The Golden Circle takes in three popular attractions all within 100km of the capital: Thingvellir, Geysir and Gullfoss. The Golden Circle offers the opportunity to see a meeting-point of the continental plates and site of the ancient Icelandic parliament (Thingvellir), a spouting hot fount (Geysir) and a roaring waterfall (Gullfoss).
Since the public transport is lacking on Iceland, there are two options to explore the Golden Circle: one is by joining an organized group tour and other is by renting a car. The first one is cheaper, however if you choose to rent a car you will have all the time in the world to enjoy the stunning views and take some great shots.
Located about 45 minutes ride from Reykjavik,the road to the Thingvellir National Park is marveled at rolling farms, friendly horses, and churches.Thingvelliris the location of Iceland’s first Parliament, started back in 930 AD, however nothing remains of the world’s first parliament (it was conducted over one of the ridges rather than in a building). At the Lögberg people could step forward and give speeches about important matters. An assembly of 48 headmen gathered here to discuss laws & engage in court proceedings.
Thingvellir National Park
This is also where the North American & Eurasian tectonic plates are slowly splitting apart from each other, creating deep rifts in the ground. One of these, called Silfra, is full of icy glacier water where some people go snorkeling or scuba diving.
Haukadalur is a geothermal area about 60km away from Thingvellir National Park. There are two famous geysers here called Geysir and Strokkur. In fact the general term “geyser” was named after this particular one in Iceland.
The original Geysir no longer erupts: there are two stories, one is that an earthquake shut it down, the other one in the 1950’s tourist splugged Geysir by throwing soap into it in an attempt to set it off, and it hasn’t erupted the same since. But a second one called Strokkur constantly explodes with boiling water shooting 100 feet into the air every 10 minutes or so. Haukadalur has a gift shop & restaurant where you can warm up and have a square meal.
The powerful Hvítá river suddenly disappears into a gorge at a spectacular waterfall called Gulfloss, the next major high light on Iceland’s Golden Circle. This wide & fast moving river turns a corner and falls 100 feet into a rift in the earth, producing densehaze& frequent rainbows.
Downward a long staircase from the parking lot, a concrete pathway allows visitors to walk along the edge and look down into the roaring cascade of water. The dramatic scenery at Gullfoss makes it one of Iceland’s most popular attractions.
Blue Lagoon, located in southwestern Iceland is a famous geothermal spa. This spa can be spotted on the Reykjanes Peninsula on a lava field known as Grindavik. This is a man-made water body that is filled by Svartsengi geothermal power plant.
Tourists visit this geothermal spa in Iceland for its therapeutic purposes. The waters of Blue Lagoon contains minerals like sulfur and silica, which is known to cure psoriasis, a kind of skin disease. There is arrangement for both swimming and bathing in the Blue Lagoon. The usual temperature of the water is about 99 to 102 degree Fahrenheit.
While visiting Blue Lagoon in Iceland, tourists have to abide by the hygiene code that is strictly followed in this country. Every guest is required to take a shower before bathing in the geothermal pool. Every two days the warm water in the lagoon is renewed from the nearby geothermal power plant.
Due to heavy rush of tourists round the year, it is advisable to book the tickets earlier for a planned visit. The tourist entry-fees for Blue Lagoon generally starts from around $54 during summer and about $43 during winter seasons. There are various amenities and services offered at this region. Selecting an accommodation and / or service provider, guests can make the most of the in-water massages, spa treatments or take guided tours in the lagoon. There are relaxing lounges near the site, where guests can relax and rest after a tour of Blue Lagoon.
Many visitors everyday visit this Icelandic Blue Lagoon. This point of interest in Iceland remains open everyday. This is an awesome experience to bathe or swim in this warm geothermal spring. There are also facilities to take massage, steam room and sauna baths. There are also special holiday hours for tourists. Besides enjoying the exotic Blue Lagoon, relaxing at lounge bars of nearby hotels, tourists can also choose from the local and international food and drink assortments. This is one worthy tourist spot that should not be missed while visiting Iceland. Shore excursions and whale watching are other favorite activities for tourists in Blue Lagoon, Iceland.
The world’s Northernmost Capital Reykjavik is the Capital and the biggest city of Iceland. The literal meaning of the word Reykjavik is Smokey Bay. Situated among one of the most beautiful and diverse landscape, this metropolitan city will also satisfy your thirst for the modern lifestyle. You can drop in this city during wintertime—when the weather is mild and you get to enjoy the Nordic Lights (aurora borealis), while during summertime, this city enjoys 24 hours of sunlight. Apart from these amazing unique contrasts of nature, there are also some places and unique experiences which can be enjoyed during your stay to Reykjavik,
• The largest church of Iceland- named Hallgrímur, is one of the most visited places of Reykjavik. The tower of this church is structured as a rocket and is visible from the most part of the city. The design of this church is inspired by the basalt lava of northern Iceland. The top of this church is designed to offer a great view of this city. As this city is windy, the area of the top is closed and there are plenty of windows that offer the view from every angle.
• While in Reykjavik, you must enjoy the wildlife that is on offer. The old harbor of this city is a tourist hotspot, which offers trips in whale watching and puffin-viewing. The small boats get you through the nearby island bays where you can watch puffins in their natural habitat. On the way, enjoy the whales dancing through the waves. The surrounding views with the fishing boats offer excellent photo opportunities.
• The Harpa Concert hall is one of the most famous buildings in Iceland. The historical value of this Concert hall is also great. The legendary Tony Bennett was one of the famous singers who have performed in this famous Concert Hall.
• Your trip to Reykjavik will not be completed without tasting the various foods offered over here. If you are a traveler with a preference of discovering the famous food joints, check out the famous hotdog stand Bæjarins bestu. It is said, that Bill Clinton himself has eaten the hot dog from here.
• If your trip cannot complete without some shopping, head to the main shopping street of the city, Laugavegur. Within all the things you need to buy from this city, include the amazing pearl of öskjuhlíð.
• Also don’t miss the amazing nightlife of this city. Although not so popular in the segment of Alcohol, Reykjavik nowadays is popular for its excellent beers. Among the glaciers, blue Lagoons of Iceland, this excellent city gives you an amazing taste of adventure. Mix up of the metropolitan culture with the flavor of Iceland—the adventure of Reykjavik will be indeed a unique one.