Black sand beaches, spectacular waterfalls, the Northern lights and a whole lot of incredible food…Iceland was a highlight on our life-changing adventure! If you’ve ever considered visiting Iceland or you are lucky enough to have an up-coming holiday to this incredible country, this blog is a must read of all of our favourite experiences!
We arrived at 7 pm on our first night in Reykjavik, it had been a long day of travelling and we were getting pretty hungry! We found our accomodation, dropped off our bags and walked 100 metres to the main square where we set out to find a nice restaurant.
We stumbled upon a beautiful, candlelit restaurant with live piano music called the “Food Cellar”, and it turned out to be the most sensational meal we have had on the entire trip…no, make that ever! At this stage we had absolutely no clue about exchange rates so we did end up spending our entire holiday budget on dinner without realising, but it was worth every cent!
So my first tip if you do travel to Iceland: get familiar with the AUD to Icelandic Krona exchange rate! My second tip: check AFTER you have the best meal of your life!
Glo was another amazing cafe where we had lunch regularly, delicious, fresh, healthy salads, wraps, raw deserts and excellent coffee, it doesn’t get much better than that!
Exploring the small town by foot is a fantastic way to get your bearings, get accustomed to the climate and also encounter some excellent coffee houses, restaurants and hot dog stands…it is the national dish after all! Aside from hot dogs, make sure you try the Skyr, Icelandic yoghurt that is the secret to their good health (and obviously their drop dead gorgeous looks too!)
On our second day we toured the “Golden Cricle”, a popular route that boasts Icelands most iconic and spectacular natural wonders.
The first stop was Þingvellir (Thingvellir) National Park and it is absolutely breathtaking! It hosts the site of the ancient Icelandic Parliament formed around the year 930 AD which literally sits on a Rift Valley between the Eurasian and North American plates, so you can stand on two continents at once! It has incredible views of the mountains and ice caps, rugged land and sweeping valley plains, as well as some gorgeous waterfalls!
Our next stop was Gullfoss Waterfall, the Icelandic equivalent of Niagara Falls! It was absolutely stunning, we walked around the perimeter and just soaked up the view. Another must see!
On our Golden Circle tour we also stopped in at the Geysir Hot Springs and visited the very first church in Iceland, learning about the county’s incredible, intriguing settlement history. A stop of the Golden Circle is an absolute must when Visiting Iceland!
Later that night we were ready for our next tour: the Northern Lights! We were SO lucky to see the lights, as all other tours were cancelled during the week we visited due to the weather! Luckily, we booked for a beautiful clear night and it was all systems go! As you can see below, packing lots of layers and wearing the appropriate clothing is an absolute must:
It turned out to be an absolutely unforgettable night. After a couple of hours waiting, we started to see faint glimpses of green before they really started to put on a show! Tim took a lot of time learning how to best capture the lights and I think he did a spectacular job!
After some downtime in Reykjavik, we took a tour of the Southern Coast which was unlike anything I’ve ever seen before! Our first stop was Skógafoss Waterfall, an amazing sight! We hiked up over 400 steps to overlook the waterfall from above and take some photos, a bonus workout that was well worth the view!
Next up was Reynisfjara Black Beach, which was absolutely jaw dropping! Coming from the Gold Coast, Australia, I’ve grown up on beautiful white sand beaches, so to see a beach with sand at the complete opposite end of the spectrum was unbelievable! This is something I’ll never forget, a fantastic Iceland experience!
If you are looking for a new and exciting holiday destination, Iceland should go right to the top of your list! It’s a week we will remember forever.