Following the ring road in Iceland

Thursday, July 20, 2017

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The 1st thing before traveling to Iceland is to get prepared! Prepared to be absolutely amazed by the jaw dropping landscapes that take you from lush green fields to remote lunar scenery, or by the mighty powerful waterfalls!
The 2nd thing you need to know is that it is very expensive! Like 4 euros a loaf of bread kind of expensive! But with wise planning it can be done cheap. Well...cheaper.

A little song to set the Icelandic mood...

In our opinion the best way to visit Iceland is by car, at least that is what we did.
One rented camper van + 2 Of Monsters and Men albums + one amazing country = created our perfect Icelandic adventure.

Tips and tricks:
  • We rented our cute van from here. Iceland is all about camping, so the camper van came fully equipped with sleeping bags, pillows, camping oven, kitchen utensils, camping chairs and table and basically everything you need for a comfortable trip. 
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  • Make sure you get car insurance! We opted for the most expensive one covering almost everything! Because you will not only be driving on paved roads and because there are a lot of risks while driving in Iceland, you want to be covered when it comes to this. Better safe than sorry! 
  • Don’t buy bottled water. It is really expensive and pointless considering that the tap water anywhere in Iceland is perfectly drinkable.
  • The cheapest supermarket is Bonus. Avoid buying food at the gas stations (except the hot dogs) as you can end up paying double the price.
  • Hot dogs are Iceland’s “national food”. It costs around 4 euros and it is one of the cheapest food you can eat in Iceland. Conveniently enough it can be bought at almost every gas station.
  • The Golden Circle is a popular tour from Reykjavik so the 8 visiting places included in the tour will be far more crowded than the rest of Iceland. The further you go the more you get the amazing places all to yourself.
  • We visited Iceland in June because we found it to have a lot of advantages: you get to see the midnight sun (feels quite amazing when it’s broad daylight at 12 AM) and the weather is warmer with less chance of rain. The only downside is that due to the midnight sun you won’t see the aurora borealis, but that can be seen in other places as well ;). Sometimes there is this dusk light at midnight and it makes everything look so dreamy.
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  • Contrary to popular belief the main problem in Iceland is not the cold, but the wind! You can expect some rain as well, although we were very lucky in that matter. However the weather in Iceland is very unpredictable and constantly changing, one minute it is cloudy and the next one the sun comes up . In order to avoid any discomfort and make sure you have a great time no matter the weather it's better to be prepared. The must items of clothing are in my opinion a warm hat, a wind jacket/rain coat and comfy boots. The best way is to have more layers of clothing, take some off when you're warm and the other way around.
  • Also keep in mind that you will get wet a lot! And no...not by the rain, but the waterfalls...oh the waterfalls!, so always have a change of clothes ready in your car. Am I the only one singing TLC's Waterfalls now :D 

The 5 days itinerary
(a.k.a Chasing waterfalls)

Please keep in mind that we had a 5 days itinerary to see all the below and it was pretty hardcore considering that we started each day at 7 AM and ended at about 1 AM, maybe later, thanks to the midnight sun.
Cramming all of the below in less than 5 days will be a bit too much, more days will give more flexibility and rest time. In the end it’s up to you.
Day 1
Continental divide
This was for me the least impressive thing in Iceland. Being full of people did not help it. But don’t worry, it will get way better after this.
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Geyser


Gullfoss waterfall
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Haifoss waterfall
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Seljalandsfoss
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Day 2
Skogafoss
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Dyrholaey
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Vik / Black Beach
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Solheimasandur plane wreck
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Day 3
Moss Covered Lava fields
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Fjaðrárgljúfur
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Svartifoss
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Jökulsárlón - The Glacier Lagoon
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Diamond Beach
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Day 4 
Dettifoss - The big bad waterfall
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Selfoss
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Hverir
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Beware! This place stinks! Literally! It's a geothermal spot emitting sulphuric gas! adventure, camper van, flip flops only, golden circle, iceland, itinerary, ring road, road trip, things to do, travel, wanderlust, waterfalls

Godafoss
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Day 5
Hraunfossar
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Blue Lagoon
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Apparently, this is the most popular attraction in Iceland. Could this be why it is so expensive? We paid 150 euros the entrance for both and we stayed for about 4 hours tops!
The place in indeed nice, but not that much to justify the high prices and huge popularity. There are far better things to see in Iceland than the Blue Lagoon, but I guess you can’t go to Iceland and not visit it, right?
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This is where our road trip adventure ends. On our 6th day, we returned the camper van early in the morning and continued on visiting Reykjavik. There is not much to see or do in it, but it was nice to take a stroll around the city. 1 day in Reykjavik is more than enough to cover it all.
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Iceland turned out to be a great option for a vacation and we could not be more happy with our choice. We took the trip shortly after our Japan experience, when we were purely convinced that we won't love anything as much as Japan, and yet here came Iceland to prove us wrong!
You can't compare them, as they are so different in what they offer, but they were both equally impressive! By far Iceland ranks in our top 3 trips so far! It was truly a unique adventure!
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I'll leave you with one of our trip's anthems and the cute Icelandic horses. Don't you just love their fabulous hairstyles?



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xoxo,
O

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