Iceland – Heaps of “wow”!
We visited Iceland on a recce in 2013. The brief to ourselves was to develop an itinerary providing a “best of” and some lesser-known parts of the country for our small group tours Iceland. Apart from what we had read and seen in magazines and brochures, we didn’t really know what to expect. We spent just four nights in Reykjavik and other parts of the South. This was however, enough to give us a “flavor” and to meet the necessary business contacts. It was also enough time to tease us. Ever since this brief visit, we’ve craved to come back and see more.
There were many reasons why Iceland quickly became a favourite destination for us both. The scenery blew us away. It’s very green and very pretty. The mountains and waterfalls are easily visible from the road heading South East from the capital. Skogafos is one of the most picturesque examples of waterfalls on the island and a mandatory photo at the bottom is must-have. The black, volcanic sandy beaches with their rocky outposts, provide the best photos opportunities imaginable along the South coast to Vik. Green rolling hills, horses running around in paddocks and pretty coloured houses also make for “pinch me” moments.
While much of the country could be considered quaint and raw, we were very surprised at the level of sophistication Iceland provides – especially Reykjavik. Great restaurants, cool café’s, boutique shops and museums galore, make it a fantastic place to stroll and learn.
The locals are a highly creative bunch too. They love their music, dance, theatre and comedy. The relatively new concert hall, Harper, right on the edge of the Reykjavik’s harbour, is a great place to see the performance culture in action.
They are a tough bunch in Iceland. Given their small population, limited resources and very cold climate, they need to be. We had the chance to learn about their Viking past at the national museum. Interestingly, the first Europeans to document the island were the Greeks about 2,000 years ago but the Swedes and the Norwegians started to inhabit the island in the 9th Century. Iceland is not cheap. In fact, it’s one of the most expensive places you will ever visit. But it’s definitely worth it. There’s “wow” factor all over the island. Why not join us on one of our small group or private tours to Iceland.
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Story and photos by Brett Goulston