Last month, myself and my best friend went on a 5 day trip to Iceland. I haven’t done much travelling this year, as I have to remind myself I am no longer a carefree student, but this 5 day little escape was just perfect.
After we landed we actually went straight to the Blue Lagoon, which was weird but also amazing. The water is beautiful, and it feels so unreal to be walking in what feels like a warm bath, with the wind and drizzle hitting your face. Although we got there in the light, by the time we had been there a little while (and when I actually got my phone out to take a picture) it got dark so quickly, when it felt even more like a dream. We had some fun applying the free face masks and drinking red sparkly wine (tasted AMAZING) and it was a really chill first thing to do. It was a tiny bit stressful finding the coach to get to our hotel afterwards, but nothing too awful!
On the first fulll day we just explored Reykjavik, which made me feel so so festive, they had Christmas lights, trees and stars everywhere and it was so pretty and fun to explore. The shops are really quite expensive, which was probably good as I wasn’t too tempted to buy things I don’t need (what I normally do when I’m in a different country) but sometimes it is just nice to wander round somewhere new without direction. We had the best hot chocolate ever (so actually chocolatey and rich) and also got the famous hot dog from “Bæjarins Beztu Pylsur” (basically a little hot dog stand where you have to queue for a long time with a lot of Chinese tourists).
That night we went on our Northern Lights tour, stood outside the coach for over an hour poised and ready with my tripod, but didn’t see anything. It was kind of a disappointment as I had been so certain we were going to see them, but ours was the only night the tour wasn’t cancelled because of cloud cover, and we still got to see a lot of beautiful stars. And really appreciate how nice it is to be warm again.
The next two days we were there we had two big tours arranged – The Golden Circle Tour, and a Glacier Hike tour, and they were both amazing. The Golden Circle Tour was a very detailed excursion, fitting a lot of places into one day, but travelling through the countryside finally gave images of the country you were expecting, and it was so nice to be able to travel so far, as had we been left to our own devices we may have been a bit limited! My favourite on this day was seeing the ‘Geysirs,’ where a charge of water explodes out into the air. I actually walked all the way back to the biggest one we saw just so I could film it for my boyfriend to see when I got home (dedication there). We also saw some amazing waterfalls (though terrifying as the pathway to see them was icy from all the spray!), and I just love waterfalls so much, and it was so nice to see such beautiful views and landscapes.
Our final day was definitely my favourite though, as we actually hiked up a glacier! We were given metal crampons for our shoes, a helmet and an ice pick, and myself and my friend briefly got terrified about what we had got ourselves into! What if we died?? As soon as we started climbing on the ice though it was so much fun, and my brain couldn’t quite comprehend how I was able to put my foot down on clear untouched ice and not fall? We trekked all the way to the top and then were lucky enough for the rain to clear away (I was damp that entire day) and see the sunset shining over the ice. How many people can say that they’ve seen that?
Other highlights of this trip include: mini cinnamon rolls, Domino’s Pizza round the corner of the hotel, and the multitude of beautiful graffiti-ed walls and buildings. I wanted to take a picture of every single one, but unfortunately I:
A) Didn’t have time, and
B) couldn’t do them justice.
I absolutely loved it here, and I would say 5 days is definitely the right amount of time to visit for (my bank account may have suffered if we stayed any longer!), however I would definitely go back at another time, if only for another chance to see the Northern Lights! I also now really want to go with someone who hasn’t been, so I can see them experience everything, as seeing everything again by yourself might be a bit boring!
Where’s next on your list to go?