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Iceland Stop Over

Our Iceland Stop-Over Adventure ~ Top 10 Favorite Things!

Have you ever been to Iceland?  Or, have you ever even considered an Iceland stop over??  Here are my Top 10 reasons why I think you should consider an Iceland Stop Over for your next Adventure!

Originally, our stop over in Iceland was just a way to save some money on our flight to London.  But, Iceland quickly became one of our all-time favorite places!  Even with it’s rainy, chilly weather it was an amazing experience.  So, I hope I can convince you that Iceland might be worth a stop-over on the way to your next adventure!

Top 10 Favorites for an Iceland Stop Over

1.  Black Beaches

Growing up around beaches – I’m usually not super impressed with a beach.  But, we went to two different black sand beaches and they were amazing!  I had never seen a beach with sand that wasn’t tan or white, so black beaches were stunning to see! The black beaches were definitely one of my favorite things to see on our Iceland stop over!

 

Black Beach Iceland Stop Over
Djupalonssandur beach – on the Snaefellness Tour  (Photo Credit:  Samantha Svare)

 

 

Iceland Black sand beach
Reynisfjara Beach – Incredibly dramatic!  (Photo Credit:  Samantha Svare)

 

2.  Waterfalls

We saw waterfalls all over southern Iceland!  It was incredible to be driving along and see the north Atlantic coast on our left and mountains on our right.  And, all over the mountains were waterfalls!  And I mean ALL OVER!

Waterfall Iceland Stop-Over
On the South Coast Tour – Skollgulfoss Waterfall  (Photo Credit:  Samantha Svare)

Iceland waterfall
Also on the South Coast tour, Seljalandsfoss Waterfall; you could walk behind this waterfall

3.  Bookstore/Library

Books are big in Iceland.  The long winter makes everyone either readers or writers – or more likely both!  Iceland has the highest per capita number of authors of any country!

One of my favorite souvenirs from other countries is a book in that language.  We saw this popular John Green book.  We also saw (and tried to buy) a copy of Harry Potter in Icelandic.  But, the library that we were in wouldn’t sell it to us.  To be fair, we thought it was a bookstore…oh well!

Fishing Village Iceland
Found A Fault in Our Stars in a library in a small fishing village  (Photo Credit:  Samantha Svare)

Even our hotel had a small reading room and library in it!  I love places that encourage reading!!

Iceland books
Our hotel in Reykjavik had a library 🙂

4.  Food

Iceland probably has some of the best food we’ve ever had on vacation!  We are always all about trying new foods while we are traveling and Iceland was no exception!

Actually, one of our all-time favorite meals was in Iceland.  It was at the LAVA restaurant at the Blue Lagoon.  We tried the Chef’s Sampler Menu.  It was great because the portions were small and we were able to try a lot of different foods.  And, they were all delicious!  Everywhere we ate, the food was delicious!  It could easily take up a whole post…

Iceland Stop-Over food
This was our meal at LAVA restaurant. We ordered the “Tasting Menu” (chef’s choice)
Iceland food
Beef with horseradish sauce and radish slaw
Iceland Food
Tuna with mango salsa, torched onion and Malto

 

 

 

Iceland fish
Slightly torched Char, pickled apples and pearl onions, dill sauce and water cress
Iceland lamb
Lamb with root vegetables, port wine sauce, hollandaise sauce and polenta
Iceland dessert
Crème brulee’ with vanilla bean ice cream, crushed nuts, strawberries with sauce



5.  Blue Lagoon

Our tour guide chided us for going here, saying it was a “tourist trap”.  You can see how trapped we felt, lol!  It was a perfect way to spend an afternoon after a long overseas flight!

Blue Lagoon in Iceland
Our weather was drizzly and about 40 degrees….brrr! But the water was toasty!  (Photo Credit:  Samantha Svare)
Lava cave at Blue Lagoon
Inside the lava cave
Blue Lagoon Spa
My husband and I enjoying the water  (Photo Credit:  Samantha Svare)

6.  Crazy Landscape/Rock Formations

Iceland is a land of many different landscapes!  Driving from the airport it was all yellowish-green moss covered lava flows.  Then, there were mountains that were tall, rugged and full of waterfalls.  And then, there was the shoreline that was full of black sand beaches and lava outcroppings…all kinds of crazy things to see!

Iceland Beaches
At Reynisfjara beach, incredible rock formations!  (Photo Credit:  Samantha Svare)
Iceland movie
This was at Reynisfjara beach. Apparently, Russell Crowe’s latest movie was filmed here!
Black beach
This was at Djupalonssandur beach. Lava formations out in the water.
Iceland
I wasn’t brave enough to walk across this! It was pretty narrow and a long way down!  (Photo Credit:  Samantha Svare)

2015-06-18-14-54-05

7.  Glacier

Did you know that Iceland has the largest glacier in Europe?! Another stop over favorite was seeing the Solheimajokull Glacier.  Since we hadn’t signed up for that outing, we weren’t outfitted to climb on it.  But it was incredibly impressive just to see!

Iceland glacier
This is Solheimajokull glacier!  (Photo Credit:  Samantha Svare)
Iceland Glacier
Solheimajokull glacier is the largest glacier in Europe!
Iceland glacier
Beautiful ice formations – dripping and melting!
Iceland
My kids looking out over Solheimajokull Glacier!

8.  Churches

Churches dotted the landscape all over the South.  And, most that we saw were red-roofed.  Apparently, this was due to Dutch influence with the church.  Since Dutch flag colors are red and white, the churches are all red-roofed and white!

Iceland church
Most of the churches we saw were red roofed and fairly small.
Iceland church
This small church was in Arnistappi on the Hellnar peninsula

9.  Quirky Hotel

Our quirky hotel in Iceland made our stop over perfect! We stayed in Reykjavik right on the water.  So, it was easy to get around and quite comfortable.  The European breakfast each morning was a treat!

Iceland hotel
I loved the way the lobby was decorated – so eclectic!
Iceland art
Enjoyed hanging with this guy every morning 🙂
Iceland hotel
More quirkiness!

 

10.  Sheep

Sheep were all over the place.  And, they rarely stayed in any kind of fences.  So, they’d wander all over the place!  It was fun to see!  Also, Iceland has fabulous wool yarn and knitted items.  Loved seeing that!

Iceland Sheep
This is a lousy picture, but sheep dotted the landscape everywhere we went!
Iceland sheep
Sheep hanging out on the side of the road  (Photo Credit:  Samantha Svare)

Ready For You Iceland Stop Over?

So, have I convinced you that you should try an Iceland Stop Over?  If you’ve not been to or through Iceland, I highly recommend it.  We saw just a fraction of the country in our 2-1/2 day stop-over.  I would love to go back and see some of the rest of the country!

Hopefully, I’ve convinced you that Iceland is at least worth considering for your next adventure?!  Because, Iceland has something for everyone ~ the outdoorsy type, the foodie, the book nerd or even the history buff!  You’ll all love Iceland!

Plan an Iceland Stop-Over

 

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5 Comments

  1. Looks like you guys got a lot done in a short time! Iceland looks so beautiful and I can’t wait to get there one day. A road trip is so the way to go! Also I know the Blue Lagoon is touristy, but it’s just one of those “tourist traps” that you have to give into, right?! Looks so relaxing, despite the hoards of people haha 😀

  2. How awesome!! It would be so cool to see a black sand beach and I have ALWAYS wanted to go to Blue Lagoon! This looks like one amazing trip!!

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