Top 10 Things to do in Iceland

Top 10 Things to Do in Iceland

Although there are a myriad of things to do and see when you come to Iceland, there are certain things that one must do before exiting the country. If you only have a limited time, or want to see the best of the country, check out these sites and activities to help you in your planning.

1. The Golden Circle

The Golden Circle is an amazing expedition consisting of Thingvellir, where the Icelandic parliament Althingi was founded in 930, Gullfoss, the “Golden Falls” waterfall that will literally take your breath away, and the geothermal active valley of Haukadalur, which contains the geysers entitled, Geysir and Strokkur.

2. Blue Lagoon

It is completely unfathomable for one to go to Iceland and not partake in the relaxing mineral-filled waters of the notorious Blue Lagoon. This natural spa located in the center of a lava field with stunningly blue waters will do wonders for your mind, body and soul.

3. The Northern Lights (September – April)

On a clear night against Icelandic dark winter skies, viewing the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis) is a magical and rare experience. To see the swirling light phenomenon in a wild and carefree dance across the sky in dramatic shapes, colors and patterns is something you don’t want to miss.

4. Glacier Lagoon - Jokulsarlon (April - November)

Iceland’s most famous Glacier Lagoon is quite a natural wonder for good reason. To cruise along a magnificent iceberg-filled lagoon with Vatnajokull, Europe’s largest glacier, as the backdrop of your journey, will certainly leave you amazed and utterly speechless.

5. Experience New Year’s Eve in Reykjavik

Imagine thousands of fireworks going off simultaneously across a black wintery still sky. New Year's Eve in Reykjavik, Iceland is like no other. Reykjavik is the only city in the world that doesn’t need a fireworks show because every neighborhood across the city displays their own version. Take a seat at the traditional bonfire, enjoy the magnificent firework show and party until the wee hours of the brand new year.

6. Walk behind Seljalandsfoss

Have you ever walked behind a waterfall? I’m thinking no. While in Iceland take a drive along the south coast of the country and be amazed by the power and majesty of Seljalandsfoss. Feel its force from a different prospective and observe nature’s untouched beauty up close and personal. It’ll be a day where extraordinary memories are made.

7. Whale Watching (May – September)   

Given that there are over 20 different types of whales that can be seen in the waters surrounding Iceland, it is regarded as the perfect setting in which to go whale watching. Don’t forget to dress warm as the Arctic winds are notorious for being extremely chilly.

8. Bathe in a natural hot spring

Experiencing the natural hot springs of Iceland is a rare and unforgettable occurrence. There are numerous natural springs in Iceland, which are popular for bathing, such as the ones at Landmannalaug, Hveravellir, Víti by Askja and Laugafell. To bathe in nature’s hot waters can only occur in a few places around the world. So while in Iceland, take advantage of one of the purest places to engulf yourself in nature.

9. Taste the Local Delicacies

Hákarl, fermented shark meat, a shot of Brennivin, also known as “Black Death,” and Svið, boiled sheep’s head are just a few of the specialized delicacies that are special to Iceland dating back to their Viking days. To truly test your Viking palette, venture into the deep and try one of these tasty Icelandic dishes.

10. Sea swimming  at Nautholsvik

Nautholsvik, Iceland’s man made geothermal beach has become a famous site for battling the Atlantic Ocean at temperatures between 2°C - 8°C degrees.  Although sea swimming in Arctic cold waters may seem insane, it’s actually quite a refreshing experience and has been shown to improve the circulation and have beneficial influence on blood pressure and endurance. However before you make your dramatic plunge; it might be a good idea to talk with some veteran sea swimmers for some additional tips and advice.

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