Iceland – Golden Circle / Northern Lights Tour

The Golden Circle Tour included four stops, the Thingvellir National Park, Geysir geothermal area, Gullfoss Waterfall and the Kerið Volcanic Crater.

As we were en-route to our first stop of the tour we passed a lot of puffins and ‘mini’ horses along side of the road. Apparently the type of horses that live in Iceland are considered normal horses to them. They do have shorter legs and appear to be more pony-like then the typical sized horse you’d be used to. Also, a first impression of the landscape when we were driving, is that it looks a lot like Mars. There’s a lot of open, vast scenery for miles and miles.

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1st Stop of the tour – The Thingvellir National Park: The Park is located east of the city of Reykjavík. The park sits in a valley that was caused by the separation of 2 tectonic plates. It has a lot of rocky cliffs and narrow paths. There are plenty of spots to snap some great pictures of the mountains, lake and rivers in the park. If you plan on visiting this park, make sure you have a lot of time. It is very long park and you can spend hours walking miles through the park.

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2nd Stop – Geysir geothermal area: This area has multiple active Geysirs and also FYI, smells like rotten eggs, due to the lovely sulfur. Once you get pasted the smell, you can find your way to view the natural wonder of the Geysirs. You’ll be able to tell which one is the most active, when you spot the large group of people standing around it. The hot springs would boil and shoot up about every 10-15 minutes. It was pretty cool seeing how high the water shot up and then settled back down. After we got our fill of the Geysirs and frostbite, we headed indoors for a nice warm lunch. The options of food were pretty slim, but they did have chili and wine and that’s all I needed at that point.

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3rd Stop – Gullfoss Waterfall: The Gullfoss Waterfall is a breathtakingly enormous 2-tier waterfall. It was one of my favorite stops on the tour. This stop was very cold since you get to view this beautiful waterfall from above, you get hit with some of the cold mist. The view makes for a great spot to get a photo-op in with your loved one or friends!

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4th Stop – Kerið Volcanic Crater: My other favorite stop of the tour! The Kerið Volcanic Crater is a large crater filled with a lake. The Crater was said to be created by a volcano that collapsed. The reason why I loved this spot so much is that it was so breath-taking and serene. You start your tour with a view from above the Carter and then walk down CAREFULLY to the lake at the bottom of the Carter. It’s just so peaceful looking at the sun hit the glimmering lake that is surrounded by a mossy/rocky wall.

After the day tour was done, we were brought back to our hotel to later be picked up for the Northern Lights at 9pm. In Iceland the sun doesn’t go down until really late. Being that we visited mid-April the sun didn’t go down completely until 10pm or so. Our tour guides picked us up on a FREEZING cold bus and drove us out to a lake that they were told the Northern Lights have been spotted. Usually the best time of year to capture the Northern Lights is September to mid-April so we were right at the end of the season. We weren’t promised that we would see anything, but we stood outside for an hour or so and finally saw a quick glimpse of the Northern Lights!

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Photo by Romy Victoriano

Since we were exhausted from our full-day tour we didn’t take advantage of the crazy nightlife in Reykjavik. We did see the bars go on until 4-5am on an Easter Sunday though. I guess the Icelandic community really likes to party since it’s so cold there!

Blue Lagoon Experience: Iceland – Blue Lagoon

Iceland Travel: Traveling to Iceland

Facts / Tips about Iceland:

  • Yes, it is COLD! Real cold. So make sure you pack lots of layers!
  • Everything is expensive. Be prepared to spend around $20.00 US on a small breakfast sandwich.
  • The currency in Iceland is ISK (Icelandic króna).
  • The food and drinks are delicious in the city of Reykjavik.
  • It’s as beautiful as everyone says!
  • The Blue Lagoon was man made by accident (read more about it here: https://www.bluelagoon.com/about-us/).
  • Everything is hard to pronounce, but fun to try!

Places to Wine and Dine: 

Helpful Links:

 

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4 thoughts on “Iceland – Golden Circle / Northern Lights Tour

  1. Oh my gosh Iceland is on my bucket list! I have heard it is absolutely stunning! And yes isn’t the smell of sulphur great? haha Thanks for sharing, I will definitely save up my money before going!

    Like

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