Travel tips for Iceland: a beautiful island

Are you a nature lover? Then Iceland is the perfect vacation destination for you! Think of the many waterfalls, glaciers, geysers and volcanoes this country has to offer. Below we will provide travel tips for Iceland! What can you see and do there?

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General Information

With an area of 103,000 km2, Iceland is the second largest island in Europe. The island has the lowest population density in all of Europe. Iceland is a land of fire and ice. You can find extraordinary landscapes with many active volcanoes, glaciers, geysers and a lot of waterfalls. Iceland is the ideal destination to travel around by yourself with a rental car. The ring road runs around the entire island, especially along the coast and past most of the sights. If you want to get off this road, you are required to rent a 4×4 car, which can be quite expensive. Iceland used to be an island where you hardly met anyone else, but nowadays more and more tourists are visiting this island and thus it has become a popular vacation destination. Below we will provide more travel tips for Iceland!

Climate

Not only the landscapes on Iceland are varied, but the weather as well. After just five minutes, the weather can be very different. Scattered around the island are different climates. Most people think that, as the name suggests, it is ice and freezing cold on Iceland. However, the relative warmth in the country is because it is right above the Earth’s hotspots. There are hot springs, geysers and volcanoes here. The average temperature is around 1 degree Celsius in winter and around 12 degrees Celsius in summer. It can also occasionally be – 10 degrees celsius in winter, but no more than 10 degrees celsius. In summer it can even reach 25 degrees celsius, but that will not happen very often. The temperature is mild all year round.

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Language

Icelandic is the official language of Iceland, but fortunately most Icelanders also speak English and Danish. Still, it is always nice to learn a few words from the language when you plan to visit the country. So below is a little dictionary that might come in handy!

HelloHalló
Good eveningGott kvöld
Yes
NoNei
Thank youTakk fyrrir
I do not speak IcelandicÉg tala ekki íslensku
Do you speak English?Talar þú ensku?
One, two, three, four, fiveEinn, Tveir, Þrír, Fjórir, Fimm
I do not understandÉg skil ekki
See you soon!Bless
Where is …?Hvar er …?
Vocabulary


Animals

There are a lot of different animals to admire on Iceland, including the Icelandic horse, the Puffin (a notable seabird), the Icelandic sheep, the snow grouse, the Arctic tern, the Arctic fox and several species of whales and dolphins.

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Is Iceland an expensive country?

Iceland is not cheap, so staying overnight in a hotel can be quite expensive. To save costs, it is best to book early or go to the island outside the high season. In addition to lodging, of course, you also have the cost of food and drink. Eating in a restaurant is delicious, but very pricey. For example, you will pay between 20 and 40 euros for a main course. The prices in the supermarkets on Iceland are not that bad. So should you have a kitchenette, it is best to cook for yourself to save some money. The good news is that most attractions are free and parking your car often costs nothing as well. There are more travel tips for Iceland, so keep reading!

Travel tips for Iceland: highlights

  • Visit the center of Reykjavik
  • The waterfalls of Iceland
  • Visit the Blue Lagoon
  • UNESCO World Heritage Site: Thingvellir National Park
  • The black sand beaches
  • Diamond Beach
  • Vatnajökull National Park
  • The Glacier Lake Jökulsárlón
  • Go on a whale safari
  • Spot the Northern Lights on Iceland
  • Visit the geysers

Visit the center of Reykjavik

Reykjavik is the capital city of Iceland and is definitely worth a visit. In addition, it is the northernmost capital in the world, so you definitely want to be able to tick that off your bucket list. The center is not incredibly large, but there are a lot of things to do in and around this city. You can shop, go out or eat well here. The most famous landmark in this city is the Hallgrímskirkja church. This is a beautiful building 74 meters high. You can even take an elevator to the top to enjoy a beautiful view of the city.

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The waterfalls of Iceland

On Iceland there are an awful lot of waterfalls, both large and small. The best known and most beautiful are on the ring road. This is a well-known route through which you can explore the whole island. We will list some of the waterfalls: the Oxararfoss waterfall, Seljalandsfoss waterfall, Skogafoss waterfall, Svartifoss waterfall, Hengifoss waterfall, Selfoss waterfall, the Morsárfoss and the Dynjandi. In addition, the Dettifoss waterfall is worth mentioning, as it is the most powerful waterfall of Europe.

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Visit the Blue Lagoon

The Blue Lagoon is Iceland’s most famous hotspring and is located near Rekyjavik. This hot spring is a wonderful natural spa. The water is about 40 degrees and is full of minerals. The beautiful blue color makes it a fantastic experience.

UNESCO World Heritage Site: Thingvellir National Park

Iceland lies on the border of two earth’s plates, and in Thingvellir National Park you can see the separation of the tectonic plates. This place has been named a UNESCO World Heritage Site because it is a unique place. The water is clear and therefore it is even possible to snorkel here. The fissure gets bigger every year because the plates are still moving further apart. This must be one of the best travel tips for Iceland.

The black sand beaches

Iceland has several black beaches you can visit. Some of them are: Dyrhólaey Beach, Reynisfjara Black Beach, Vik Black Sand Beach and Diamond Beach. The black beaches are beautiful to see. The sand owes its color to the black volcanic rocks that have been ground by the strong currents into small black sand grains that have washed up on the beach. In addition, Iceland has a lot of volcanoes, and the lava from those volcanoes can flow into the ocean. The cooled lava will wash up as black sand on the beach. You can take beautiful photos here, but beware: you are not allowed to swim here because of the cold and strong currents.

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Diamond Beach

Above we briefly mentioned Diamond Beach, but this black beach is home to an awful lot of chunks of ice. These chunks come from the Vatnajökull glacier and as they end up in a glacial lake and river, they eventually end up on the beach. In the glare of the sun, the magnificent blocks of ice look like diamonds on the beach! It is a beautiful place to behold.

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Vatnajökull National Park

This is the second largest park in Europe with the largest glacier in Europe. Below the glacier are active volcanoes, among other things, as well as mountains and plateaus. You can enjoy hiking and visiting waterfalls in this park. In addition, you could visit the crater lakes here or even take husky rides.

The glacier lake Jökulsárlón

This is the largest and most famous glacial lake on Iceland. It is located on the famous ring road so it cannot be missed. There are beautiful blue ice rocks floating in the water here, and if you are lucky you will also see seals swimming here.

Go on a whale safari

On Iceland, you can also go on excursions to spot whales and dolphins. There is a great chance to see these special animals in the wild. It is an unforgettable experience. Summer is the best period to spot the whales.

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Spot the Northern Lights on Iceland

Most people go to Iceland to admire the northern lights. Charged particles are hurled toward the globe as soon as eruptions occur on the sun. When those particles enter the atmosphere, a certain reaction occurs that manifests itself in the beautiful colors of green, red, purple and blue in the sky. You can see the waves moving and passing by in different shapes. For many people, it is on their bucket list. The northern lights are especially good to see here from October through March.

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Visit the geysers

Worldwide there are not many geysers, but on Iceland you can admire several. It is a hot spring that sprays water and steam into the air. The most famous geyser is Geysir. This geyser sprays water incredibly high. This was the last one of our travel tips for Iceland so far.

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