Iceland – experiences?

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  • Iceland – experiences?
  • scruff9252

    My better half & I are heading to Iceland in the summer – flying out with camping stuff, hiring a car and going off exploring.

    Idle Friday afternoon musing and wondering who’s been and what’s good to see – e are more mountain / wild landscape people than city folk.

    Secondly, Are there many bitey insects? Considering what tent to take – could take our OEX tent we’ve used for cycle touring @ 3kg and 19l packed volume or my trailstar tarp at 0.6kg and 0.5l volume. Trailstar falls down if there midges / mosquito’s but would standup to a gale better than the other tent. I understand Iceland can be pretty well ventilated…



    I’ve never been, but my mum goes there and says you can pick up a bargain….


    We went in Sept 2016 for ten days. An amazing place but expensive. Summer is even more expensive, especially car hire. We only really touched the south west of the country – we went as far east as Skogafoss.

    You don’t need full 4×4 unless you want to go on the fell roads (you aren’t insured if you use them in a non 4×4) but it’s worth getting something fairly big as once you get away from the ring road and towns the roads are un-paved and can be quite rough. You’ll come across some quite bad washboard seemingly out of nowhere.

    What to see? There’s the usual tourist things like Thingvelltir, Geysir and Gullfoss (The Golden Circle) which you can do in a day without rushing. The tourist coaches come and go so one minute the places are heaving, then almost empty. Walk away from the car parks and you’ll be almost alone. Lots of waterfalls, you’ll have seen many on TV programmes and adverts. As you might imagine there’s a lot of natural hot springs. Landmannalaugur is worth visiting, amazing coloured mountains (and a hot spring beneath the lava field).

    Tent: take something that will stand up to the wind! At Landmannalaugur you won’t get pegs in the ground so you’ll need to use rocks to hold things down.

    Midges. Hmm, I think they’d all been blown down to Scotland when we were there. 😯

    Edit: Don’t drive away from existing roads and tracks, there are big fines if caught.


    My boss went last week – his truck got stuck in a ditch half way up a mountain then the weather closed in – zero visibility and -14 degrees outside. He was genuinely scared they’d run out of fuel and freeze to death but apparently it happens so often that they send rescue vehicles up as a matter of course when the weather turns bad just in case some fool tourist gets stuck so he was rescued within a couple of hours.


    Went up there February last year for a small conference. It’s not cheap but it’s not *terribly* expensive if you are careful. I found a fab kebab place 😆

    They had the single biggest night’s snowfall they’ve had for 60 years whilst we were there. Was amazing the next day – made getting to the actual conference a real adventure. What’s more amazing was by lunchtime all the roads were clear again.

    I do remember the organiser at one point, after plans had changed yet again because of the weather saying “Well, we are now on plan Z but don’t worry – in Icelandic, we have a few more letters in our alphabet…”

    Yes, I got to see the Northern Lights, yes they were utterly amazing.


    the hustler

    Sruff, a direct quote from friends that have just (literallya couple of days ago) come back

    Just at Reykjavik airport after our 10 nights in Iceland for our 30th anniversary. Iceland threw a lot at us, high winds, horizontal rain, snow blizzards, unexpected waves, extortionate prices and early morning hotel fire alarms! But it gave us so much more…… Reykjavik sights, beautiful Atlantic whale watching trip despite no sightings, geysers rising high, Gulfoss waterfall at dawn, snowy mountains, big ever changing skies, infamous volcanoes in the distance, rugged lava fields, glacial lagoons with icebergs, glaciers, Black Sands beach, happy hour every evening, the Blue Lagoon, first signs of the Northern lights, yahtzee challenges, holding up the bridge across two contintents and many more memories

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