Every corner of the world has its beauty, and for every human being, beauty is something else. For some, it is the mountains, nature, and the harsh air; for others, it will be the sea, for someone else might be the city or extreme sports, but still, there are places in this world that manage to attract everyone’s admiration at the same time – and this is no small thing! Iceland is one of these fairytale-like spots where you can’t believe what you’re seeing is real-life! You don’t have to take our word on it; Keep reading to find out and see for yourself what mesmerizing gems are hidden in Iceland.
1. Admire the whales near Reykjavik
No matter when you arrive in Iceland, the whale show is available. Of course, summer is even more beautiful, and during the warmer months, you will find daily trips, including “watch the whales in the midnight sun.”
The organizers say that the chances of seeing these fabulous mammals are 80-95%, depending on the time of year. As a rule, whales are not shy to swim right next to boats, so the show is total. A suggestion to make this kind of trip is one you’ll really want to consider.
2. Watch a geyser show in Iceland
You get in a car in Reykjavik and, after 50 minutes, you reach the Strokkur geyser, the most famous and popular in all of Iceland. If you want something else, keep in mind that the most active hot springs area is located in the southwestern part of the country, near the river Hvita, and is called the Golden Circle.
Here you will find about 100 geysers but returning to Strokkur, the “guy” throws water at the height of 30 m every few minutes, which turns this natural activity into a real spectacle. In addition, you can visit the recently opened Geyser Center, where you can see exhibitions and informative presentations throughout the year.
3. Enjoy the lights of the North: see the northern lights
Aurora Borealis is one of the most popular attractions in Iceland, more precisely the “chase” after it. It is known that auroras are related to solar winds; they are the result of collisions between gaseous molecules in the Earth’s atmosphere with electromagnetically charged particles from the sun.
This natural spectacle, full of color, can be seen only in a few places on Earth and only in certain periods. You are never guaranteed to see the aurora – the weather must “cooperate” with the visitor, and the sky must be clear. If you’re lucky, go see the Northern Lights in Iceland from late September to early April.
4. Landmannalaugar National Park, Iceland
In the south of Iceland, 180 km from Reykjavik, the Landmannalaugar National Park is an extremely popular tourist destination whose main attraction is simply landscapes. The fabulous landscapes of the mountains, the Hekla volcano, and the related lava fields.
The most practiced activities here are hiking and horseback riding, which you can do from a few hours to days in a row. The park can be visited from June to September; in the other months, the road is closed. There is a mountain resort (Landmannalaugar Hut), which can accommodate up to 75 guests.
5. Glacier Cave, Vatnajökull National Park
Vatnajökull National Park is located in the south of the country and is a stretch of glaciers and spectacular ice caves, which attract many adventurers from around the world. The park is huge and is divided into four areas that revolve around the Vatnajökull glacier.
You will find numerous tourist information points, and those at the Glacier Cave and Hofn are open all year round. The best time to visit the cave is in winter, after the top of the glacier has been washed away by heavy rains. If you go at the right time, the cave is shrouded in spectacular blue color.
6. Mount Kirkjufell and Grundarfjördur, Iceland
About two and a half hours drive from Reykjavik, to the west, is the small fishing village of Grundarfjördur, located on the north coast of the Snaefellsnes peninsula, in the picturesque setting of a fjord surrounded by mountains, with Kirkjufell as a star.
In the surroundings, you will discover waterfalls and other wonders. During the winter, Kirkjufell is a perfect place to come and see the lights of the North, and the Eyrbyggja Center hosts exhibitions related to the maritime history of Grundarfjördur.
7. Dettifoss waterfall, Iceland
Dettifoss is a waterfall in the North of Vatnajökull National Park and is the best example of the brute force of nature. With a width of 100 m and a waterfall of 45 m, it is said that this waterfall is not only the strongest in Iceland but in the whole of Europe. As a rule, it is good to see it from the eastern side of the Jökulsa River, where the road is better.
A short distance from Dettifoss is Selfoss, another smaller waterfall, only 10 meters high, but also very beautiful. Below Dettifoss is Hafragilsfoss, another waterfall that sends its water 27 meters into a steep canyon.
8. Blue Lagoon, Grindavik, Iceland
Just a 40-minute drive from the capital Reykjavik is one of the hottest geothermal spas in the world, a must-see tourist attraction for anyone visiting Iceland, which became famous with its local success in 1976.
At Blue Lagoon, you will discover hot turquoise water outdoors, and you will enjoy the best spa services of your life. You’ll be surprised to be greeted with a glass of sparkling blue wine just as you step into the water (it is only 8 degrees outside in mid-May).
However, the water reaches 37-39 degrees Celsius; therefore, the sensations are unique and beneficial both for the skin and, in general, for health. In addition to the bathroom itself, the place has a lot of facilities, from saunas to relaxation rooms plus, of course, restaurants and shops.
9. Hallgrímskirkja church
Hallgrímskirkja is an important landmark of the capital Reykjavik, and once you see it, you will understand why. It is the tallest and most recognizable building in Iceland.
The architecture was inspired by the Black Waterfall, a basalt formation, one of the natural wonders of the country. You can climb to the 73-meter high tower from where you will have a magnificent view of the city.
Construction of the Hallgrímskirkja church began in 1945 and was completed in 1986, the tower being completed earlier.