Traveling to Iceland: 6 Stunning Places to Visit
Iceland, literally land of ice, is an island state perched on the northern edge of Europe. The country is situated between Greenland and Norway, geographically closer to the American continent, but historically and culturally linked to Europe. But what to do, what to see and what to visit in Iceland?
1) Horseback Rides
The Icelandic horse is the best-known animal in Iceland. Easily recognized by its small size and strong physique, it is an animal known for its ability to cross rough terrains and perform five gaits (ways of walking). They are also a unique breed that is locally protected and cannot be mixed with other species. There are numerous farms and equestrian societies that offer various horseback riding tours to make your visit to Iceland a memorable and enjoyable one!
2) The Golden Circle
Almost all travellers visiting Iceland wish to see the Golden Circle. Indeed, it is a very touristic area that is worth the detour. You can visit the Gullfoss waterfall and the Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where the Icelandic Parliament was held from the 10th to the 15th centuries.
3) Visit the Mývatn Lake in Northern Iceland
Lake Myvatn is an absolute gem in the north of Iceland. In the region, you can visit the pseudo-craters of Skútustaðagígar, the geothermally active Námaskarð Pass and even Dimmuborgir, which are zones of unique volcanic rock formations with an alluring beauty!
4) The Incredible Geysers in Iceland
This is one of the best known natural sites in the country. If you visit Geysir, you will see the Strokkur geyser, which gushes its sheaves of water up to 20 meters above the ground every 5 to 8 minutes. However, the big geyser only spouts out two or three times a day, although it is the most famous one in the world. The region’s natural beauty is moulded by the earth; fumaroles (the opening in or near volcanoes), mud ponds, hot springs, and other small geysers all around. The soil itself is strikingly colorful with elements such as sulphur (yellow), iron (red) and copper (green).
Situated between Skaftafell and Höfn, Jökulsralón is a real beauty! This lake formed as an outlet of more gigantic glaciers is 200 m deep and emerges as the tongue of the Vatnajökull, which is the largest ice cap in the country. The Jökulsárlón is like a polar landscape with icebergs of black and blue reflections. This site is to be seen, preferably at the end of the day, with low light. You can be sure the view will be picturesque! On the other side, you can also see the black sand beach on which blocks of ice have been stranded.
6) Husavik and Akureyri
Did you know that Iceland is home to some of the largest sea monsters on the planet? For those of you who wish to visit Iceland, don’t miss out on some whale watching. Icelandic cetaceans have impressive dimensions: 25 to 33 meters long and 110 to 190 tons for the blue whale (the largest globally), 25 meters long and 50-80 tons for the fin whale and 25 to 40 tons and 13 to 17 meters long for the humpback whale. The areas where you can observe the whales are mainly in the north of the country and the west, in the fjords. The chances to see a cetacean jumping out of the ocean are more than 90%! For that, go and visit Husavik, Akureyri – the capital of northern Iceland -, Hauganes, Dalvík and Reykjavik (cruise departures).
Did you like our choices for things to do in Iceland? What did you manage to experience from our list? Let us know in the comments below!