If you’re wondering about what to do in Iceland given the desolateness of the country and its skepticism inspiring name, then one of the greatest attractions of Iceland is its raw, unadulterated natural beauty. There are a few museums that you can check out in Reykjavik, but the best of Iceland is outdoors, in the wild. Here we list out our five top, once in a lifetime experiences to savour in Iceland.
Witness the northern lights
The northern lights are a natural phenomena that occur in the sky near the Arctic Circle. They require a dark, clear sky, and burst forth in a dazzling spectacle of green, red and blue every few days. It’s one of the most awe-inspiring sights you will ever see. Make sure you plan a longer trip in Iceland near the autumn or winter months to maximize your chances of seeing this splendid display of lights.
Walk in the depths of Thrihnukagigur volcano
Iceland precariously straddles two active tectonic plates which means that it is home to more than 130 volcanoes, some of which are highly active. You can go on trekking tours to a lot of them and witness the spectacular lava flows first hand. But Thrihnukagigur is even more special as here you can actually enter the magma chambers of this volcano and be humbled by the primordial power of the earth’s pulsing veins. You can find a good tour deal here.
Bathe in a free hot spring
With all those volcanoes, Iceland is a hotbed of geothermal energy, and most of its energy needs are in fact met by this renewable and clean source of energy. Another positive fallout is that Iceland is dotted with natural hot springs all over, and a lot of them are absolutely free.
The easiest one to approach from Reykjavik is Reykjadalur. If you’re doing a Golden Circle Iceland tour, then Hveravellir is only 90 km from Gullfoss, and one of the best free natural hot springs in the country.
Trekking and diving in Thingvellir National Park
This National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage site and once you’re there you will not find yourself asking again about what to do in Iceland. It has some great hiking trails that are easy on the body but offer spectacular views. If you’re a more adventurous sort, then you can also go diving in Silfra, the fissure located in the lake in Thingvellir. Here are some tours.
Drive the perimeter of Iceland
Iceland has great roads and a unique photo opportunity at every turn. A lot of tourists opt to hire a car and drive around Iceland either on the Ring Road or the Golden Circle. The latter is a more popular route and attractions include the Gullfoss waterfall, Geysir, and the already mentioned Thingvellir National Park. Hiring a taxi to take you around is also a relatively affordable option.
More answers to what to do in Iceland