Despite not being your classic kind of holiday destination, Iceland has quickly become one of the most popular places to head for vacation, and with its vast variety of stunning geothermal natural wonders and its Viking heritage, it is easy to understand why. From volcanoes and hot springs, to the funky architecture and nightlife of Reykjavik, Iceland is replete with beauty, fun, history, and culture. If you’re looking to plan a trip to Iceland, here are five things that you won’t want to miss along the way.


1. Gullfoss

One of Iceland’s most visited tourist attractions, Gullfoss is a tiered waterfall that seems to disappear into a hole in the earth, until you approach it and upon closer inspection you will see it is a massive drop of cascading water. The tiered sections of the waterfall flow for some 2.5km in length, making it a great site to explore and view from different perspectives.


2. The Blue Lagoon

The Blue Lagoon is a geothermal hot spring, whose mix of fresh-water, sea-water, and minerals provide visitors with a soothing, relaxing, and some might even say rejuvenating spa experience. The site has been developed to feature some more luxurious accommodations as well, including large changing and shower rooms, and a restaurant and bar for an after-spa meal or drink. Don’t forget to utilize some of the algae rich mud on your skin while in The Blue Lagoon!

3. Thingvellir National Park

For those looking to experience the historical side of Iceland, a visit to Thingvellir National Park will bring them face to face with the site that was home to the famed Viking Parliament, the Althing, for over 800 years. Today, the location is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the vast natural beauty of this dramatic landscape is bound to fill all visitors with a sense of historic wonder.

4. Hallgrímskirkja

This modern church located in Reykjavik is just one of the area’s unique pieces of architecture, and rises incrementally to a height that makes it visible throughout the city. Named for the famed poet and clergyman Hallgrímur Pétursson, it took some 38 years to build, and is said to mimic the basalt lava flows of Iceland’s landscape.


5. The Northern Lights

As if you needed another reason to visit the wonders of Iceland, the island’s countryside is also the perfect place to head to view one of the sky’s most beautiful and mystical events, the flashing and pulsing green and yellow colours of the Aurora Borealis, otherwise known as the Northern Lights.

To experience all that the scenic splendour and fun that Iceland has to offer, be sure to start planning your vacation to this Atlantic island today.

Images by Jennifer Boyer and Moyan Brenn used under the Creative Commons license.

  • September 25, 2015

    Hi Guys,

    Really enjoyed reading this post. I just returned from visiting Iceland last month and your photos made me miss being there.

    If there was a #6 spot I would have added Lake Myvatn – the moon like landscape there is incredible! Did you have a chance to visit?

    Personally, I think the Blue Lagoon is over priced, but it’s still a must see!

    Thanks again for the post and the great photos!


    • September 26, 2015

      We did not unfortunately. We want to go back to see more of the country, especially the north where fewer tourists go. The Blue Lagoon was fun, but I agree it was a little expensive, but still a lot of fun.

  • October 6, 2015

    A perfectly timed post, as I am off to Iceland in mid-December for a long weekend. I’ve just discovered your blog, but have already added it to my reader! a great find!

    Melissa, a former ex-pat in Liverpool
    Melissa recently posted…The Melissa YearMy Profile

    • October 7, 2015

      Hi former expat! Another thing to do in Iceland, which we didn’t mention because our photos are old and grainy, was going to see Icelandic horses…they are small and furry and so stinking cute. We went on a ride, and froze in our saddles, but it was such fun. Enjoy!

  • December 21, 2015

    We are also expats living in London. We have just discovered your blog and came across this post. We will be in Iceland in January and will try some of the places on your list. Did you get to try dog sledding? That is one that is top on our list if we can get booked in.
    islandgirlsinthecity recently posted…The best place to eat in London is…My Profile

    • December 22, 2015

      We would of loved to do dog sledding, but didn’t get a chance. We did ride Icelandic horses, which was fun, even though I’m not a good rider by any means. It is a great island and the landscape is like no place we’ve ever seen. Truly unique and interesting.
      How are you adjusting to London?