Iceland is a small island packed with jaw dropping scenery, contrasting landscapes and exquisite wild life.
It is no wonder it has become one of the most sought after travel destinations in recent years.
Here are 10 surpring finds in Iceland that won our hearts and will inspire any traveler to visit one day.
1) Reykjavik – With its fun atmosphere, corky touches, colorful homes and terrific architecture; the capital city of Iceland is a great place to begin exploring the country.
2) Lupine Flowers – While making your way through the island, it’s easy to spot whimsical fields covered in purple. These flowers offer a beautiful and vibrant scene to an already magnificent landscape.
3) Reynisfjara Beach – There are black sand beaches and then there is this beach! This is definitely one of the most breathtaking, remarkable and unique coastal landscapes we have ever encountered. Taking a stroll through this landmark will make you feel like you stepped into another world.
4) Thermal Waters – Iceland offers plenty of opportunities to relax in natural waters heated by geysers. Soaking in warm baths surrounded by exquisite landscapes is truly an unforgettable experience! Some of our favorites include: The Blue Lagoon, Reykjadalur Steam Valley and The Secret Lagoon.
6) Thingvellir National Park – The National Park contains fantastic views, well paved scenic trails, lovely waterfalls and even the opportunity to scuba dive between two continental plates!
7) Glaciers – This is the where the island gets its name from. Truly fascinating to hike in close proximity to Svinafellsjokull Glacier. It’s also so exciting to ride amongst giant chunks of ice in Jokulsarlon Glacier Lake.
8) Waterfalls – If there is something that Iceland has an abundance of, it would be waterfalls! Just driving on mains roads provides you magnificent opportunities to spot them. If you are a waterfall lover – this is the place for you.
9) Geysers – Another common sight in Iceland are steaming geysers. The volcanic activity, which is characteristic to the island, helps create an amazing steam filled scenery all around.
10) Unusual Finds – From Icelandic horses, an inactive volcano crater, homes carved out of rocks and even a plane wreckage; there are many unique treasures one can find while exploring this amazing island.
Here are our suggestions for traveling to Iceland:
- If you can, rent a car and drive the South Rim yourself. That way you can take your time and enjoy the sights by adding a few additional must see spots in between (tours don’t include them and cram in all the main sights into one day).
- Stay overnight for a few days so you can enjoy everything the South Rim has to offer (one day is definitely not enough).
- Fill up your car often, as there are few choices to do so once you take roads that are off the beaten path.
- Use GPS to get around, we found we had service even in unexpected locations.
- Rent a 4×4 vehicle and purchase the additional insurance. We blew out a tire and had a hard time with a few dirt roads in a minivan, so looking back we would have rented a more hardcore vehicle.
- If you have little ones, bring a portable potty. There are not many bathroom options along side roads. We had just finished potty training our little one at the time and it saved us on numerous occasions (you can find one here).
- Credit cards are accepted everywhere so don’t stress about bringing too much cash with you.
- Bring your own towel as there are many hot spring options along the way. If you are traveling in-between hotels, you will not have one at hand.
- Bring warm and waterproof clothing. We visited in the summer, and as you can see in the photos, there were sunny days as well as cold windy ones. We used our gloves, beanies, waterproof boots and thick coats much more than I had anticipated.
- Bring a charger with several outlets for different devices. There are not too many plugs for charging and that way it will allow you to charge all of your electronics overnight ready for the next day (you can find one here).
- Everyone we met spoke English, so don’t stress about the language barrier.
- If you are staying along the way of the South Rim be sure to book your accommodations in advance since there are limited places that sell out quickly.
- Expect food to be pricey, just like most islands.
- When it comes to driving distances, give yourself extra time as you will want to stop every 5 minutes to take a photo of a waterfall.
- If you are interested in taking a boat ride through the glacier lake be sure to book it well in advance.
- Take into consideration what time of the year you are visiting, if there will be light 24 hours a day (summer) or if your day will be short with an early setting of the sun (winter).
There is so much to see and do in this one of a kind country, plan accordingly and be ready to be amazed!
To see more form our time in Iceland go here.
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