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Discovering Iceland: the land of fire and ice

Iceland is abundant with waterfalls, volcanoes, geysers, lava fields and rivers. The capital is Reykjavik, where most of the population lives. Iceland is a Nordic island country between the European and North American Continents.

We spent a few days in Iceland, in order to explore and to see the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis).

Unfortunately we could not see them, because it was cloudy every night we were there.

What are the Northern Lights?  

The lights are collisions between electrically charged particles from the sun, that enter the earth’s atmosphere, which can be seen above the magnetic poles of the northern and southern hemispheres.

When is the best time to see the Northern Lights in Iceland? 

In Iceland the best time to see the Northern Lights, is from november to middle march, when the months are full of dark nights. But it is difficult to predict, it depends on the weather and solar activities.  A dark sky is the most important factor.

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Where can you see the Northern Lights? 

The best places to see the Northern Lights are: Iceland, Alaska, Norway, Finland, Canada and Greenland.

We tried every single night to see this incredible phenomenon.  One night we set up our cameras and tripod, and we walked around the town searching for the Northern Lights!  Now we have an excuse to return to Iceland, or we will try to see it in another country!  We may not have seen the Northern Lights, but we did not get upset. We had a lot of fun visiting Iceland.

We saw waterfalls, visited many parks, Turf houses and met the Icelandic horses.  Not to mention we explored the city of Reykjavik, which, is full of bars, cafes and nice restaurants.  The city of Reykjavik is very nice and small.

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Turf house
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Reykjavik

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Hallgrimskirkja Church

Our adventure started at the Blue Lagoon, a geothermal spa rich in minerals like silica. It took us about 30 minutes to get there from Reykjavik. We ate lunch at the Lava Restaurant and we spent the rest of the day bathing, and getting facial treatments with silica mug, and having drinks at the bar.

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Blue Lagoon

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Lava Restaurant

Tips: Be sure to make reservations, well in advance of visiting the Blue Lagoon.  It has a limited amount daily visitors, as Iceland is becoming a very popular tourist destination, the Blue Lagoon is one of the most visited places in the country.

The next day we drove to the South of Iceland, on the way we stopped to see the one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Iceland. We climbed and walked behind the Seljalandsfoss waterfall, than we stopped at Skógafoss.

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Skogofoss

After checking out these beautiful waterfalls, we went to the Reynisfjara Black  Sand Beach along the south coast of Iceland.  Here there are rocks, caves, cliffs and black sand.  People are not allowed to swim in the ocean.  It is very cold and dangerous with a strong under toe.

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Black Sand Beach

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On the way back, we had the chance to see the unique Icelandic horses, in an open farm, just off the side of the road. Icelandic horses are very small and have similar characteristics to a pony. They are very cute and friendly.

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Icelandic Horses

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The last day in Iceland we drove around the Golden Circle, we stopped at the Geyser, saw the Strokkur erupting and the stunning mountains and landscapes of this unique country.  After spending some time at the Geyser, we went to Gullfoss waterfall, less than 10 minutes away.  We also visited the Þingvellir (Thingvellir) national Park a beautiful Iceland landmark.

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Strokkur Geyser Erupting

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We had an amazing experience, visiting Iceland. The food is excellent. Icelandic people are very nice and friendly, and the country is stunning.

Currency: Icelandic Króna

Official Language: Icelandic

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