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What You Should Know More About Iceland

  • Travel advice:

    • Conduct your research before choosing a stay: One of those factors that should be kept in mind while visiting a holiday destination is to conduct your research regarding that place well. Understand the culture, tradition and how-abouts of the place. Moreover, when it comes to choosing a stay for yourself then it is better advisable to opt for something that is comfortable and convenient to your needs. Choose from a number of resorts, hotels and home-stays and enjoy the culture of Iceland.

    • Enjoy Iceland’s culture for what it is: While the truth about Iceland is that it doesn’t take time for visitors to get used to the culture that prevails in Iceland. In fact, visitors find it extremely easy to understand the culture and work accordingly given how easy-going the place actually is. Enjoy Iceland’s culture for what it truly is.

    • Transportation: The great thing about transportation in Ice land is that one won’t have a difficult time exploring the cities as they are well connected. You need not worry about travelling from places to places. However, hiring a car or bike for your personal need in the place great helps. Don’t miss out on any locations and ensure that you get to see all the primary attractions at your convenience.

    • Carry a map: Iceland is quite expansive in terms of its geographical expansion, however, it is always advisable to carry a map when you’re planning on venturing around the place. The names can get quite confusing and if you lose your way, you may even face a hard time communicating with the locals as there is a high possibility that you may not share the same language with.

    • To tip or not to tip: If you’re staying at a resort or a hotel then it is quite obvious that you won’t be required or expected to end a certain matter with a tip. The same applies to restaurants as well. Most of the times, it is your well-trusted guide that takes care of such situations and if you’re without one then do as you may without feeling obligated.

    • Avoid the crowd: While, Iceland itself is not very crowded, there are thousands of tourists flocking every year. And you already know, the real joy and essence of one place can truly be experienced provided there is lesser amount of distraction. Visitors would quite naturally want to visit Turkey during a time when it’s less crowded. Thus, avoid visiting Iceland during peak periods of March, April, October and November as the hotel and resort bookings get full almost instantly and air tickets get quite expensive too.

    • Drinking laws: Alcohol is quite easily obtainable in this place. The legal drinking age in Iceland is 18 and the night-life is quite sorted as well. Party your heart out while you’re in this place. There are numerous pubs, restaurants and bars that will take care of the wild side in you.

  • Things to do in Iceland:

    • Whale watching at Reykjavik: Watch these gentle creatures from different locations of Iceland. The services available especially at Reykjavik is filled with fun. Don’t miss this rare opportunity to check out these amazing creatures in their natural habitat. The best time to visit is between May and September.

    • Volcanic activities at Geysers: Check out these underground springs and thermal pools emerging as result of the volcanic activities underneath the surface. Always wanted to see a hot stream shooting from the ground? Well, this is the place for you.

    • Adventure activity at Mannalaugar: This is probably one of the most popular tourist destinations in Iceland. Indulge in adventure activities at Mannalaugar such as mountain-climbing, trekking, camping and so on.


  • Recommended Reads for Iceland



    Government website: Visit Iceland

    Books on Iceland: A Summer in Iceland.


  • When is the best time to visit Iceland?

    The best time to visit Iceland depends mainly on what you want to do and see.

    Iceland has a concentrated tourist season in the months of July and August especially because it is summer and one can witness the midnight sun.

    • The summer months makes for an extremely rewarding time for whale watching.
    • If you want to see the northern lights then February, March, September and October are typically the best months.
    • The shoulder season months of May and September are fantastic times to visit due to good weather and competitive hotel prices. If you want to spot Birds, especially puffins then the months of May and June are the best.

  • How to reach Iceland?

    The best way to reach Iceland is by air. The Keflavik International Airport is Iceland’s largest airport and main hub for international transportation. This major terminal receives connecting flights and direct flights from airlines all over the world. Icelandair and Iceland Express are two of the most important airlines operating across Iceland. Several connecting flights ply from the major Indian cities like Delhi and Mumbai to Iceland.

  • Do I need a visa for Iceland? How does one get a Iceland visa?

    Yes, you need a Schengen Visa for Iceland. Iceland comes in the list of 26 Schengen countries which means that you do not need an exclusive visa for Iceland. A schengen visa will do. A Schengen visa gives you an access to all the 26 countries included in the list of Schengen countries along with Iceland. The Embassy of Denmark handles visa applications for Iceland in India. The visa application is to be filled and submitted to The Embassy of Denmark located in New Delhi. The documents required includes a passport with at least 3 months of validity from the date of arrival in India, and at least two blank pages, latest passport size photographs and any government issued Id.

    The tourist visa/short stay visa is valid for a duration of 90 days and takes 16 days to process. The visa fees costs INR 4560 along with INR 1569 VFS service fees.

  • What is the currency of Iceland and where can I get my money exchanged?

    The currency of Iceland is Icelandic króna. You can get your currency exchanged in Iceland at ATMs, Banks, Hotels and Airport desks. There is a Landsbankinn Bank at Keflavik International Airport which gives you a good mid market exchange rate. ATMs and cashpoints can be found easily in cities and towns. You can get cash, cash travellers cheques and exchange notes with your credit and debit cards from Banks. Although visa and Mastercards are accepted almost everywhere, it is a good idea to keep some cash handy if you intend to visit isolated villages and remote areas.

  • Which are the major tourist attractions in Iceland?

    The pristine air and rugged unspoiled landscapes of Iceland, ripe for exploration provides for an unforgettable experience. The major tourist attractions in Iceland are nothing short of incredible. Have a look.

     

    • Skaftafell Ice Cave, Vatnajökull National Park
    • Breidavik Beach, Breidavik
    • Askja caldera, Dyngjufjöll Mountains
    • The pearl observatory (Perlan), Öskjuhlíð hill
    • Gullfoss Waterfall, Reykjavik
    • Seljalandsfoss, South Coast
    • Crater Kerid, Grímsnes area
    • Thingvellir National Park, Reykjavik
    • Hallgrímskirkja, Skolavordustigur, Reykjavik
    • Mount Esja, Kjalarnes

  • What are the things to do in Iceland?

    There is an adventure waiting to happen in Iceland, everyday. Here is a list of top things to do in Iceland:

    • Go for a whale watching excursion, Old Harbor in Reykjavík
    • Spot Northern lights
    • Soak in the geothermal waters of The Blue Lagoon, Grindavik
    • Explore Reykjavík on Icelandic Horses
    • Snorkel between Eurasian and American tectonic plates, Thingvellir National Park
    • Go ice climbing and hiking on Glaciers, Sólheimajökull and Svínafellsjökull glaciers
    • Explore the untouched snowy wilderness of the Thingvellir National Park
    • Go on a caving tour,  Gjábakkahellir Cave near Þingvellir National Park and Leiðarendi Cave in the Bláfjöll area
    • Dine at The Fish Company, Reykjavík
    • Explore Iceland’s diverse landscapes on a Helicopter Tour
  • What is the local food of Iceland? Which are the best places to taste this food?

    The local food of Iceland comprises of a lot of seafood, from fermented sharks Hákarl to Hung and smoked meat Hangikjöt and Súrir hrútspungar - Sour ram's testicles.

     

    The best places to taste Icelandic cuisine are

    • Dill Restaurant, Reykjavík
    • Fiskfelagid Fish Company, Reykjavík
    • Grillmarkaðurinn, Lækjargata, Reykjavík
    • kaffi hornid, Höfn í Hornafirði
    • Lava Restaurant, The Blue Lagoon
    • The Laundromat Café, Reykjavík
    • Sjavargrillid (seafood grill), Skólavörðustígur, Reykjavík
    • Apotek, Austurstræti, Reykjavík
    • Kaffivagninn, Grandagarður, Reykjavík

  • What is the best public transport to commute around Iceland?

    • By Bus: Iceland’s local transport is limited to bus and taxi. Iceland has an extensive network of long distance buses that run to most of the places including Reykjavík,  Akranes, Borgarnes, Hveragerði, Selfoss, Hvalfjarðarsveit, most places on the Ring Road, popular hiking areas, and Snæfellsnes Peninsulas. Therefore, the best public transport to commute around Iceland is a bus. You can book online or get bus passports to travel. The bus passports are offered every summer when the tourist season is at peak for the convenience of the tourists.

     

    • By Taxi: Taxi is another option you can consider while commuting around Iceland. Taxis operate in Reykjavík area and many other larger towns. Although they are metered, they can be pricey and it is always wise to prebook.

     

    • By Car and Motorcycle: The roads are good and the traffic is light which means you can easily get around in a rented car or motorcycle. It is a great deal if you are travelling in a group of 3 or 4 but again the gas is expensive in Iceland.

     

    • By Train: There is no train network in Iceland.

     

    • By Boat: Some ferries operate around Iceland and takes you from Bolungarvík and Ísafjörður to points in Hornstrandir (Westfjords)

  • What is the local language in Iceland and which are the most commonly used greetings? (mention at least 4) (Hello, Thank you, Good morning/night, What is the price of ____?, How far is _____?)

    The local language of Iceland is Icelandic. Here is a list of most commonly used greetings in Icelandic to help you communicate better with the locals.

    • Hello- Halló
    • Thank you- Þakka þér fyrir
    • Good Morning- Góðan daginn
    • Good Night- góða nótt
    • What the price of___? - hvað er verð á
    • How far is___? - hversu langt er

  • Which are the best shopping places in Iceland and what are they famous for?

    Along with all the photographs, and unforgettable memories you would carry along with you, the dainty shopping streets and fleas of Iceland calls for some souvenir shopping.

    • Kirsuberjatréð famous for beautiful art, ceramics and handmade objects.
    • Kraum in the center of Reykjavik fashionable clothes, stationery, art and accessories.
    • Kolaportid Flea Market famous for wool sweaters, fermented fish and old comics.
    • North 66°, city center, famous for outdoor coats and gear.
    • Reykjavik Draper’s union, across the street from Geysir, famous for handmade bags and aprons made of leather and canvas.
    • Aurum famous for scandinavian home decor and jewelry.
    • Geysir, Skólavörðustíg 16, soft wool sweaters and blankets, leather boots, bags, and hats.
    • Kogga, Old Harbour, ceramics and paintings
    • Álafoss, Mosfellsbær famous for hand- or machine-made lopapeysur (Icelandic woollen sweaters).

  • What are the most popular camping sites in Iceland?

    With around 170 campsites, Iceland offers camping opportunities in summer as well as year around. Here is a list of some of the most popular camping sites in Iceland.

    • Skaftafell, Vatnajökull National park
    • Grindavik, southwest coast
    • Þakgíl, north of Vík
    • Siglufirði, northern coast
    • Höfn, East Iceland
    • Húsafell, Borgarfjörður
    • Úlfljótsvatn, Reykjavik
    • Egilsstaðir, center of East Iceland
    • Ásbyrgi, North of Iceland
    • Látrabjarg, Westfjords
    • Hellissandur, Snæfell peninsula

  • What are the famous waterfalls in iceland?

    Europe’s most powerful and awe-inspiring waterfalls can be found in Iceland. Here is a list of famous waterfalls in Iceland.

    • Seljalandsfoss, South Coast of Iceland
    • Glymur Waterfall, Hvalfjordur
    • Svartifoss Waterfall, Skaftafell, Vatnajokull National Park
    • Haifoss Waterfall, South of Iceland
    • Brúarfoss, Brekkuskógur
    • Aldeyjarfoss, North of Iceland
    • Gullfoss Waterfall, Golden Circle Route, Iceland
    • Godafoss Waterfall, Akureyri
    • Dettifoss Waterfall, Vatnajokull National Park
    • Ketubjörg, North Iceland

  • What are the most popular glacier hiking trails in iceland?

    Iceland is famous for its glacier hiking trails. Have a look at some of the most popular glacier hiking trails in Iceland.

    • Glymur waterfall hike, Hvalfjörður
    • Laugavegur and Fimmvörðuháls hike
    • Mt. Esja hike, Reykjavík
    • Hvannadalshnjúkur summit, Vatnajökull glacier
    • Sólheimajökull hike, Reykjavík
    • Svinafellsjökull hike, Skaftafell Nature Reserve
    • Fimmvorduhals hike
    • Landmannalaugar hike
    • Glacier hike on Snæfellsnes peninsula
    • Hornstrandir, Westfjords

  • What are the adventures one can do in Iceland?

    Iceland has some of the most remarkable landscapes on Earth making it a haven for adventure seekers. Here is a list of adventures one can do in Iceland:

    • Dip into the Geothermal waters of the Blue Lagoon
    • Play with puffins on Látrabjarg cliff
    • Go Glacier hiking in Sólheimajökull
    • Watch whales in Húsavík’s snug harbour.
    • Sample the local Hákarl - Shark
    • Witness the ethereal Northern lights
    • Explore Iceland’s highlands on Icelandic horses
    • Bathe in the fuming and sulphurous waters at Askja
    • Visit Blue Diamond Cave in Vatnajökull Glacier in Iceland
    • Take a helicopter ride over the active Bárðarbunga volcano

  • Which are the most iconic buildings in Iceland?

    Along with the undulating and ethereal landscapes, Iceland also has some notable architecture, that many are unaware about. Here is a list of some of the most iconic buildings in Iceland.

    • Harpa concert hall and conference centre, Austurbakki, Reykjavík
    • Kjerag Panoramic Hotel
    • Hallgrímskirkja, Reykjavík
    • Hofsós Swimming Pool, ofsósbraut, Hofsós
    • Höfðatorg Tower 1, Reykjavík
    • Icelandic Institute of National History, Reykjavík
    • Budir Church
    • Snaefells Sofa Visitor Center, Vatnajokull National Park
    • Hof Residence/ Studio Granda, Skagafjörður Fjord
    • Reykjavík Cathedral, Reykjavík

  • What is the best time to experience northern lights in Iceland?

    Witnessing Northern lights or Aurora Borealis is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The best time to experience northern lights in Iceland is in the months of September to mid-April. The northern lights appear on full dark nights so these months are the best time. Also the probability of witnessing northern lights depends upon the duration of your stay. It is expected you stay for at least 7 days in Iceland. Also if the sky is clear and there is no precipitation or clouds like in summers, you can experience northern lights. It is advisable to check out with the meteorological department before heading out to watch the northern lights.

  • What are the best hot springs in Iceland?

    Wading in warm, mineral rich, geothermal waters is the favourite pastime of people in Iceland. Here is a list of best hot springs in Iceland to calm your mind and soothe your body.

    • Blue Lagoon, Reykjanes
    • Nautholsvik geothermal beach, Reykjavik
    • Landbrotalaug, Reykjavik
    • Grjótagjá, Lake Mývatn
    • Leirubakki, Hekla
    • Viti, Askja
    • Landmannalaugar, Fjallabak Nature Reserve
    • Gamla Laugin, Flúðir, Golden Circle area
    • Snorralaug, Reykholt
    • Grettislaug, Varmahlíð

  • Where to go for whale watching in Iceland?

    Iceland provides you unforgettable whale watching experiences all year round. Take a look at the places you can go whale watching in Iceland.

    • Daivik Village, North Iceland
    • Húsavík Island
    • Reykjavik marina
    • The Golden Circle
    • Grimsey Island
    • Skjálfandi and Eyjafjörður bays
    • Old Harbor in Reykjavík

  • Which are the most famous volcanoes in Iceland?

    Iceland is home to over 30 active volcanoes making it the most volcanic places in the World. Here is a list of some of the most famous volcanoes in Iceland.

    • Eyjafjallajökul, Suðurland
    • Katla, beneath the Myrdalsjökull icecap
    • Hengill, south of Þingvellir
    • Hekla, south of Iceland
    • Eldfell, Heimaey island, Vestmannaeyjar
    • Snæfellsjökull, Western Iceland
    • Grímsvötn, South-East Iceland
    • Askja, Dyngjufjöll mountains
    • Vatnafjöll, Southeast of Hekla
    • Esjufjöll, SE part of the Vatnajökull icecap
    • Hverfjall, northern Iceland
    • Theistareykjarbunga, northeastern Iceland
    • Torfajökull, north of Mýrdalsjökull and south of Þórisvatn Lake
    • Eldgjá, South of Iceland
    • Herðubreið, north-east Iceland

  • What are the best beaches to visit in Iceland?

    There is certainly no shortage of beautiful beaches in Iceland but some are simply more beautiful and we couldn’t help but list the best beaches to visit in Iceland.

     

    • Reynisfjara Beach near Vik (South Iceland)
    • Budir Beach (West Iceland)
    • Kirkjubol Beach (West Iceland)
    • Nautholsvik Beach in Reykjavik (Greater Reykjavik Area)
    • Álftanes Beach (Greater Reykjavik Area)
    • DJúpalónssandur, Snæfellsnes Peninsula
    • Grótta, Seltjarnarnes Peninsula
    • Sandvík, Reykjanes Peninsula
    • Breiðavík, Westfjords, Iceland
    • Sandvík, Reykjanes Peninsula

  • Which are the most famous ice caves to visit in Iceland?

    The ice caves of Iceland are truly mesmerising and there are many ice cave tours you can go about exploring. Here is a list of some of the most famous ice caves to visit in Iceland.

    • Crystal Cave in Vatnajökull Glacier in Iceland
    • Northern Lights Ice Cave
    • Blue Diamond Cave in Vatnajökull Glacier in Iceland
    • Glacier Cave by Katla Glacier in Iceland
    • The Waterfall Cave in Vatnajökull Glacier in Iceland
    • Svínafellsjökull Ice Cave, Skaftafell National Park
    • Lofthellir Ice cave
    • Breiðamerkurjökul ice cave, near Vatnajökull
    • Eyjafjallajokull ice cave
    • Kverkfjoll ice caves, north east highlands of Vatnajökull

  • Here are the best tips Thrillophilia has to offer for your trip to Iceland

  • The weather of Iceland is truly volatile, a sunny day can quickly turn to a cold snowy day, get a forecast at the Icelandic Met Office before heading out to any alien or remote place.

 

  • The locals are more aware with the changing weather of the Icelandic landscapes. It is advisable to hire a proper hiking tour operator and pack serious gear, and warm dry clothes. Dress smart and warm, after all no one wants to get stuck in the middle of a remote place without proper gear to keep them safe and warm.

 

  • Iceland is expensive compared to other European countries, probably due to its location. Make your hotel bookings in advance to cut a great deal on your expenses and make the most out of the the breakfast served to you in your hotel.

 

  • Wander about responsibly and use common sense. It is because you will find no ropes alongside waterfalls, and no safety rail besides cliff edges. Icelanders rely on people to be smart and don’t like to mar the beauty of nature with man made things.

 

  • Cafe and restaurants near famous attractions and National parks may not be open all the time, carry some water and snacks along.

 

  • The best of Iceland lies outside Reykjavik. Explore the natural wonders and the countryside, stay in a camp for a day, or a farmhouse instead for a hotel and interact with the locals to truly take in the Icelandic culture.

 

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