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Published: June 21st 2019
Hello everyone! I hope that you are ready for another chapter of this exciting voyage around Iceland. We have been discovered countless attractions in the course of this blog. This country is simply fascinating in all aspects. You can not miss the opportunity to visit and discover the incredible sights and rich culture found in such a remote location like this.
I had spent the night in one of the most interesting locations in the north of Iceland, Akureyri
. This is a very unique small city that has it all. One of the symbols of this town is Akureyrarkirkja
. A beautiful Lutheran church built in the '40s. It is very noticeable from almost anywhere in the city as it lays on top of a hill. I stayed at Hotel Kea that night, which is conveniently located right next to Akureyrarkirkja
. My plan was to stop by the church in the morning before leaving Akureyri
. Did you know that Kaupvangsstræti is known as "Art Street"?
This city has given room for the cultural scene to expand. You will find countless museums and art galleries in town. I was instantly attracted by the colorful walls found on this street. If
you continue walking towards the city center, you will find many cozy cafes, restaurants, and shops. There are also many tourists from all over the world, so it is a perfect place to meet new friends.
Well, it is a shame I have to leave so soon, but my advice is to stay a little bit longer and explore this great town. Now, it is time to continue driving to find new adventures.
Take a look at today's itinerary:
Today, I will visit a town called Hofsós
which is located about 2 hours away from Akureyri
. I have read online that is considered Iceland's most beautiful pool. There are several pools around the country as it is part of the locals' traditions. Imagine enjoying a relaxing geothermal water swim next to an incredible background. This may sound like a dream, but it is possible to get in Iceland.
There are two ways to get to Hofsós
from Akureyri. The first one is via Dalvik
, a fishing village with friendly people. I decided to take this route because of the scenic of the road. You will see a green spectacle if
you come in spring or summer and a perfect winter wonderland between October and March. Another way is to drive south to Varmahlíð
where you will find basic services and some traditional restaurants which specialty is fish (salmon and trout mostly). It is always nice to make a quick stop along the way as there is so much to see.
As I am arriving at Hofsós
, I could instantly spot an island from the parking lot by the pool. Drangey
or Drang Isle
is an island in the northern fjords, it has dramatic cliffs and it is made out strong volcanic stone. It doesn't really matter if the weather is bad while visiting this pool. The hillside view is really outstanding. I spent two hours here, shifting from one pool to another. There is a large and small pool in the venue. The small one may be too hot for some. Remember that you must shower before and after entering any pool in Iceland. This means, no underwear allowed.
After a nice dip in the pools, why not doing a bit of exploring in the area? Yes, you could visit the local Icelandic Emigration Centre. A very interesting
museum that portrays the stories of many families that migrated to North America
back in the 19th century. You will learn about the challenges they had to face during this process. It is a great way to understand a little bit more about the Icelandic character, shaped after countless natural disasters and oppression through the years.
My next stop was Sauðárkrókur
, another fascinating town with cozy traditional houses and charming views by the seaside. This was the perfect place to have lunch. After all that swimming, you get hungry, don't you? There are many options here, from classical coffee houses, bakeries and pizza restaurants, to name a few. If you feel like continue exploring, check out Drangey Tours by the harbor. They offer daily tours to Drangey island
, a perfect place to spot seabirds, puffins and other species. Don't miss out.
Some of you have asked me if the roads in Iceland are in good conditions after driving for almost 10 days now. Yes, they are excellent, in fact, the country's main road number one is called the Ring Road
. It will take you around the main cities and towns in Iceland
. This route is suitable for all
vehicles since it is mostly paved. I have rented a small 2WD car which is perfect for the solo travelers out there. Personally, I enjoy driving so, it was not much of a problem for me. The key is to find the perfect car rental in Keflavik Airport
. Luckily, I did not have any issues with the car at all. But having purchased the most complete + zero excess insurance really brought peace of mind to my trip. Remember to be mindful about the road and weather conditions at all times.
After a couple of hours drive south, I have arrived in Iceland's capital Reykjavik
, where I will be spending my last couple of days before heading back home. The city is not that big, yet it is very lively. You will find traditional buildings, restaurants, and bars. There are also great activities you could do while lodging in Reykjavik
. Visit Kolaportid Flea Market
, for example, it is a great place to find souvenirs, food, and second-hand records. I had also visited Hallgrimskirkja
most iconic building. I found churches in Iceland so fascinating for some reason. Last but not least, If you do not feel like driving or walking, what about joining
a guided tour? Join the fascinating Landmanannalaugar Tour
and a wide set of activities around the island. Some of them even offer hotel pick up service, so it is really convenient!
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