I just returned from an incredible week-long vacation to Reykjavík, Iceland so I thought I would throw together a quick travel journal to share some of my experiences. I hope this little sampler platter of Iceland inspires you to book a trip. It was truly incredible – breathtaking, awe-inspiring, rejuvenating… i could go on. But I’ll pause.
I’m all about short and sweet lists these days so here are my favorite memories from our unforgettable trip.
Sights: tough to narrow this down, but here are my top three
#3 Blue Lagoon
We spent a full day at this popular attraction and honestly I would have gone back again if we had the time. Soaking in silica-saturated sea water, rejuvenating algae and silica face masks, indulgent dinner and drinks at the onsite restaurant – this day was heavenly. We followed the sage advice of friends who had been to Iceland before us and did the Blue Lagoon on our first day. It was the perfect way to recover from flying and relax into the week.
#2 Golden Circle
To be fair, I was torn on including this one. I loved the sights, but being stuck on a bus with the most stereotypical tourists for a full day was pretty rough. The saving grace was a day jam packed with sights outside of Reykjavík – including exploring the rift between the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates, watching the “original” Geyser erupt every few minutes, learning about greenhouse farming, and taking in the Gullfoss waterfall.
#1 Sólheimajökull Blue Ice Glacier Hike
This was by far my favorite day. I didn’t really know what to expect from a glacier hike, but we had an amazing guide who taught us so much. We learned about Iceland’s fire and ice – volcanoes and glaciers that are so much the heart and soul of the country. We did a full day hike across the Sólheimajökull glacier with full on crampons and ice picks. Our guide even gave us the chance to repel down and climb back up a shear wall of ice. Stopping at the Skógafoss waterfall on the drive home was the cherry on top.
Eats: let’s be honest, I’m already planning dinner as we’re sitting down for lunch
Fish Market – high end spot for mind-blowing dinner
Public House Gastropub – delicious high concept tapas with an asian twist
Perlan – incredible views of Reykjavík and the surrounding vistas in slowly rotating (360 degrees every 2 hours) glass dome high above the city
Lava (Blue Lagoon) – decadent and delicious
Nora Magasin – great place for a quick beer and bite (lamb bigger to die for)
Nightlife: if you’re looking to fall in love in a hopeless place, Reykjavík’s nightlife scene consists of cozy bars where folks drinks and dance till dawn
Kiki Queer Bar (I know… eye roll… But! – amazing music, mixed crowd, dance till 4am when the sun is bright in the sky
Dillon – chill whiskey bar
Kaffibarinn – small bar but fun music
I have so much more advice – so if you’re planning a trip, just shoot me a note and I’ll give you some pointers!