Visit Iceland: Mini Guide for First Time Travellers

Commonly referred to as the “Land of fire and ice”, the Ring road of Iceland is a picturesque masterpiece and there is a no better visual interpretation of untouched beauty. As a first time traveller to the country abundant in natural phenomena, it’s easy to take on a tourist role but Iceland is an adventure waiting to happen for every avid traveller.

Here is a list to fill up your itineraries as you plan your trip to Iceland.

1. Walking through the Geyser Geothermal Fields

Iceland as a country is a true ode to nature, and as blistering winds may disguise – a particularly grand landscape does in fact, exist. Exploding geysers, pools, and bubbly grounds, the Geyser Geothermal Field is a delight to spend a day exploring. The geothermal field in Haukadalur is a natural phenomenon which should not be missed. An almost six-hour drive via Vestfjarðavegur from the capital of Reykjavik is a driving pleasure with a scenic route.

Geyser Geothermal Field

2. Capturing the Hraunfossar Waterfalls

A true contender for the most alluring waterfall in Iceland, the Hraunfossar waterfalls are a sight to marvel at. An intensely blue run of waterfalls created by streams over a distance of close to 900 meters out of the Hallmundarhraun is spectacular.

With amazing views, the waterfalls run flow into the Hvita River. Two hours away from Reykjavik, a trip to the Hraunfossar Waterfalls can easily be turned into a day trip.

Hraunfossar Waterfalls

3. Soaking in the Blue Lagoon

Forty minutes away from Reykjavik, lies the picturesque blue lagoon in Grindavik. Popular among natives and tourists alike, the geothermal spa does pull crowds. The cloudy waters are naturally heated as it is surrounded by magma filled grounds of volcanic rocks. A spa centre on site offers scrubs, massages and skin treatments. A highly recommended few hours after your flight into Iceland or to wind down your trip.

laguna blu

4. Silfra snorkeling

With the visibility of 120 meters around you, snorkeling in Silfra is a must for first-time travellers. You’ll be able to swim in between the American and Eurasian tectonic plate. Diving or snorkeling between the two plates is really a surreal experience.

Although no marine life, there is different plant types and the magnitude of swimming in the fissure between the continents more than makes up for it. Silfra can be found in the National Park Thingvellir which is also a UNESCO world heritage site.

Silfra snorkelling

5. Exploring National Thingvellir National

The best way to experience Iceland’s wilderness is to visit the National Thingvellir Park. With shorter days, capturing the beauty of Iceland is an exhilarating adventure. Rent a 4×4, watch the sunrise and miss the coaches carrying tourists.

Approximately 40 km’s away from Reykjavik, this is an ideal activity to add to your itinerary. Not only is it a conserved park, it also is historically renowned as the birthplace of oldest existing parliament in the world.

%C3%9Eingvellir

6. Stepping into Glacier Langjokull

Standing as the second largest glacier in Iceland, it is the most prevalent as a layered ice spectacle. Choosing between snowmobile trips, skiing or hiking is available to discover Glacier Langjokull.

The glacier is open to travellers to tour and explore the raw wonder. The view around the glacier is a scenic view of the wilderness is simply astonishing and requires a few moments to appreciate the majestic sights.

Glacier Langjokull

7. Husafell Discovering

The milder weather conditions in Husafell draws large tourist groups due to the forest nestled between lava mountains and the Glacier Langjokull.

Located in Borgarfjordur, it is approximately two to three hours away from the capital Reykjavik making it a pleasurable drive with impressive views.

There are numerous streams and waterfalls around flowing around and over old magma grounds. Close to Hraunfossar and Barnafossar, the entire area is an attraction for locals and tourists alike.

8. Husavik Harbour Touring

Many visit Iceland for the wilderness and whale watching, but rarely for the quaint towns built with communities that live their lives in the cold. The fishing town of Husavik on the edge of Skjalfandi bay is a tourist gem. Sailing around the bay or going out whale watching, you are indeed surrounded by scenery unlike any other destination in the world.

Husavik Harbour Touring 1

Hot chocolate in hand, what could be better than fresh air and the simple remoteness? As a less-travelled route, Iceland is a journey you ought to take. Exploring the wilderness, abandoning typical destinations around the world and crowds of tourists and appreciating the detachment from your usual day to day is bound to make a trip one to remember.

Breathtakingly fascinating, natural charm and a spectacular landscape, Iceland awaits you.

Lived in England since 1998 and travelled the world since 2005, visiting over 100 countries on 5 continents. Writer, blogger, photographer with a passion for adventure and travel, discovering those off beat places not yet on the tourist trail. Marco contributes the very best in independent travel tips and lifestyle articles.

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