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September 2023 Inspiring Itinerary: The Perfect Adventure in Iceland

Iceland Northern Lights

Why Iceland?

Known as “The Land of Fire and Ice,” because of its active volcanos and panoramic glaciers, Iceland is as breathtaking as it is diverse in its landscape of Natural Wonders. Also known as “The Land of the Midnight Sun,” Iceland is one of the few travelable destinations throughout the world where visitors can experience 24 hours of daylight during the month surrounding Summer Solstice. Though the Midnight Sun draws many visitors, the Winter months are still a popular time to visit Iceland because of the appearance of the Northern Lights, one of nature’s most rare and spectacular sights! 

Iceland Volcano

Iceland has been steadily growing in popularity as a vacation destination for well over a decade and it’s not hard to understand why: in addition to the above-mentioned characteristic features, Iceland offers the perfect playground of Natural Wonders, from the 10,000 waterfalls all over the country, to the famous hot springs, to spotting local wildlife such as Puffins and whales, to black sand beaches and dramatic coastline, and that’s not even taking into account the incredible architecture and cuisine scene in cities, such as the capital Reykjavik, which are impressive in their own right!

Iceland offers infinite opportunities for adventure and discovery while reminding visitors just how Magical the wonders of nature can be!

Let’s Go!

Reykjavik

Day 1

Before you even touch down in Iceland, you can start to see what all the fuss is about as you look out your airplane window; the dramatic landscape will be unlike anything you’ve ever seen, especially if you get a glimpse of one of the volcanoes as its erupting (as one is now, which is visible from the air because thankfully it’s not producing ash, and therefore also not disrupting flights, either). 

Upon your arrival, you’ll transfer from the airport to your hotel in the capital city of Reykjavik, where you can freshen up from your travels before heading out to explore the city and enjoy one of the amazing Icelandic restaurants for dinner!

Reykjavik

Day 2

You have all day today to explore Reykjavik, and even though it’s a relatively small capital city, there is certainly plenty to do, and it’s a great place to start your Icelandic Adventure because you can learn all about the history and culture of the country. 

Start by walking along Laugavegur, one of the main streets of the city, where you’ll find plenty of cafes, shops and restaurants. Walking along this street towards the heart of the city will lead you right to the iconic tall white church, Hallgrimskirkja. Although the church is fully operational, it is open to the public, and makes a wonderfully calming stop for a break. In addition, you can take an elevator to the top for panoramic views of the city and surrounding area. 

Harpa Concert Hall

From there, you can continue your walk towards The Settlement Exhibit, where you can explore on your own or take a tour; either way, a visit to The Settlement Exhibit is highly recommended for fascinating Icelandic and Viking history. Depending on how quickly you’re moving through the city, you can also stop at the Harpa Concert Hall to see its famous architecture and stained glass, the National Museum of Iceland for more history, and the National Gallery of Iceland to see Icelandic art. 

Reykjavik

Throughout the day, you’ll be passing lots of great cafes and restaurants for breakfast, lunch and dinner, though Icelandic Street Food is a great option for any meal, depending what time you’re near it! And if you’re looking for something more traditional for dinner, your hotel concierge, or any locals you speak with along the way will be able to recommend the best places!

Borgarnes

Day 3 

After starting out with breakfast at your hotel, you’ll pack up from Reykjavik and begin your adventure throughout the rest of Iceland. Your scenic drive will take you around the picturesque Hvalfjordur Fjord (Whale Fjord), and from there you’ll continue on to the small coastal village of Borgarnes. This historic Viking town features the Settlement Center, where exhibits recreate what life was like in Iceland during its earliest days. While there, you can get a bite to eat at the Settlement Center restaurant or cafe before moving on for the afternoon. 

Iceland waterfalls

Driving inland, you’ll stop at Iceland’s largest hot spring, Deildartunguhver, and then you’ll visit the tiny, artist enclave of Reykholt (which translates to “Smoke Hollow”), before making your way to two of Iceland’s most famous waterfalls: Hraunfossar and Barnafossar. Your last stop of the day will be in Husafell, a beautiful birch forest bordering the highlands, and you’ll spend the night back in Borgarnes.

Snaefellsness Peninsula

Day 4

While the Golden Circle is uber famous (and you’ll get there in a few days), do not underestimate the natural beauty you will behold on your full day tour of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula. You are in for a day of wonder and awe for sure. 

Snaefellsness Peninsula

You’ll start on the northern part of the peninsula, where volcanic craters dot the landscape, including the largest one in the area, Eldborg Crater. As you drive toward the tip of the peninsula, you’ll pass through a number of tiny, traditional fishing villages, as well as Snaefellsjokull National Park, where various geological formations and historical landmarks can be found. Along the way, you’ll stop for a walk on the beach, and also at the base of Snaefellsjokull, the iconic glaciated volcano of the peninsula. Next, you’ll continue along the rugged coast, where the cliffs are breathtaking and the wildlife viewing is spectacular before stopping at the quaint hamlet of Budir. 

Snaefellsness Peninsula

Finally, you’ll head east along the southern edge of the peninsula for more incredible coastal views, this time with possible seal sightings! You’ll stay the night on the south coast of Snaefellsnes, and have unbelievable views of the night sky (be sure to check the forecast for the Northern Lights if you’ll be there in winter). 

Iceland Waterfall

Day 5

Today you’re in for another awe-inspiring tour of the South Shore, full of waterfalls and beaches that are comparable to nowhere else on Earth. After breakfast at your hotel, you’ll head out for one of the most picturesque waterfalls, not just in Iceland, but throughout the world, called Seljalandsfoss. This waterfall is so unique because you can see it from all sides by walking behind it!

Open Air Museum Iceland

After Seljalandsfoss, you’ll visit the Skogar Museum, an open air museum with examples of periodic Icelandic architecture, including a turf-house village and thousands of cultural heritage artifacts. Then, continuing on your drive, you’ll see a few glaciers before stopping at one, where you can actually walk on the Solheimajokull glacier! 

Icelandic Puffins

From the glaciers, you’ll drive to a nature reserve famous for its rugged coastline, and also for its colony of seabirds (Atlantic Puffins can be found here from May to September!).

Iceland Beach

As if that wasn’t magical enough, your next stop will be on the otherworldly beach of Reynisdrangar, where the rock formations look like pillars of a castle. Then, your final stop of the day will be in Vik, a coastal town on the black beach, and you’ll stay the night on the South Shore.

Iceland waterfall

Day 6

Today is your experience of the famous Golden Circle! After breakfast at your hotel, you’ll head out to visit a number of hot springs, including Great Geysir and Strokkur, which shoots out super strong and high jets of water every few minutes. From there, you’ll continue on to Gullfoss Waterfall, one of Iceland’s most famous falls, and a true natural wonder.  

Iceland National Park

After exploring the area a bit, you’ll go to Pingvellir National Park, which was the home of Iceland’s parliament from the tenth to eighteenth centuries. In the Park, you’ll find the picturesque Pingvellir Church, ruins from stone shelters, and the rift valley where two tectonic plates separated. You can also visit the Secret Lagoon, and take a dip into the sulfur-rich water, which comes straight from a nearby Geysir, before returning to Reykjavik for the night. 

Blue Lagoon Iceland

Day 7

Today, you’re headed for another famous Icelandic location: the Blue Lagoon! After breakfast at your hotel, you’ll set out for a visit to this iconic body of water, known for its mineral-richness and healing properties. You can choose to bathe in the Blue Lagoon, or walk along the paths of this majestic location. 

Pro-Tip: Do NOT get your hair wet unless you’ve researched how to pre-treat it to withstand the sulfur-rich water. While sulfur is great for the skin, it can wreak havoc on different hair types and you should do research on how to pre-treat your hair if dunking your head is a priority. The easiest thing to do is put your hair up and call it a day!

Once you’ve finished up at the Blue Lagoon, you’ll head back to Reykjavik for one more night. This evening is a perfect opportunity to celebrate your time in Iceland with reservations at one of the excellent restaurant choices in town!

Reykjavik

Day 8

Inevitably, your vacation in the Land of Fire and Ice must come to an end, and today is the day you’ll head home to share your stories of adventure with family and friends! Of course, if you were in Iceland during the summer and got to experience 24 hours of daylight, you have a perfect excuse to go back in the winter to see the Northern Lights, and visa versa! Enjoy one more breakfast at your hotel before heading out to the airport, where you’ll board your flight and wave goodbye-for-now from the sky!

Iceland Northern Lights

Ready to Plan?

If you are ready to experience the Natural Wonders of “The Land of Fire and Ice,” and plan The Perfect Adventure in Iceland, contact your Love of the Magic Travel Agent today, or email hello@LOTMV.com.  And of course, whether you want to adventure to Iceland, or take your adventuring somewhere totally different, your LOTMV Travel Advisor will work with you to create the unique experience you’re looking for. 

Iceland town

Looking for more of our Inspiring Itinerary series?

You can find links to all of 2022’s Inspiring Itineraries in this Blog: A Year of Inspired Travel: 2022’s Inspiring Itineraries, Month by Month

Just like last year, a new Inspiring Itinerary will come out each month!

So far, we have:

January 2023: The Perfect Themed Vacation, by Land and by Sea

February 2023: The Perfect Romantic Escape to Jamaica

March 2023: The Perfect Foodie-Inspired Vacation to Portugal

April 2023: The Perfect Parisian Vacation: Paris and Disneyland Paris

May 2023: The Perfect California Road Trip

June 2023: The Perfect Alaskan Adventure By Land

July 2023: The Perfect Holiday Vacation to the California Theme Parks

August 2023: The Perfect Halloween-Themed Vacation By Land and By Sea

And don’t forget to check out our Friday Blog Series: Jamie’s Destination “Do”s and “Don’t”s, where our favorite Travel Planning Aficionado shares her wealth of knowledge and experiences about traveling the world! You can find links to all of Jamie’s 2022 Travel Tips at this Blog: Jamie’s 2022 Destination “Do”s and “Don’t”s: A Recap

Ready to plan The Perfect Adventure in Iceland? Contact your Love of the Magic Vacations Travel Advisor today or email hello@LOTMV.com 

The Perfect Adventure in Iceland

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