We are so excited about sharing this post. We will write about our fabulous road trip in Iceland and give you the best tips to have great time and save some money (because Iceland can be quite expensive).
When we started planning our escape to Iceland we have done a lot of research about main touristic points and theirs locations. The second step was to decide which ones we want to see and which ones we don’t mind to leave behind if we needed to choose.
The third step was to project all interest points on the map and decide where are the best places to sleep. This way we booked 3 different hotels in different parts of ICELAND.
We share our MAP with driving directions and interest points. Hopefully you find it useful.
Next stage – What to pack?
We done some research about what to wear and what to have in Iceland. Thank god we’ve done it.
Things like a very warm jacket, snow boots, waterproof clothes, warm jumpers, gloves and LAYERS are essential in this time of the year.
In general we were really lucky with the weather on our trip. It was sunny most of the time, didn’t rain much and in the second last night there was the biggest snow fall since 1930s. But Icelandic weather is very unpredictable and on our second day there was a big storm. Most roads and schools were closed. Wind was 40-50 m/s strong. You can check road condition anytime online on Vegagerdin.is. It is very useful. You can see the screenshot below from our day, when most roads were closed.
We have planed to see waterfall and plane wreck on this day, but we had to change the plan as we couldn’t drive anywhere until 18:00. We just enjoy our hotel and played in the snow.
At 6PM roads were opened again. It was still quite windy and dangerous but we decide to drive to our next hotel, which was 4 hours away. In that way we could stick to our schedule next day.
One of our favorite days, started from watching the sunrise and driving through incredible landscapes.
The first stop was the Diamond beach.
There is a parking on both sides of the road. You will find it right after the bridge from photo below. But be careful when you drive there, many drivers go off the paths and get stuck in the soft sand.
Walk towards the ocean where the icebergs meet the Atlantic Ocean. In the black sand beach you will find icebergs which have been polished by the ocean and have stranded. They look like diamonds!
The ice-chunks take on so many forms and colours, ranging from transparent, to white, to the most amazing blue colour.
The beach is full of photographers shooting icebergs. The view looks like a piece of art, it is so unique. It is never the same. If you come back next day everything is different.
On the other side of the road there is an iceberg lagoon with the view for the glacier. The area is called Jokulsarlon. It is one of Iceland’s greatest wonders of nature. We said “wow” every 5 sec, when walking around this place. It is one of the most incredible landscape we ever seen.
The lagoon only appeared around 1935, and is growing due to the melting of Icelandic glaciers. It is the lowest point below sea-level in Iceland and the deepest lake in Iceland.
Ice caves and Super Jeeps
We couldn’t go to Iceland and not see ice caves, even with low budget we decided to pay this one in a lifetime experience. We have used company called ICEGUIDE – they were great. To get to caves you will be driving in super jeeps, which are actually modified in Iceland and exported to the whole World.
Ice caves are temporary structures that appear at the edge of glaciers. They look amazingly beautiful inside.
In the same evening we went to Hofn, which is one hour drive to the north. It is an Icelandic fishing town in the southeastern part of the country. The town, offers scenic views of Vatnajökull, because of its location.
We went to Pakkus restaurant which served us catch of the day. Fish was so tasty, couldn’t be better!
Day of long drive to Reykjavik to our next accommodation.
We have planned some stops on the way to make sure it is not just driving. Just after one hour of driving we decided to stop again in the beautiful diamond beach and the glacier lagoon. There were completely different icebergs in the lagoon, what feels unbelievable.
After glacier we drove 45 minutes and we stoped to see the first waterfall from our list. Svartifoss is a waterfall in Skaftafell in Vatnajökull National Park in Iceland, and is one of the most popular sights in the park. It is surrounded by dark lava columns, which gave rise to its name. To get to the waterfall you need to hike 2km.
After another 1.5hour drive we finally arrive to Skógafoss situated on the Skógá River in the south of Iceland at the cliffs of the former coastline. Photo of this waterfall is on the front page of useful guide book – Lonely Planet Iceland (Travel Guide).
Our next stop was in Solheimasandur- plane wreck. We will start our next ICELAND (part2) post from writing about this mysterious place following by Seljalandsfoss, Reykiavik, golden circle and Blue Lagoon.
We hope you enjoyed this post and you will come back for Part 2.