To visit Iceland has long been my dream, and last summer the dream finally came true. We had little time to organize the trip because we never plan our holidays long in advance and honestly, we had problems finding accommodation. But after postponing our trip to August/September, everything was fine. This marks the start of the low season in Iceland, and there is availability again. The road trip along the Ring Road is a perfect start when visiting Iceland for the first time and highly recommended to discover the entire island along the coast.
“Breathtaking & Unforgettable”
Iceland is never boring because nature in Iceland keeps changing from hot springs to icebergs, from lava to stone desert and green landscape. Not to forget the countless breathtaking waterfalls and volcanoes. The journey started directly from the plane, heading south to the Golden Circle, which is a tour of three well-known attractions: the Thingvellir National Park, the geysers in Haukadalur Valley and the Gullfoss waterfall. Come, let’s start round the island.
Gullfoss, also called the Golden Waterfall, is part of the Golden Circle tour and its water is plunging into an enormous canyon with a depth of 70 meters.
The nice restaurant Tryggvaskáli is located in Selfoss. The interior was very cozy and the food delicious.
On our way through the south we drove along this stunning hilly, moss-covered lava landscape.
On the way to Vík í Mýrdal the weather and landscape colours were fantastic.
From the almost empty Ring Road, we turned onto the fascinatingly lonesome Route 26. I love this table mountain on the road to the Hekla volcano.
Still on Route 26. Unfortunately, we couldn’t go any further without a four-wheel drive, but our next trip would definitely take us into the interior of Iceland.
It’s possible to walk around the Seljalandsfoss, and it’s incredibly beautiful to stay behind the waterfall.
A small waterfall right beside the southern Ring Road.
Still along the southern Ring Road to Öraefi.
You can see the massive Vatnajökull foothills, which is the largest glacier in Iceland, already from the Ring Road.
During our short walk to the Vatnajökull, the weather was so sunny and warm that we had to take off our jackets, but when we arrived at the Vatnajökull foothills, it was icy cold.
But it wasn’t as icy as at the Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon. It was so impressive to see all these huge blue-tinted glacier blocks, and it was one of the highlights. I was already charmed by all the glacier lagoon images during our trip planning. This is probably because Greenland is also on my bucket list.
Doesn’t that look picturesque? You can find the little turf church Hofskirkja in Öræfi.
Here we were travelling the east of Iceland. Our next destination was Lake Mývatn, but first there was a stopover in Egilsstaðir, the largest city in the east.
This is the view from the garden of the Lake Hotel in Egilsstaðir. One of the nicest accommodations we had, right on the Lagarfljót Lake.
On our way to the north we passed this impressive rocky desert.
Here we drove around the Lake Mývatn with its countless small islands.
Well, be careful when booking the hotel. No, I’m just kidding! We not only had nice hotels, but some of them were very good. I will list them below for you, along with other favourite places.
In Akureyri, the largest city in the north of Iceland, I didn’t take photos, because the weather was extremely rainy and grey. But I have two restaurant suggestions for you at the end of the post.
Borgarnes is such a romantic small town and it was our last stop before we reached Reykjavik.
Wow, the small Englendingavík restaurant is beautifully situated at the Borgarfjörður and the food was so yummy.
Reykjavík is a beautiful city, and after days in the midst of nature, it was the only chance to stroll around, if you like shopping. The Apotek Café / Bar was very nice (picture bottom right). We also visited the Apotek Restaurant in the evening, and I would highly recommend it.
The Tryggvaskáli is a cozy little restaurant in Selfoss.
Try the Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon bar, if you like to enjoy an aperitif in a nice atmosphere. We couldn’t test the hotel and restaurant, because it was fully booked out.
We had delicious fish in the Humarhöfnin restaurant in Hofn.
The Lake Hotel in Egilsstaðir was my favourite hotel and the restaurant gets a strong recommendation.
The Guesthouse Stadarholl was a big surprise. After some hotel disasters I hadn’t expected something great, but I was wrong. It was definitely one of my favourite places. The small huts were incredibly comfortable and the food was really good.
The Restaurant Englendingavík in Borgarnes was a direct hit.
I hope you enjoyed the round trip and I’ve inspired you to visit Iceland. This island is incredibly beautiful, impressive, breathtaking and it was an unforgettable experience. I would go there again and again. Finally, it should be mentioned how kind the Icelanders are. In case you think about visiting Iceland, don’t wait too long, just do it. You will love it.
Photos © Angela Schiewer