A Guide to Iceland

I just home home from 8 days in Iceland How was it? In a word - Spectacular. Here are some of the best tips I've gotten before & after my trip GeysirRent a car (and learn to drive manual!) This is a country you will want to see as much of as possible, and there is nothing more freeing that just jumping in a car and driving. If you're travelling alone, it may not be the best financial decision, but if you have even one other person with you - renting a car will be vastly superior to any tour bus trip you'll take. SAD CarsLearn to drive a manual. You will pay close to twice the price to rent an automatic. Both my friend and I learned how to drive the manual in the weeks leading up to the trip, well worth it. Also - everyone in Iceland keeps their lights on all the time. Even in the day time...yes. We rented through a company called SAD cars. They were an inexpensive alternative to the more pricey rent a car companies. The Good The price was great, it came with a fuel discount card, car was in better shape than expected. The Cons They're not located in the airport, they do send someone to pick you up and drive you to their site about 10 minutes away... but they were almost an hour late picking us up. There are plenty of hot pools, not just touristy blue lagoon Yes the Blue Lagoon is spectacular, but its also expensive. Don't feel like you have to go check it out just because its "the thing to do" there are plenty of hot pools all around the country that will be less expensive and less touristy. That being said, I had a lovely time at the Blue Lagoon and am happy I went. But just know that there are hundreds of other options for you to soak it up. blue lagoon Meet locals The best way ever to meet locals: TINDER. Yes I said it. Whether or not you're in a relationship or not, using tinder is an absolutely terrific way to get suggestions from locals & other travellers near by. Just change your bio to say "visiting for a week, what should I check out" and boom - you'll get a million suggestions from people. Buy alcohol at the airport Oh my gosh is alcohol ever expensive in bars. We ordered two rum & cokes at a bar and it was about $40 CAD. You'll save a ton of money by buying at the duty free store when you land in Keflavik. I promise. Walking tour Doing walking tours is something I always do in European cities. There are an abundance of options. I prefer doing the free tours in which you just tip your guide at the end of the tour. This is a great way to get your bearings, learn about the city, and possibly meet some cool folks. tourOur tour guide was funny, knowledgable and also adorable. Double the time you plan to spend 8 days seems like a lot in a small country, but I wish I could have stayed longer. If you want to do the ring road around the country, I would plan a minimum of 10 days. plane crash Sólheimasandur Plane Crash[/caption] Layover! If you're flying from north america, you can now add Iceland as a free layover on your way to Europe. Therefore if you're planning a trip to Paris - you can add up to a 3 day layover in Iceland for no additional cost (other than extra accommodation & food) its a really fantastic promotion and they even offer a "stopover buddy" program so you can be shown around by a local - how cool! [caption id="attachment_3279" align="aligncenter" width="960"]vik Vik Black Sand Beaches[/caption]   Want to see more of my trip? Check out my Iceland travel montage video! [embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0jYVd9nVHXs[/embed]

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