There’s a reason Iceland is a huge travel spot: for lack of a much better word, it’s amazing. One moment you’re driving between snow covered mountains, the next you’re in a field of lava rocks. It’s holds an incredible history, culture, landscape and so much more. My friends Emily, Lauren, Grace and Rebecca (not to mention Betsy who was there at the same time!) just returned home from this incredible place. Can we go back now to the land of fire and ice???
If you’re like us and don’t have more than a few days to spend in Iceland, here’s how we did it. Buckle up, this is a lengthy post!
Friday 3/10 – Off to Reykjavik and Exploration
We flew WOW Air out of Newark Airport on Thursday evening. WOW Air doesn’t have on-board entertainment and food can be purchased on board, so be prepared if you take it! We landed in Keflavík Airport, took a shuttle to pick up our rental car, and before we knew it we were off to Reykjavik. We booked our car ahead of time through NÜ and made sure it had a GPS to make driving around a breeze. It took about 40 minutes to get to the capital city, as we were driving during the morning rush hour. Good news is that they drive on the same side of the road as America. Renting a car was very ideal.
We arrived at our lovely AirBnb in Reykjavik, and as much as we wanted to get right out there and explore, we had to take a quick nap. We woke refreshed and set out to Mosfellsdalur to find Helgufoss Waterfall…..which we never found.
Our running joke of the trip was our inability to find Helgufoss Waterfall. Guys, we hiked for quite some time in deep snow and could not find this waterfall, even after consulting signs and online guides. It definitely does exist, though! For my Game of Thrones fans, we felt very Jon Snow-y and as if we were North of the Wall. It was still an awesome experience, and my How To Get There beanie kept me very warm. So please, if you ever go in search of Helgufoss, be smarter and more careful about it than us!
On our way home, feeling slightly defeated, we stopped by a market to pick up snacks for the day next, when we would be doing the Golden Circle. Later that night, we ate dinner at Fiskfelagid, or Fish Market, and oh. my. word. It was one of the best meals I’ve ever eaten. The freshest, most delicious fish ever.
Saturday 3/11 – Golden Circle and Northern Lights Tour
We started Saturday off around 10 am and headed for the Golden Circle. First stop:Þingvellir National Park.
Followed by Geysir, where we also had a delicious lunch.
And our final stop on the Golden Circle, Gullfoss Waterfall.
We drove home through the most beautiful landscape, showered and had a quick dinner at Babalu Cafe. That evening we did my favorite part of the trip: a Northern Lights tour through Get Your Guide. The real star of that evening was our tour guide Harpa, who sang us an Icelandic lullaby and served us hot chocolate, donuts, and even the traditional fermented shark.
We of course didn’t want to get our hopes up in case the lights didn’t show, but we were extremely lucky. The aurora borealis was dancin’ away; it was truly a once-in-a-lifetime moment.
Sunday 3/12 – Blue Lagoon, Harpa, and Sushi Dinner
Ahhhh the Blue Lagoon. After nearly missing our bus (because we like living life on the edge like that), we arrived at the oasis that is the Blue Lagoon. After showering (mandatory before entering the lagoon) and putting large amounts of conditioner in our hair (the silicia in the water will stiffen it), we were in relaxation heaven floating in toasty water. We also enjoyed lunch in the Lava Restaurant. Definitely book your tickets ahead of time!
Monday 3/13 – Exploring Reykjavik, Hallgrímskirkja and Heading Home
The beginning of the end 🙁 . We ended our Iceland stay by strolling around Reykjavik and going to the top of Hallgrímskirkja church for some incredible views. After purchasing a lopapeysa sweater, it was time to drive back to Keflavík for our flight home.
And that’s how we did it! Iceland is an amazing, unique, out-of-this-world, wild place. We fit so much into our short trip, but there is still so much of Iceland left to explore, like Vik, Diamond Beach, whale watching, and Skógafoss. Which only means it’s time to start planning our next trip!
Thank you Iceland for an unforgettable time! If you have any questions about Iceland travel, feel free to leave a comment. I hope I can help!
Until we meet again xx
Other helpful Iceland links to check out: