Well, it’s been quite a while since I’ve written a blogpost but here we are. I’m very excited to share this one as lots of you have been asking for it. Iceland will always hold a special place in my heart and for those of you that don’t know why…it’s where I got engaged to my best friend 💍 Little did I know why he was so eager to be at Black Sand beach for sunset!! It all makes sense now 😉
Ok, grab a cuppa and let’s get down to business. We flew direct with Play Air ✈️ The flights were a little bit pricey as it was the October midterm but they’re always going to be expensive to Iceland to be honest. Play Air are the same as Ryanair in the sense that you can bring a bag that fits under the seat for free or you can pay for a 10kg suitcase. We always opt for the bag under the seat as it saves a few €€. You’d be surprised what you can fit in a backpack when you put your mind to it 🧠
Our flight on the Wednesday was at 10am and we landed in Iceland at around 1.30pm. From there, we collected our rental car which we had already pre-booked with Blue Car Rental 🚗 They are a car hire company located five mins walk from Keflavík airport which is the international airport we flew into. Reykjavik airport is domestic flights only as far as I know. As it was winter, we chose a 4x4 as it was recommended for that time of year and we also added on a sat nav which definitely made the driving less stressful. Some 4x4s will already have sat navs built into them but again this just depends on what car/4x4 you choose to rent. Our first stop was the Blue Lagoon. This was insane and is a must when you visit Iceland. We had our visit booked for 3pm and we arrived at around 3.20pm I think. Your visit is flexible in such a way that you can arrive anytime between 3pm and 4pm which is great especially if your flight is any bit delayed. There’s different packages you can book so which one you pick is completely up to you. We just booked the basic one which included a complimentary drink of your choice 🥂 Definitely ensure you hair is tied up and stays clear of the water as I heard it can get extremely dry post visit if it gets wet. I shared a few videos of the Blue Lagoon on my Insta so just have a gawk at my Iceland highlight if you haven’t already. There’s been a lot of hype about Iceland in the news recently in relation to earthquakes and volcanos erupting so just ensure the Blue Lagoon is open before you make you way there. We then drove to Reykjavik to check into our Airbnb for the night. I could pretend that we went out for a fancy meal but that’s not our style. Instead, we went all out at Dominos and it was ideal as we were rushing for our Northern Lights tour at 8.30pm 🍕 If renting a car, you could definitely go searching for the lights yourself but you’d really have to do your research in sourcing the best places to find them. We decided it was easier to go with a tour guide and it was definitely worth it. We got very lucky in that we saw the Northern Lights on our first night. They were absolutely class but believe it or not, they are not very visible to the naked eye. It’s your phone that you can see them through which is absolutely bizarre. Ensure night mode is on if you’re taking a picture on an iPhone 📱 We booked our tour on getyourguide.com and you have the option to be picked up at a general location or your hotel/Airbnb which you pay more for of course. That was really it for day one. Jam packed but very exciting.
This was my most favourite day of the trip! Little did I know when I woke up that morning that I would be a fiancé that evening 😋 We were checked out of the Airbnb for 9am and we headed for a stroll around Reykjavik to explore the main sights. Our first stop was Hallgrímskirkja Church ⛪️ There is parking available around it so ideal if you have rented a car. It’s free entry but if you want to climb(take the elevator) to the top, you need to pay a fee. You get a 360 view of Reykjavik from the top so if you like views, then I would definitely recommend. From there, we strolled down towards the main area where Rainbow Street is. Took a few pics(of course), browsed through the shops and that concluded our visit to Reykjavik for now. We had different Airbnbs booked for each night as we didn’t want to have to keep driving back to Reykjavik at the end of each day. Iceland is huge and this made more sense!! We set off to start our tour of the Golden Circle and Skógafoss Waterfall was our first stop(on paper). I had an itinerary prepared of what to see each day but to be honest, as Iceland is so beautiful, you need to factor in time for stops you don’t expect. For example, we were heading towards Skógafoss but came across another stunning waterfall that we HAD to stop at for it’s beauty and I can safely say it was my favourite waterfall of the trip. It was called Seljalandsfoss Waterfall 💦 You have to pay for parking at this one but you can actually walk in behind it. It was incredible! I have made lots of reels of our trip to Iceland so check them out if you haven’t already as you’ll understand what I’m talking about then. We continued our road trip to Skógafoss Waterfall. You don’t need to pay for parking here. There are steps beside the waterfall which allows you to view the waterfall from the top or you can walk towards the waterfall at ground level. Both are absolutely stunning. En route to the glacier, we spotted some Icelandic horses 🐴 I’m not really sure what my fascination with them was but I was really manifesting that I would get close to them and my dream came true(see below)!! We arrived at the glacier. You can walk up(10 minute walk) to see it at a glance for free or you can pay for a tour to actually walk on the glacier 🧊 It’s completely up to you. Glancing at it from a distance was enough for me as I would without a doubt fall over if I was to climb it!! By this stage, it was 4.30pm and it was getting dark. David was getting anxious to go to Black Sand beach for sunset 🌅 To go to Black Sand beach was actually the opposite way to our accommodation for the night but he insisted. I thought he was just being nice as he knows I love sunsets but now I know why he was in a hurry. We made it just in time, went for a romantic walk and low and behold, he popped the question. Our accommodation that night was insane. It was a little bubble dome in the middle of nowhere but we saw the Northern Lights again anddddd we watched the sunrise. The bubble dome was based near Hella and was about 15 mins off route to our stops planned for the next day. Definitely book it asap if you’re planning a trip as it is extremely popular 👌🏻
Waking up in the bubble dome to the sunrise was like a dream and we were blessed to see the Northern Lights once, never mind seeing them twice in 24 hours. I’ve included some pics of the bubble dome below to give you an idea of what it’s like. It’s small but it’s perfect for just one night. We were on the road again for about 1pm. We spent the entire morning ringing family and friends telling them our news as we were very excited to share it with our loved ones ❤️ We drove from Hella to Selfoss and stopped at Plysuu Vagninn for a famous hotdog. It did not disappoint. It’s like a drive thru so you don’t even have to get out of the car. We continued our journey and first on our itinerary for that day was Kerid Crater. It’s basically a massive hole in the ground made from a volcano thousands of years ago 🌋 You can walk around both the top and the bottom but be sure to wear a warm jacket and wooly hat if you are visiting in winter as it is very cold. You also need to pay. I think it was around 3€ so it didn’t break the bank 😉 From there, we drove to Haukadalur Valley to see the squirting geyser. It squirts water from the ground every five minutes or so and is very cool to watch. Again, check out my Instagram highlight for a gawk. Our final stop on the Golden Circle was Gulfoss Waterfall. This was incredible. It was mostly frozen over but just so stunning. As the sun sets earlier in Iceland, we just happened to arrive around sunset and it was so pretty to watch. The Airbnb we booked for this night was a two minute drive from Gulfoss Waterfall but unfortunately, the restaurant there closed at 5pm. We were starving so we actually ended up driving back to Selfoss for a proper dinner. Just be wary of that if you’re planning on doing the same route as us ✨
We had a little lie in which was badly needed after the last three days of adventuring. Although the Airbnb was in the middle of nowhere, the reason we chose it was because we had snowmobiling booked for the next day and the meeting point for the activity was Gulfoss Waterfall which was a two minute drive ❄️ It was absolutely ideal. Snowmobiling can be an expensive activity but after a little bit of research, I found a goodish deal with Mountaineers of Iceland. The price depends on the type of experience you want…whether you want to go fast or if you’re ok going slow with a group. The snowmobiling itself only lasts an hour but it is the coolest experience ever. I would highly highly recommend it. We then made our way back to Reykjavik, had dinner in the Hard Rock Café and met my friend + fiancé who were in Iceland too. They were the first people we got to share our excitement with in person. We had drinks in Petersen Svítan 🍻 It had a very cool vibe about the place. They also mentioned that the Ice Bar and Fly Iceland in Reykjavik were two great experiences also so you could add these to your list also but just book in advance. We made sure to book an Airbnb close to Keflavík Airport for this night as our flight was at silly o’clock, aka 6.45am meaning we had to get up at 4am 💤
Back in Ireland for 10am and off to make the exciting purchase 💍 What a day that was 👫
Overall, I would 100% recommend Iceland. I won’t lie, I thoroughly enjoyed being a passenger princess(thanks David) as I got to take in all the pretty views 👏🏻 If I was to give one piece of advice, it would definitely be to rent a car. Rekyjavik is the main area but the utter beauty of Iceland is outside it to be honest. Everywhere you look is just stunning. Once we had our flights and activities paid for, we didn’t spend much more money as we brought snacks with us in our luggage. We had been told that it was very overpriced so we came prepared with some goodies. We only ate out once a day which was our dinner and it worked out perfectly.
If there’s anything I forgot to mention, just send me a DM and I’ll get back to you asap 💌 Hope this was of some help in planning your trip!
PS. Oh and just a little FYI, if you don’t see the Northern Lights on your first tour, they allow you to go on the trip again for free on the second night so it’s best to book the tour for your first night in Iceland rather than your last 🇮🇸