Iceland absolutely lives up to its reputation as a ‘land of fire and ice,’ and it truly is a destination like nowhere else in the world.
Here, you'll encounter thundering waterfalls, expansive lava fields, serene glacial lagoons, and dramatic black sand deserts, all juxtaposed with fertile farmland, charming villages, and a diverse array of birdlife. Iceland is a place that is bound to leave a lasting impression.
You can explore some of the most geographically diverse landscapes on Earth, from towering volcanoes and cascading waterfalls to a rich variety of flora and fauna. The south of Iceland is particularly popular among travelers, who often embark on 'The Golden Circle' route. This route offers breathtaking views of the coastline, picturesque towns, mesmerizing waterfalls, and intriguing thermal areas. As you venture further north, nearing the Arctic Circle, you'll have the opportunity to witness the awe-inspiring phenomenon of the midnight sun.
Akureyri: This lively port town in the northern part of Iceland boasts some of the country's most exquisite timber buildings, all meticulously restored to their original splendor.
Blue Lagoon: Immerse yourself in the soothing aquamarine waters of this geothermal spa, located near Reykjavik. The temperature of the lagoon is maintained at a balmy 40 degrees Celsius year-round. The experience is even more spectacular when you're surrounded by ice and snow. Many believe that the lagoon's mineral-rich content possesses healing qualities.
Gullfoss Waterfall: This majestic waterfall is situated within a canyon, where the river Hvítá cascades down three stepped terraces, creating a truly breathtaking sight. What sets it apart is the "untouched" atmosphere – there are no guard rails to obstruct your view, just the pristine natural surroundings.
Landmannalaugar: Step into a landscape that feels like another planet, with its multicolored mountains, vast lava fields, and the towering Hekla volcano. It's no wonder this area is a magnet for hiking and horse-riding enthusiasts.
Westfjords Region: Explore this remote region by hiking along red sandy shores, sailing through picturesque fjords to deserted villages teeming with wildlife. You can spot puffins on the Latrabjarg cliffs and soak in soothing hot springs under the enchanting Midnight Sun.
When to go / useful information
When to go
Choosing the right time to visit Iceland is a crucial decision to make. In Reykjavik, winter temperatures can drop as low as minus 3 degrees Celsius at night, with daytime highs around 2 degrees Celsius. During this season, many remote attractions may be inaccessible. The period from June to August is the most popular time to visit, as it typically experiences lower rainfall. However, it's important to note that Iceland's weather is highly unpredictable so it's advisable to keep at least four layers of clothing at your disposal at all times. If witnessing the Northern Lights is a top priority, Iceland is an excellent choice. The best time for Northern Lights viewing is from mid-September to mid-April, and these captivating natural displays are best enjoyed in remote locations.
Language: Icelandic; English widely spoken
What makes it special: From its captivating volcanoes and colossal glaciers to the mesmerizing waterfalls, secluded islands, and the striking contrast of red and black sand beaches, this land is a symphony of nature's grandeur. The majestic fjords and towering cliffs, bustling with vibrant puffin colonies, further enhance the awe-inspiring spectacle. Iceland's landscapes are nature on an epic scale, making it an ideal destination for travelers who yearn to expand their horizons.
Weather: From October to April, Iceland experiences brief moments of daylight and long, enchanting nights. Winter enthusiasts can revel in activities such as skiing, snowshoeing, and exploring mesmerizing ice caves. Don't forget the spellbinding Northern Lights, painting the sky with their mystical hues. For those seeking fewer crowds and pleasant weather, May and September are ideal months. During these times, you'll encounter refreshing breezes, clear skies, and the occasional blanket of snow in the interior. The bustling high season unfolds from June to August, attracting visitors to Iceland, particularly in Reykjavík and the southern regions. Experience the magic of endless daylight, partake in numerous festivals, and revel in the abundance of activities that make summer in Iceland truly unforgettable.
Social customs: Family in Iceland is especially important, as the country is so small. Icelandic families are often larger than other Northern European countries. Extended family members usually don’t live together but uncles, aunts, and grandparents often help with childcare. Since most people in Iceland have been there for a very long time, charting family history is a popular hobby for many Icelanders. In Iceland culture and tradition, housework is shared by the whole family. Icelandic youth are taught to be self-sufficient and they are expected to clean their bedroom, change the linen, vacuum-clean or wash the floors, do the laundry, prepare meals and clean the kitchen after general use.