Iceland, as the name suggests, immediately conjures up visions of of a country surrounded by massive ice formations and glaciers.Though, because of it’s strategic location near the Arctic Circle this may be true to a great extent, the real beauty of this awe-inspiring country lies in its dramatic natural wonders and a thriving and vibrant culture.
Discovered in the ninth century by the Nordics, Iceland today is the prime destination of visitors from all over the world. Starting from the historic capital of Reykjavik to the deep, and still recently, inaccessible interiors of the Kjolur and Sprengisandur mountains, the untouched beauty of the wilderness of Iceland is there for everyone to behold. From waterfalls, glaciers and volcanoes to fast flowing streams, the scenery on offer here is a world apart. As a unique country with large parts of unspoilt nature, here are just a few of the many reasons to make an Iceland visit as your next resolution for New Year.
Table of Content
Blue Lagoon Geothermal Spa
This, one of a kind geothermal spa, is actually a vast expanse of water which gets its heat from a lava field. The water temperature is carefully maintained at 100 degrees F, and the saltwater gets renewed after every 40 hours. Located amid a landscape of black lava, the spa is just a short thirty minute drive from Reykjavik as well as the international airport.
Visitors come to this spa in large numbers to benefit from a wide range of therapy and massage treatments which are on offer here. For those aspiring for a bit of luxury, one can choose to get pampered with fine drinks and specially prepared meals by opting for an exclusive Blue Lagoon package.
If volcanoes with bubbling lava and jagged rock formations are on your must do list, then a visit to Lake Myvatn is an absolute must. The terrain is so weird and resembles so much the craters of some distant planet, that astronauts from NASA used it to train their Apollo mission crew.
Situated on the northern tip of the country, this unusual place, in spite of the bizarre surroundings has an excellent and thriving wildlife. Importantly, the staggering number of bird species found here, are said to be the largest in the whole of Europe.
The Northern Lights
Forget the cold: Iceland is the top place in the world to view the natural wonder of the northern lights. This amazingly beautiful visual is seen on cold and clear winter nights, only to the lucky few. However, over an extended stay with multiple attempts, the dream can eventually turn into a reality. In any case the hunt to witness this elusive supernatural event is as exciting as the real thing. It is advised to hop on a Northern lights tour to hunt for aurora borealis. You may opt to move around in your adventurous SUV, or choose to unwind in any of the strategically located geothermal pools, while waiting for the lights to appear.
Golden Circle Tour
This is without doubt the must-see attraction of Iceland which can be undertaken in the comfort of a 4×4 jeep combined with an Icelandic horse.
The tour starts at the stunning Thingvellir National Park, the venue of the first parliament of Iceland and currently a world heritage UNESCO site. After traversing the mountain pass of Lyngdals Heidi, one reaches lake Laugarvatn, a beehive of geothermal activity.
The next stop is the most popular waterfall of the country, Gullfoss Falls, followed by a trip up the mountain to the Langjokull glacier and further up to the regularly spitting Strokkur geyser.
Snorkeling in Silfra
Whether you are a certified diver or just a beginner, a snorkeling tour to Silfra,which is just a day tour from Reykjavik, is a lifetime experience not to be missed.
The only place where you can swim between the two continental plates the North American and the Eurasian, in some of the clearest blue waters to be found anywhere else makes for a memorable trip. During the 30 minute dip one gets to see, the Big Crack, Silfra hall,the Cathedral cave and the Silfra lagoon.
Fed by the second largest glacier in Iceland, Langjokull, the natural filtration of Silfra allows for an incredible visibility of up to 150 meters. It is said that this is some of the cleanest and purest water which can be found anywhere in Iceland, which one can easily drink during the trip.
For some of you, who get overwhelmed at making decisions on travel destinations, Iceland holds the key. This is one place where you can enjoy endless hours of sunshine and witness Mother Nature’s greatest gift, apart from the out of the world landscapes. It is only in this land of Fire and Ice where one can experience some of earth’s most magical natural wonders.