Although its commonplace to see wonderful pictures of America on this blog, I recently visited a colder climate and wow, I loved it. Reykjavik is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been, no matter where you look you are in awe of natural or man made beauty. So I thought I would share what I got up to with you all..
We flew with Easy Jet from Manchester to Kefalik Airport, the 2 and a half hour flight wasn’t bad and I was amazed landing to a runway full of snow. We hadn’t booked transfers in advanced, which was great because they seemed to be cheaper than back home! Greyline transfers took us from the airport to our hotel. We stayed at City Park Hotel which is further out than the city centre but an awful lot cheaper and close enough (more on that later). We were a bit earlier than check in so headed to the Mexican Restaurant just next door called Culiacan which was a great Chipotle style place. Soon enough, we headed into the city centre via the bus (stops behind the hotel) for only 440isk. We mooched round the shops and bars, finding ourselves in spots covered in street art. We headed to Bistro Solon for dinner, where Liam had a lamb crown which looked divine, although I was somewhat disappointed in my fish and chips.
We rushed back to the hotel so we could be picked up for our tour searching for the Northern Lights. I couldn’t recommend this tour enough, we booked it through Viator with a company called Trips. Our guide was called Ari and was so up beat the whole time he really made it enjoyable. We saw the Northern Lights almost immediately and quickly stopped. Soon enough the clouds were rolling in so we were on the move again, we were heading to the Bridge between Continents when we saw them again, but this time the vivid green light was so bright. We just pulled over on a snowy patch of land and watched them for around an hour or so. This is when Ari gave us lovely hot chocolate and ginger biscuits – a great touch for when your fingers and toes are almost falling off.
The next day began with a stroll to the start of the main strip where it was full of quirky little shops and more puffin toys than you can imagine. We went to Hallgrímskirkja, which is a Lutheran Church with beautiful architecture yet a Scandi simplicity. We then set off to the Blue Lagoon which was definitely something I was most excited for and it didn’t disappoint. I popped way too much conditioner on my newly dyed hair and went into the Lagoon, quite happily though the inside entrance. The second you get into the warm water and look at the landscape surrounding you, you instantly feel relaxed. We swam to get our Sicilia Mud Mask which was fun to put on and even better to see my boyfriend freak out when it started tightening on his face! We had the comfort package which included the first drink free and the additional Algae mask, that was a joy for my dry skin.
The night ended with a trip back to Hallgrímskirkja for the Winter Lights Festival where they projected images onto the Church whilst Icelandic Horses trotted through the main street. We went for Dinner in a restaurant called Primo which was amazing, I would highly recommend it. I had the Icelandic Salted Cod which was the nicest thing I’ve tasted in a long time.
Friday was our excursion day, which was beautiful but definitely not what we had in mind. This was booked again through Viator with Reykjavik Excursions and basically an hour into the tour they told us we were on the wrong tour and the wrong bus picked us up! We had planned to do the Waterfalls, Beaches and Glaciers tour which was right up our street but instead ended up on the Golden Circle tour. We were pretty disappointed, especially due to the duration and price difference between the two tours but non the less it was great to see the Crater, Geysir and the National Park so we tried to stay positive. One thing to note, there were no toilets on the coach, some stops didn’t have toilets and the last stop you have to pay for toilets! Keep this in mind haha! It was beautiful to see all of the sights on this tour but I would definitely recommend walking boots (for every day but especially for a tour like this). I got a cheap pair from Sports Direct and was basically horrified by these ugly grey shoes ruining all
of my outfits, but boy I love them now.
Saturday was spent wandering around the city centre, we took a long walk to the coast from our hotel and continued to the Sun Voyager. A sculptor of an old Viking Ship with a beautiful Mountainous backdrop. We found ourselves walking to a bakery on Frakkastigur where you HAVE to try the cinnamon rolls! Thanks to the clear sky we also went up the Hallgrímskirkja for a gorgeous view of the City – 900isk each. It was definitely a walking day for us, the beauty of Reykjavik is the small corners of quaint shops, art and handknitted jumpers. You can walk almost anywhere and find soemthing to look at. We walked to the Haarpa Opera House which was hosting the Northern Lights Run in which everyone has glowing/light up items and run round the city to reflect the Aurora Borealis that the country is known for.
I genuinely fell head over heels in love with Iceland and I’m sure you will too.