The stunning land of ice and fire that you must see at least once in your lifetime...
Iceland is growing fast in popularity - and for good reason! The country is simply stunning. From snowy landscapes and sprawling lakes to vast black sand beaches and endless amounts of epic waterfalls, Iceland is the perfect European destination for nature lovers. Read our Iceland travel blogs and start planning an epic trip to Iceland now!
Planning Your Trip To Iceland & Useful Info
There is a lot to know before visiting Iceland. To keep things easy for you, check out our blogs below for the top facts, tips and nuggets of info you need to know:
Iceland Bucket List
Wondering what to see and where to go on your first trip to Iceland?
Here’s a quick look at what your Iceland bucket list could look like...
1. Photograph Gullfoss (and other epic waterfalls)
One of Iceland’s many attractions is its dramatic (and unspoiled) landscape, which includes some pretty spectacular waterfalls. Gullfoss within the Golden Circle is - by far - the most famous but there are lots of other pretty waterfalls along the South Coast that are well worth the drive to go and see including Skógafoss and Seljalandsfoss on the South Coast.
2. Check out Strokkur Geysir
The Geysir Hot Spring Area (also within the Golden Circle) is home to the almighty Strokkur Geysir (aka The Churn). Although there are a number of hot springs located here, it’s Strokkur that most come to see as it spurts steam over 20 metres in the air. Keep an eye out for the bright blue bubble that signals an eruption – it's very cool to see!
3. Hike through Thingvellir National Park
Thingvellir National Park is a vast parkland and UNESCO World Heritage Site that offers picturesque views of lakes, waterfalls, mountains and even an authentic Icelandic church. Fancy some other hikes in Iceland? Check out our full guide here.
4. Relax in hot springs
Hot springs are so synonymous with Iceland as locals have been bathing in them for hundreds of years. There are a number of hot springs dotted across the country, each offering something slightly different to visitors. There is of course the infamous Blue Lagoon, but there are also a number of smaller hot springs that are well worth investigating. Some at the top of our list are the Secret Lagoon, Mývatn Nature Baths and Laugarvatn Fontana. Don't forget to read up on things to know about Iceland's hot springs before visiting!
5. Drive the Golden Circle route
If you haven’t got enough time to see the whole of Iceland or are worried about a mileage limit on your rental car, then there is so much beauty to see just within the Golden Circle including some of Iceland’s most famous highlights. Although you could do it in a day, we’d recommend setting aside two or three days to do it justice.
6. Stroll along black sand beaches
Iceland is an island formed by volcanoes so it’s home to many black sand beaches. The most famous ones include Vik and its ancient rock formations and Sólheimasandur, which is home to a plane crash from the 1970s!
7. Spot whales, dolphins and puffins
In the oceans surrounding Iceland, many different types of whales and dolphins take residence. And in summer, puffins also return home to Iceland in order to nest here. You can easily take tours to see all of this wildlife. Here are some great options from Get Your Guide.
8. Enjoy a quick Reykjavik city break
Reykjavik, Iceland’s capital, is a small city and is perfect for a 24-48 hour city break before you see the rest of what Iceland has to offer. Must-sees in Reykjavik include The Sun Voyager sculpture, Hallgrímskirkja Church, the Harpa concert hall and street art murals.
9. Hunt for the Northern Lights
Iceland is one of the best places in the world for capturing a view of the Northern Lights although it’s not guaranteed you will definitely see this phenomenon. Heading out into the depths of the countryside will certainly help; we’d recommend staying in the Golden Circle to maximize your chances of seeing it. You’ll also need a dark night and minimal cloud cover. Check out this blog for more tips on seeing the Northern Lights in Iceland.
Iceland Travel Itineraries
Now that you have an idea of what you should see and do during your trip, it’s time to create your very own Iceland itinerary. We like to use Google My Maps for our own itineraries and usually plan around two or three sights and activities per day.
This ensures you see your top must-sees during the time you’ve got but still allows time on each day in case something random catches your attention or if you want to add on a couple of bonus activities at the end of the day. For more travel planning tips, take a look at our in-depth guide.
Iceland Travel Blogs & Other Resources You Might Like
We swear by the quality of Lonely Planet’s travel guides:
But if you’re anything like us then you’ll also love getting stuck into fictional books set in Iceland and other top reads to help inspire your trip.
Plus we've got a whole load of Iceland travel blogs that are also well worth a read...
Europe Travel Inspiration
Read our other Europe travel blogs for even more tips and inspiration: