Iceland Insider Tips

Blue Lagoon
  • You absolutely must do this! It’s also right by the airport so it’s best to do this right as you arrive into town or on your way out. There are luggage storage options there, it’s totally common, and even shuttle buses from the airport.
  • When you buy a ticket do the base rate, it’s totally fine. There really isn’t a need for a bathrobe and all that kind of stuff.
  • Make reservation before hand as it fills up weeks in advance and you cannot just stop in. Best reservation time is right in the morning when the sun is coming up.
  • Take a super long shower and use all the soap products. When you get into the lagoon make sure you do a silica mask (it’s free). There is also a bar with decent priced cocktails. You buy them using your wristband.
  • At the lagoon they have a café and a restaurant, I’d recommend hanging in the lagoon then spending time in the café and going back into the lagoon for a bit. Make the most of it.
Reykjavik city
  • Airport to Reykjavik city is about a 45min drive.
  • Spend at least 2 or 3 nights in the city. There are tons of bars and shopping and it’s getting more Americanized. There is a bar called the Chuck Norris bar, one called the America Bar and another called the Big Labouski.
  • If you do any shopping make sure to ask for the tax credit receipt. When you get to the airport you turn in your receipts and they give you money back. It’s super easy and takes two min.
  • Shopping is expensive in Reykjavik, but they have a Canada Goose store and tons of lava rock items to buy as souvenirs.
  • Go see the hallgrimskirkja Church early and go all the way up to the tower. The tower closes around 4pm so make sure you are there early. This is the best view of the city.
  • The northern lights museum is fun to learn more about the lights, and since we didn’t get to see them it was a good second. It’s like $15 per person I think.
  • The Viking museum is a wax museum and is supper awesome! Especially if you watch Vikings on History channel. It’s about $22 a person and you get an audio guide that walks you through. At the end of the museum you get to dress up like Vikings and take pictures. There is a giant stuffed bear, super cool.
  • Other things to see are the Harpa and the Sun Voyager. Good to see, but nothing to do there.
Ring Road
  • Also know as road 1 goes all the way around the island.
  • If you have time to drive this I HIGHLY recommend it. In fact, you can rent something called a Happy Camper that is basically a van with a bed and cooking things inside it. Every few miles there is a pull off that has parking space for campers and cars as well as picnic benches. Iceland is totally set up for travelers driving the 1.
  • DO NOT MISS Glacial Lagoon aka Jokulsarlon. It’s amazing. It’s this big glacier that has broken off and floated up on shore, super cool. On the other side of the lagoon is diamond beach with black sand, also stop there.
  • Tons of super cool waterfalls on the way: Skogafoss waterfall, Seljalandsfoss waterfall. At each one get out and walk up the stairs to the top, the view is amazing! Take a gopro or waterproof camera and you can get so close you’re basically in the splash zone.
  • When driving around the 1 use app for offline guide. It has a bunch of waterfalls and different things listed that you can stop on the way and see.
  • The US plane crash is cool, but it’s a bit of a walk off the road.
Golden Circle
  • This is about an  hour north of Reykjavik but definitely worth the drive. I’d recommend spending the night up there as that is the best area to see the northern lights from. Most of the hotels up there are more bed and breakfast type placed and totally in the middle of nowhere.
  • Stop by the great geyser, they typically shoot up about every 2-5min so you won’t miss it. There are about 4-6 different geysers through around there, but only one shoots up regularly.
  • Gullfoss waterfall is amazing and a crazy sight to see! There is a little café you can grab a bite to eat at and of course a gift shop. This is where I got engaged, if you can remember how awesome those pictures were. Definitely go to the lower level viewing deck.
  • The secret lagoon is also on the way to the golden circle. This lagoon is a real hot spring (vs man made like the Blue Lagoon) and in certain areas you have to be careful as the water temp can burn you. The swimmable area is very small and was pretty crowded when we went there. Cost is about $25 and they have a shower and changing area too.

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