Iceland was long considered one of the most overpriced but luxurious and beautiful destinations in Europe. Thanks to the recession prices have dropped significantly in the country and it has become increasingly popular with traveller’s looking to visit a truly exciting country; volcanic eruptions permitting of course. With Iceland becoming increasingly popular we decided to look at Iceland’s coolest attractions – and no we’re not just talking about the ice.
The Blue Lagoon and their thermal waters:
Undoubtedly the hottest attraction on our list; Iceland’s volcanic origins have given it some incredible thermal waters and beautiful warm pools surrounded by ice and beautiful landscapes. There are baths and pools throughout the country but the best is undoubtedly the Blue Lagoon with its incredible warm waters amidst beautiful rock formations; it’s an incredible luxurious experience and absolutely beautiful.
One of the most exciting and awe inspiring sight of Iceland is the sea life on offer. There are scores of whale watching tours available and you absolutely can’t miss out on this once in a lifetime opportunity to see Whales. The Blue whales and Orca are undoubtedly the biggest attraction but you can also see Humpbacks, Sperm whales and Pilot whales. You will also have a great chance to see seals and dolphins as well as a huge diversity of bird life.
The aptly named Geysir is Iceland’s most interesting and impressive geyser region and you have to come and see the fountains of warm and often boiling water erupting out of the ground. The geyser Geysir itself is the most impressive and shoots thousands of gallons of water into the air – though you may have to wait a while to see it erupt!
The Westmann islands
The Westmann islands are Iceland’s most active volcanic region and they contain some of the most exciting and beautiful scenery in the region. The islands sit amidst the volcanic activity and are beautiful with steep rocky cliffs and green covered ridges. A tour of the region is exciting and a little scary thanks to the still active volcanic activity but well worth it for the views.
In terms of sheer scale and incomparable beauty Skafatell is very difficult to even compare to. It’s an area that covers almost 1, 600 square kilometres and is Europe’s largest ice cap. The three valley glaciers are simply beautiful and there is nothing quite like standing enjoying the glacial landscape whilst feeling incredibly small and insignificant! The three valleys – Skeidararjokull, Morsarjokull and Skaftafellsjokull are all absolutely stunning and in places it really does look like the ice is pushing apart the mountains. You can also find some of the country’s most beautiful waterfalls in this area; a subject we now turn to.
Iceland’s waterfalls are incredible and abundant thanks to the rocky glacial landscapes. There are more waterfalls here than almost anywhere in the world and you can happily see a different one every hour and still be blown away by their beauty and magnificence. The largest, Glymur, is incredibly impressive but slightly tricky to get to. The most impressive are probably Gullfoss, Dettifoss and Skogafoss which offer you a great spread of incredible water. Gullfoss is a two stage wide waterfall that seems to disappear into an abyss in front of you. Dettifoss is one of the most powerful waterfalls in the world and truly scary with its 45 metres of pounding water. Skogafoss is a more relaxed and pretty affair with a classic look and feel to its tranquil pool. There are plenty of other great waterfalls and we’d recommend visiting as many as possible.
The Glacier Lagoon
One of Iceland’s most famous attractions the Glacier Lagoon is sublime in its beauty. It’s about 4 hours’ drive from Reykjavik and is an incredible lagoon filled with gigantic icebergs with a backdrop of a towering glacier. This is one of the most beautiful sights in Iceland and a boat tour through the bergs is a great way to get up close and personal with these 1, 500 year old blocks of ice!
Finally, of course, no trip to Iceland could be complete without experiencing the country’s capital and really getting a flavour for Icelandic life and culture. Reykjavik is a beautiful city with fantastic architecture and its own unique culture and atmosphere. Top attractions are the city’s museums and the architecture. The Saga Museum, the National Museum and the City Museum offer you a fantastic insight into life in the city past and present while the buildings are themselves stunning. Architecturally the Pearl is one of the best places to get a panoramic view of the city and it also boasts an incredible restaurant. Reykjavik is also an amazing chance to experience Icelandic culture at its finest. The nightclubs are fantastic and the food is interesting and often scary – with fermented shark probably being the strangest of many things you can sample.
Wherever you decide to go in Iceland you can be sure of an amazing holiday with some of the most beautiful scenery the world can offer and a culture that is warm, welcoming and inviting. Before booking a holiday, be sure to get a quote on your travel insurance requirements from a provider such as Travel Insurance Web.