Icelandic Horses

Are they keeping warm or keeping close?

Icelandic Horses

Icelandic Horses

The horses are known for their thick, flowing manes.

Icelandic Horses

Icelandic Horses

Icelandic Horses

Icelandic Horses come in many colors.