Iceland seems to be on everyone’s bucketlist at the moment and so it should be. It’s an amazing, beautiful country with a lot to offer. Here’s my ultimate list of things to do in Iceland.
1. Soak in the Blue Lagoon
Ah, yes, who doesn’t want to spend an afternoon soaking in a geothermal plant’s bio-product surrounded by half naked strangers in the middle of a lava field? The Blue Lagoon is famous for being weird and you won’t want to miss out.
3. See the views from Hallgrímskirkja’s church towerBefore long, the views from churches all start to merge together and you think, “this could be any city”. But not Reykjavik. The colourful, toy-like houses are truly unique and worth seeing from up high.
5. Go scuba diving.
There aren’t many places in the world with crystal clear waters and an average outdoor temperature of 11 degrees Celsius. Scuba diving in Iceland is an experience unlike any other and you won’t want to pass up this opportunity.
6. Try some Icelandic cuisine.
And no, this doesn’t mean horse meat, whale meat, sheep meat or skyr. I mean Icelandic herbs! Who says vegans are missing out when it comes to trying food from other cultures? Okay, maybe we do miss out in this case, but who wants to try nasty fermented whale meat anyway?
7. See the views from the PerlanThe views from Hallgrímskirkja may be unique, but the views from the Perlan are traditionally Nordic with church spires, pastel colours and mountains in the background. It’s perfectly Scandinavian and has those Swedish-Norwegian vibes.
8. Visit the Sun VoyagerThe Sun Voyager is a beautiful statue looking out at the sea with a view of mountains in the background. On a clear, cold day, you’ll beat the crowds and get the most stunning pictures.
9. Enroll in Elf School
Iceland is a country with traditional folk tales and beliefs, many of them surrounding elves and trolls. You can enroll in elf school to find out more about these elves and learn lots about Iceland’s culture too.
10. See the Northern Lights
The further north you are, the better your chances of seeing the Northern lights. To do this, you’ll need to get outside of the city for a clearer night. Book with a tour for the best chance of seeing them.
11. Visit the Höfði HouseLocated in Northern Reykjavik, the Höfði House holds historical significance as it is where President Ronald Reagan met Mikhail Gorbatjov to discuss the end of the cold war in 1986.
12. Go whale watchingOff the coast of Iceland is the perfect place to spot Minke and Fin whales. Yes, it may be cold, but seeing whales in their natural environment is so much more rewarding than seeing them imprisoned.
13. See an Ice Cave
The most famous cave is the Vatnajökull glacier, otherwise known as the ‘crystal cave’ is a beautiful naturally sculpted glacier. Unfortunately, these things are not easy to do! They’re located far away from Reykjavik so you may need to get a connecting flight to the cave’s location and you must book in advance. If you’re interested in doing a cave tour, look to see when one is available and then book your flights. Also, make sure you have the money because these things don’t come cheap.
14. Befriend an Icelandic horse
Unlike whales, Icelandic horses are very easy to spot in multiple fields in the countryside outside Reykjavik. Unfortunately, most of the horses in Iceland are breed for shows or for meat but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t show them some love if you see them.
15. See Gullfoss from a helicopterWhy not see one of Iceland’s most impressive waterfalls from above? If you have the money, the golden circle tour can be done via helicopter and the whole experience will be done in a couple of hours, giving you much more time to experience all of the other wonders Iceland has to offer.
16. Visit the world’s only penis museumIf you want an experience like no other, you should visit the world’s only penis museum located in Reykavik. They have over 280 different penile parts belonging to 90+ species including human.
17. Go puffin watching
It’s not just whales, you can go on a puffin watching tour, too! Don’t miss out on seeing these beautiful birds in their natural environment.
18. See a black beach
Iceland is home to many black sand beaches, the most famous being Vik beach in the southern most village in Iceland. It is regarded as one of the most outstanding black sand beaches in the world and it is certainly breathtaking.
19. See Seljalandsfoss
Forget Gulfoss, Seljalandsfoss is one of the world’s most stunning waterfalls and it is located in the south west of Iceland. It falls off the edge of a cliff, over a cave and into a small stream and it is hard to believe it’s not something out of a fairytale.
20. Take a tour around a dormant volcano
Yes, in Iceland you can go inside and take a tour around a volcano. I’m not lying. The dormant volcano, Thrihnukagigur is located in the southern peninsula of Iceland but the tour starts in Reykjavik. For those who love extreme travel, this is another once in a lifetime opportunity you shouldn’t miss out on.