My twin sister and I took a trip to Iceland in April 2017. I loved it. We enjoyed adventure, great meals, met amazing people, and I recommend it as a trip everyone takes!
The trip went pretty smoothly thanks to us knowing several people that had just taken a trip there. The OCD in me polled these groups for their tips and I created an itinerary for our trip.
First things first…
Iceland is inexpensive to get to, but save your money for when you actually get there!
Food, alcohol and tours can get expensive in Iceland, but it’s manageable. The key to managing your Iceland budget goes back to what I mentioned in a previous post of mine, pre-book and plan what you are going to do. Tours also sell out quickly, making this a necessary action before you get there.
Our First Day: Dinner and Snowmobiling
Most flights land in Iceland around 5 AM. Most hotels will charge you for a partial stay, so during this time we handled the rental car business and had breakfast at Sandholt.
Sandholt was recommended by friends and is a super cute family bakery. I was still a rookie traveler at this point, so I was introduced to European pastries and coffee. I came back like “what is Starbucks?”
At 10 AM we were picked up for our snowmobiling tour from our hotel in Reykjavík. This tour includes transportation, all snow gear, and a super jeep ride. The cold is indescribable. It was so windy we got outside and the tour guides approached us. Sadly, because of the wind and weather conditions, they declared it was not safe for us to ride. We did, however, get a chance to take cool pics and got great commentary and an unofficial tour across Langjökull Glacier during the ride.
We were able to swap out this tour for an alternate one during the trip so it was like a 2 for 1 special! The friend who recommended this tour said it was an incredible experience. DO wear extra layers and bring snacks, it’s a six hour tour!
For dinner we went to Messinn. It was crowded and for good reason. They boasted many creative fish dishes. The seafood was one of my favorite parts of Iceland, so fresh! I had the Icelandic Plokkfishkur meal.
We walked back to the hotel and planned on going out that evening, but passed out. I’m not much of a partier, but nightlife in Iceland is exceptionally hard. The activities and adventure are exhausting, on top of trying to adjust to the time difference.
Day Two: Blue Lagoon
I’ll start by saying this, you simply can’t go to Iceland without going to the Blue Lagoon. It is imperative that you book this in advance. We opted for the Premium package and I thought it was money well spent.
In addition to the free drink, we had table reservations to the restaurant, sparkling wine with our meals, a second mask, use of a bathrobe and slippers. Those flip flops were all that, by the way, and served the purpose of being my pedicure flip flops for over a year. RIP to them.
Not only is the Blue Lagoon relaxing, but it’s just as beautiful as the pictures. Get ready for the most IG likes you’ve ever received, lol. Couple the relaxation and priceless pics with the drinks and glowing skin from the masks and you have a travel bucket list item!
After we left the Blue Lagoon we made the long drive back to the city and stopped to take several pictures. The scenery in Iceland is not like anything I’ve ever seen. The Blue Lagoon was so relaxing we simply got back to our hotel, grabbed a bite and called it a night.
Day Three: Golden Circle and Secret Lagoon Excursion
For our final day we did a tour of the Golden Circle and enjoyed a Secret Lagoon. This tour will take up your entire day and lasts 10 hours. On this tour we visited Thingvellir National Park, Geysir, Gulfoss and a Secret Lagoon. It was on this day that I began to understand why Iceland is considered to be one of the most beautiful countries on earth. One of my favorite stops was the “Golden Waterfall,” and having a picture taken with a geysir erupting behind me was priceless. Take a look at the images below that captured this magical day, including one where the driver stopped on the side of the road to allow us to get pictures with Icelandic horses!
Know Before You Go..
I took a look at all of the itineraries, suggestions and tips I received before we left for our trip and here’s what I think you should take note of:
- Rent a car. It’s easy to drive around Iceland, and this way you can purchase a WiFi plan with your car. Just DON’T rent your car from Sixt , scammers!
- Tipping isn’t necessary in Iceland. The tips are already included in pricing.
- If you plan on drinking, buy your liquor from the airport, it’s much cheaper.
- Plan and book your activities in advance.
- Hopefully you like fish because that is your main, best food option available.
Have you been to Iceland? What did you think and what are your recommendations that I may have left out? Let’s chat!