Trip Report: Iceland

Iceland Road Trip Map for 11 day itinerary

Recently, you can’t scroll through Instagram without seeing at least a picture of someone posing under the rainbow at Skogafoss, or sitting on the basalt columns at the black sand beach (I am guilty of both!). These pictures have fueled everyone’s wanderlust and boosted Iceland to the top of everyone’s bucket list – and for good reason. This island of Fire and Ice is known for its volcanoes, glaciers, and surreal landscapes that are best explored by car.  A road trip around the famous Ring road will allow you to see the whole country.  Regardless if you’re a seasoned traveler or a novice, you can’t help but feel in awe of this stunning country that is sparse and yet hauntingly beautiful.  It’s no wonder that Iceland welcomes over 2 million visitors to its shores each year, a number that has tripled in recent years.  Below is a breakdown of our 11 day itinerary and costs: Continue reading


25 Most Instagrammable Places in Iceland

People walking between the rift valley in Thingvellir National Park

Thingvellir National Park

It’s no secret that Iceland is at the top of everyone’s bucket list right now. Waterfalls, hot pools, out-of-this-world jaw dropping landscapes – what’s there not to love, right?  It’s no wonder that this land of Fire and Ice serves as the backdrop for so many Games of Throne scenes.  As an aspiring photographer, I couldn’t help feeling excited for all the Instagram-worthy spots around Iceland.  After taking over EIGHT THOUSAND photos (I know, I have a problem!) I can tell you that it’s almost impossible to take a bad picture – this country is just that photogenic.  Here is a list of the 25 most Instagrammable places in Iceland to get you even more excited, because it’s never too early to start planning. I’ve also included their GPS coordinates so you can find it easily.

To plan your Iceland trip, click here for the complete guide and 11-day itinerary

Woman standing on basalt columns at Reynisfjara black beach

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Chasing Waterfalls in Iceland

People standing in front of Seljalandsfoss

View of Seljalandsfoss from the front

The rugged beauty of Iceland is every photographer’s dream. The extraordinary landscapes that present themselves at every turn will keep you under its spell and make you fall head over heels in love with this country.  This land of Fire and Ice is made up of contrasts and contradictions.  It’s where icy glaciers, moss-covered lava fields, secluded black sand beaches, and explosive geysers come together to make up a country unlike any other.

Click here for the complete road trip itinerary around Iceland. Continue reading

7 Must Visit Hot Pools in Iceland and Where to Find Them

Icy blue water contrast against black lava field at Blue Lagoon

Icy blue water at Blue Lagoon

There are a million reasons to visit Iceland: the dramatic stark landscape, waterfalls, and of course hot pools and hot springs. Exploring the hot pools is a unique experience that combines the beautiful Icelandic scenery with its geothermal activity. Hot pools in Iceland are beloved by both locals and visitors alike.  This traditional pastime of bathing in thermal water is deeply ingrained in local Icelandic culture dating to Viking times.  The pools became a place where people went to socialize after a long day.  Aside from the social aspect, the pools are also said to have health benefits from the mineral rich water.

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Iceland in 11 Days: The Ultimate Road Trip Itinerary and Guide

Black beach at Stokksnes with mountain in background

Stokksnes black beach

Iceland sits at the top of everyone’s bucket list because it’s such a unique place with rugged landscapes that look completely out of this world. A road trip around Iceland’s Ring Road is an adventure you’ll never forget.  A visit to the  Land of Ice and Fire is not complete without soaking in geothermal hot springs, admiring beautiful glaciers, trekking to a secret waterfall, and exploring lava fields.  The wild untamed landscape will make your jaw drop and leave an impression that will not soon fade.

We spent 11 days driving ourselves around the country, including Snæfellsnes Peninsula, and the famous Golden Circle. In that time, we managed to easily see all the major sites.  This comprehensive guide and road trip itinerary will help you plan your OWN trip to make the most of your time in Iceland and experience all the natural beauty this country has to offer. In addition to the trip route and maps, this guide will also give you drive times, accommodations, and restaurant suggestions.  The itinerary is broken out by day, with ideas on where to stop and what to see at each location.

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Photo of the Week: Fog

IMG_4073Blue Lagoon, Iceland

Recently a friend came back from Iceland and it reminded me how much I miss this country .  I missed the savage beauty of the desolate landscape.  I missed the magnificent waterfall. I missed the time we spent at the Blue Lagoon.  We were there when the fog came rolling in over the thermal water creating a nice effect with the sunset.  

Every Monday of each week, I’ll share a photo with you from my adventures around the world and at home. Most of my photos have little or no post processing.  If you would like to see more, please click the ‘Follow’ button.

Photo of the Week: Horseback

IMG_1476Reykjavik, Iceland

A few years ago, there was an episode of the Bachelorette where they went to Iceland.  A few months later, we saw a promotion for a self-guided tour around Iceland inspired by that episode that included horse back riding.  Horseback riding is fun in theory, but when the temperature out is below zero, it can be uncomfortable to say the least. 

We took advantage of the promotion and headed to Iceland for our honeymoon. We were there during the winter time when everything in Iceland is frozen and covered in frost.  If we were smarter, we would have opted out to go sit in a lodge with a hot cocoa, but where’s the fun in that, right?   Instead, we went out horseback riding in the freezing cold. We layered up, and if I remembered correctly I had on at least 5 layers of clothing.  I looked like a giant orange marshmallow on a horse, here is a picture of me on horse back. Continue reading

Photo of the Week: Frozen

IMG_2082Thingvellir, Iceland

On our trip to Iceland, we had a car and drove around the Golden Circle.  One of the stops was at Thingvellir National Park in the south west.  This UNESCO World Heritage Site is home to the world’s longest running Parliament, first congregated in 930 AD.   At that time people gathered here from all over Iceland every year during the Commonwealth period. Now, Thingvellir is still considered to be the main meeting place for Icelanders, where they come together and and celebrate the most significant occasion in the history of the nation.

Aside from it’s historical significance, Thingvellir is also the land of many dramatic landscapes. Walking through the park, you can clearly see the rocky cliff of the largest exposed continental rift between the North American and Eurasian plates.   This picture is of the frozen Oxara river in the heart of Thingvellar.  The tundra landscape was as desolate as it was breathtaking. In late November, winter here is well under way, and we had to cover up in many layers just to stay warm.

Every Monday of each week, I’ll share a photo with you from my adventures around the world and at home.  Most of my photos have little or no post processing.  If you would like to see more, please click the ‘Follow’ button.

Photo of the Week: Rising

IMG_4093Blue Lagoon, Iceland

Today’s picture was posted later than usual because I am working from the West Coast for most of the week.  Now, without further ado, this photo was taking on our honeymoon in Iceland. We were supposed to go to Bora Bora, but somehow ended up there instead. Aside from the frigid cold weather, Iceland is a great place to visit.  At the time we just got our underwater camera, so we thought what better time to test it out then at the Blue Lagoon. The sun was setting low over the horizon and the fog was rolling off the thermal water, creating a nice effect.

Every Monday of each week, I’ll share a photo with you from my adventures around the world and at home. Most of my photos have little or no post processing.  If you would like to see more, please click the ‘Follow’ button.