If there was ever a country that deserved a roadtrip it's Iceland. Overwhelmingly beautiful, diverse and accessible it's a must see.

Iceland is overwhelming. Four weeks later I’m still in awe of it. It’s stunningly raw power are hard to put into words and seeing it with a campervan was simply, perfect. I felt at times so free, so in touch with nature and so peaceful that I actually contemplated not coming home. Iceland is the land of fire and ice and much, much more….

Firstly, I went in mid July so there was no Northern Lights (pictured left). They run from September through to April so that’s for another trip. The temperature in July peaked at 23 C, and averaged around 18 C. At night you need to wrap up as temperatures move down to 5 to 10 C. Point is, you need some warm clothes even in Summer, walking shoes or boots, a beanie, a good fleece etc and keep your clothes to a functional minimum as you won’t have loads of storage in the camper

Iceland is a Nordic island country in the North Atlantic, with a population of 364,134 and an area of 103,000 km2 (40,000 sq mi), making it the most sparsely populated country in Europe The capital and largest city is Reykjavík. Reykjavík and the surrounding areas in the southwest of the country are home to over two-thirds of the population. Iceland is volcanically and geologically active. The interior consists of a plateau characterised by sand and lava fields, mountains, and glaciers, and many glacial rivers flow to the sea through the lowlands. Iceland is warmed by the Gulf Stream and has a temperate climate, despite a high latitude just outside the Arctic Circle. Its high latitude and marine influence keep summers chilly, with most of the archipelago having a polar climate. Its only 490 km to go East – West and 314 km North – South and their is a ring road all around the Island to access all the amazing things to see (see map below). The total length of the coastline is 4,988km and I covered about 3,500km in 5 very full days. Note it doesn’t get dark in Summer, which is slightly strange at 1am and you still need sunglasses but it means you can get more done if you need.

How did I get there? 

I flew to Reykavik with Easyjet but would recommend Skyscanner to sort your flights out. My flight from London Luton was £80 and I just took a small 15kg rucksack (with absolute basics in). You won’t be eating out in any a la carte restaurants so save your Dolce & Gabbana for Venice or Paris.

My Camper!

 

Camptoo are looking to grow in Iceland in the future so I needed to rent a camper and would recommend Cozy Campers Iceland

You have to go into Reykavik to collect it but that worked for me as I wanted to see the capital. There is no train to the city from the airport so you need take a FlyBus from the airport (about 45 minutes) and then a taxi or bus to the Cozy office (another 20 mins) but they will come and get you in Reykavik if you organise it. If you want collect a camper near the airport straight from the plane there are several companies based around the airport including Camper Van Iceland but we would recommend you spend some time in the capital if its first visit.

Cozy Campers have supper funky vans as you can see in the photos below and I find the layout, sleeping arrangements and comfort fantastic for a few days exploring. Mr B, the owner is a great guy and they do a lot of work with educating kids in Africa etc so they get our vote!

 

My journey

Basically, there is a ring road (in blue) all the way around the Island. I arrived on Thursday morning and left Reykavik at 5pm (on the West of the island) and headed South (which is the most scenic of the coastlines) to the Golden circle, to see Geysir Hot Springs and Gullfoss Waterfalls which sees 1.5m visitors per year.

Leaving Reykavik, I decided to head inland to the ‘Golden Circle’ and decided to miss out the Blue Lagoon to visit on the way back

First stop was Grímsnes, a relatively small volcanic system located SE of Thingvallavatn lake east of an en echelon group of volcanic fields extending across the Reykjanes Peninsular

Moving on to a favourite stop along the Golden Circle is the highly active Geysir Hot Spring Area with boiling mud pits, exploding geysers and the lively Strokkur which spouts water 30 meters (100 ft) into the air every few minutes. The newly opened Geysir Center offers exhibits and informative presentations year round and is a must see (below)

NextstopGullfoss Waterfall

Gullfoss (translated to ‘Golden Falls’) is one of Iceland’s most iconic and beloved waterfalls, found in the Hvítá river canyon in Southwest Iceland only 2 hours drive from the capital. Because of the waterfall’s two stages, Gullfoss should actually be thought of as two separate features. The first, shorter cascade is 11 metres (36 feet), whilst the second drop is 21 metres (69 feet). The canyon walls on both sides of the waterfall reach heights of up to 70 metres (230 feet), descending into the great Gullfossgjúfur canyon. Geologists believe that this canyon was formed by glacial outbursts at the beginning of the last age.

How did I get there? 

I flew to Reykavik with Easyjet but would recommend Skyscanner to sort your flights out. My flight from London Luton was £80 and I just took a small 15kg rucksack (with absolute basics in). You won’t be eating out in any a la carte restaurants so save your Dolce & Gabbana for Venice or Paris.

Enjoy!

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