Average 2 hour flight
Time difference 0 hour(s)
Average temperature 5°C
Iceland boasts a special combination of epic scenery and a capital city that is both charming and cosmopolitan. It’s well known for stunning natural wonders and dramatic landscapes of volcanoes, bubbling geysers, fast-flowing waterfalls, and impressive glaciers – not to mention the stunning phenomenon of the Northern Lights. There’s also no shortage of magnificent wildlife to spot inhabiting both land and sea.
Most holidays to Iceland start in the capital, Reykjavik; where you’ll find quaint Nordic charm and quirky culture in equal measure. While the art museums, shops, and city sights will provide enough entertainment for a short break; heading to the countryside is the best way to understand the people and culture. It’s incredibly easy with an abundance of excursions and day trips on offer, or you can even hire a car as roads are relatively quiet and easy to navigate.
Something truly special about Iceland is that the geothermal activity is harnessed across the country, so you’ll find ‘hot spots’ everywhere – from downtown Reykjavik to the more isolated Westfjords. Think of these open-air hot tubs more like bars; a place to socialise and get to know some locals for an authentic experience.
The list of things to do in Iceland is wonderfully long so make sure to do your research and get your priorities in order before you go. From hiking across glaciers and wandering the black sand beaches, to historic museums and world-famous DJ events – there’s something for everyone.
Seeing the elusive Northern Lights will no doubt be high on your bucket list, so plan your trip in the winter months of September to April for your best chance to see them. Book a group excursion that will take you to the perfect spot or sail away from Reykjavik on a boat tour and hunt them from the ocean for an unforgettable experience.
Visiting the Blue Lagoon is an absolute must. The cyan water is rich in mineral salts, algae, and fine silica mud that will leave your skin feeling silky smooth. If you’d rather just take a photo of the rolling steam and bright blue-green waters, there’s also an observation path you can walk around.
If seeing unique wildlife is important to you, the small town of Húsavík, on the north coast, has become a firm favourite amongst travellers; known as the whale-watching capital of Iceland. Or venture to the northern peninsula of Hornstrandir to try and catch a glimpse of the snowy-white arctic foxes.
As the winters are dark and cold, you’ll find plenty of traditional hearty food inspired by the ingredients which are most accessible. There’s also an abundance of top-class restaurants offering creative culinary delights where chefs have harnessed and pushed local cuisine.
Try Reykjavik's famous hot-dog or ‘plysur’ made from a blend of beef, lamb, and pork. Order it with everything for a delicious snack complete with crunchy deep-fried onions, raw onions, sweet brown mustard, and a creamy remoulade.
Seafood is found aplenty, from deep-fried cod for delicious fish and chips to mussel stews. If you’re feeling adventurous, snack like the locals and enjoy a salty fish jerky, available at most supermarkets.
Icelanders enjoy delicious lamb thanks to the sheep’s natural diet of plants and glacier water as well as their free-roaming nature. Enjoyed in hearty stews at casual eateries or as roasted sirloin, order a lamb-based meal to enjoy an Icelandic staple.