This post includes many Icelandic characters that you may not be familiar with. Here’s a quick rundown…
Æ/æ – “ae”, sounds like the English letter ‘i’
Þ/þ – Sounds like “th” in “thong” and “thunder”
Ð/ð – Sounds like “th” in “feather” and “father”
The Golden Circle is a ring of attractions near Reykjavik that’s quintessentially Iceland. Many tour companies including Reykjavik Excursions provide tours for a “modest fee” and itineraries vary between the companies providing these tours. However, there are some constants:
- Þingvellir National Park
- One or more of the hot springs and spas along the way
Instead of going through a tour company, we decided to drive ourselves. First stop, Þingvellir! It’s only 45 minutes northeast of Reykjavik and an absolute joy to drive through. Fact is, Iceland straddles the continental divide between North America and Europe, and Þingvellir is exactly where this divide lies!
Be sure to check out the rest of my pictures in the album!
After a whirl around Þingvellir, we drove on toward Geysir, just off route 35, another 45 minutes east of Þingvellir. Of course, we made several stops along the way to take pictures and enjoy the scenery! We made it to Geysir and, oh boy, was it ever windy! We did get a few good shots…
…and witnessed an eruption of their largest geyser!
Of course, more pictures are on the album. We drove about an hour to a small spa town, but unfortunately the spa was closed for repairs. Dejectedly, we ate at a nearby restaurant (which actually wasn’t bad at all) and then drove back to Reykjavik.
I’m certain we missed some things, but I didn’t want to spend exorbitant amounts of money to be on someone else’s schedule – I wanted the freedom to come and go as I please, and I was satisfied that I saw so many interesting and amazing sights… So however you do it, please make sure to visit Þingvellir and Geysir, at least!
Upon our return to Reykjavik, we drove out to Nonnabiti again for a cheap dinner and went to bed early – all that driving and walking around wore us out.